“A Night In At the Movies” The Saints: Real Superheroes

April 2009 – Everyone loves superheroes.  They are beings that are stronger and better than we are. They protect us from the super-villans and bullies that we are not strong enough to fight on our own. They are powerful moral figures who come to our rescue when we need them. We don’t even have to ask them for help – they know we’re in trouble and they just appear! They are selfless in their pursuit of restoring order and justice, especially in an era that seems to be full of gray areas – they give us a picture of right and wrong in black and white.  They have extraordinary powers and really cool costumes.

Am I talking about Superman, the Hulk, Spiderman or even the Green Lantern? No!  Meet the real superheroes: The Saints!

In every age, and perhaps especially in this age, we all need Superheroes to emulate, to give us courage and to inspire us to be better than we are.

I know that I’m preaching to the choir, but think about the “heroes” of our modern day. Too often they turn out to have feet of clay. They shock and disappoint with their bad (sometimes illegal, sometimes immoral) behavior.

On this page I’ve compiled an assortment of movies on the Saints that your family might enjoy.  You’ll find drama, adventure, courage, and enduring love. And best of all, you’ll get to know the Superheroes you can count on: the Communion of Saints.

Look for a separate page of Saint movies for young children.


Saint Augustine 

Father Benedict Groeschel
introduces the viewer to his teacher of fifty years, St. Augustine. This preeminent Father of the Church left over five million published words — ranging from history and philosophy to scriptural commentary and mystical writings

Song of Bernadette 

The classic black and white film that beautifully portrays the appearance and miracle of Our Lady of Lourdes, and the life of the girl to whom Our Lady appeared, St. Bernadette. A superb cast including Vincent Price, Lee J. Cobb, and Jennifer Jones, this film won five Academy Awards, including Best Actress for Jones as Bernadette, and Best Score.

Passion of Bernadette 

Following up the acclaimed best-selling movie, Bernadette, the story of the apparitions of Our Lady in Lourdes to Bernadette Soubirous, this beautiful film tells the rest of the story of her life after the Marian visions- the life that made Bernadette a saint

Saint Catherine of Siena 

Journey to Catherine of Siena's native Italy, as actress Mary McCown brings this medieval saint to life. While visiting the houses, palaces and churches where St. Catherine served God and the Church, Fr. Jacques Daley reveals the spiritual lessons of this holy woman who spent her life addressing the political powers of the time and caring for those stricken with the plague.

Mokokai The Story of Fr.Damien 

The story of Fr. Damien, who went to the island of Molokai, where lepers had been exiled to live in miserable surroundings. Damien earned the trust of of the lepers, and his appeals for help resonated throughout the world. Even after Damien himself contracted leprosy he carried on working for his "fellow lepers" to the end

Uncommon Kindness: Fr. Damien 

Narrated by Robin Williams, this outstanding documentary tells the story of the heroic missionary priest, Fr. Damien de Veuster, who followed God’s call to serve the outcast leper colony on Molokai. Passionate, driven, and the object of criticism, he provided housing, food, medical care as well as their spiritual needs. He even built their coffins and dug their graves

Time for Miracles: Elizabeth Seton 

Kate Mulgrew gives a moving performance as St. Elizabeth Seton, America's first native born saint and a convert to Catholicism who overcame the great tragedy of the deaths of her young husband and two children, and went on to found the American Sisters of Charity and the first American Catholic schools


A drama on the life of Blessed Sister Faustina, based upon her experiences recorded in her spiritual diary. She received from Our Lord the visions of Divine Mercy early this century. A beautiful, artistic portrayal of her mystical life

Francis of Assisi 

The first time ever released on video, this is the full-length theatrical production on the life of St. Francis of Assisi that stars Bradford Dillman and Dolores Hart (who lift Hollywood to become a contemplative nun after playing the role). Shot on location in Assisi, this gorgeous production gives a realistic and inspiring portrayal of the life of Francis and Clare, and how their radical conversions affected all those around them

Saint Francis 

Filmed on location in Assisi and other actual locations where St. Francis lived and died, tells the story of this greatly beloved saint from childhood through his death. Captured by the enemy as a soldier and put in prison, he has a life changing experience that inspires him after being freed to abandon his riches and dedicate his life to living the Gospel in simplicity, poverty and charity towards all

Francis of Assisi 

Shot on location in Assisi, this gorgeous production that stars Bradford Dillman and Dolores Hart gives a realistic and inspiring portrayal of the life of Francis and Clare, and how their radical conversions affected all those around them. Directed by Michael Curtiz (Casablanca), this beautiful film is full of vivid color and superb cinematography. It also stars Stuart Whitman and Pedro Armendariz

Francis and Clare 

Francis and Clare of Assisi - two figures of the Middle Ages who went against all conventions of the times and whose way of life is still a challenge. With both beautifully suggestive photography that takes you to the places frequented by Clare and Francis and original music with medieval melodies, their extraordinary tale is told

St Francis and the Franciscans 

Shot on location, this beautiful program chronicles the life of St. Francis of Assisi. Period paintings and a dramatic performance portray the story of young Francis Bernardone. Various Franciscans show how Francis lived peacefully in poverty, helped to rebuild the churches of Assisi and how he quickly gathered a large following. Finally, they recount where Francis received the stigmata

Assisi Home of St Francis 

In this hauntingly beautiful film, viewers are given a guided tour of the town of Assisi by St Francis himself, as he retells his life story amid the splendor of Assisi. You will explore all the sites in Assisi that played a significant role in his life. Assisi's spiritual and mystical dimension, and its artistic and cultural heritage are explored, including its winding medieval streets, churches, squares, and its festivals

The Flowers of St Francis 

In a series of simple and joyous vignettes, director Roberto Rosselini and co-writer Federico Fellini lovingly convey the universal teachings—of humility, compassion, and sacrifice—of the People’s Saint. Shot in a neo-realist manner, with monks from the Nocere Inferiore monastery playing the roles of St. Francis and his disciples, The Flowers of St. Francis is a timeless and moving portrait of the search for spiritual enlightenment

Saint Gerard Majella 

Shot on location in Italy, Ireland, and the United States, brings to life the extraordinary passion and devotion of St. Gerard, from his earliest days when he played with the baby Jesus, to his all too brief life as a Redemptorist religious, when he performed so many miracles that he became known as the “Wonder Worker”, and patron of expectant mothers

Saint Gianna Molla 

This is the inspiring story of a newly canonized contemporary woman. Gianna Molla (1923-1962) risked her life in order to save her unborn child. Diagnosed with uterine tumors during her fourth pregnancy, she refused a hysterectomy that would have aborted the child, and opted for a riskier surgery in an attempt to save the baby. Herself a medical doctor, Molla did give birth to the child, but succumbed to an infection

Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius 

From his experiences in solitary prayer, St. Ignatius wrote a handbook for retreats called the Spiritual Exercises. These "exercises for the soul" lead the follower of Christ from self will and excessive attachment into the freedom of the sons of God: freedom to know and do the will of God. Under the guidance of Fr. Raymond Gawronski, S.J., the viewers of this 13 part series can make the actual Ignatian retreat, covering all the major points of the Spiritual Exercises

Joan of Arc 

The acclaimed CBS miniseries, starring Leelee Sobieski as the heroic 19-year-old woman whose saintly visions lead her to unite France against its English invaders. Five hundred years after she is burned at the stake for heresy, she is declared a saint. This impressive, richly visual epic production features an all-star cast including Jacqueline Bisset, Olympia Dukakis, Robert Loggia, Maximilian Schell, Peter Strauss, and Peter O'Toole

St John in Exile 

The year is 96 A.D. Christians through out the Roman Empire have been persecuted and killed. John, the last living disciple of Jesus' twelve, has been imprisoned. Though he is 86 years old and confined to a cave on Patmos, John refuses to surrender. In this one-man presentation by Dean Jones we relive the moving events which changed the course of human history

Don Bosco 

Stars Ben Gazzarra as St. John Bosco in the first ever production about the popular saint of Turin. Blessed with tremendous natural and supernatural gifts, a wonderful sense of humor, St. John Bosco overcame great obstacles to help children of the streets find a better life

St John Bosco Mission to Love 

Flavio Insinna as St. John Bosco, the great priest and educator of youth from the tough streets of Turin, Italy. Beautifully filmed in Italy, this epic movie dramatizes the many challenges that Don Bosco had to overcome from this childhood through founding his religious order, the Salesians, for helping educate boys

Joseph: Man Closest to Christ 

He was a just man, appointed by God to be the husband of Mary and the chosen father of Jesus. But there is more to St. Joseph than his familiar role at the center of the salvation message. He was a prayerful man, an exemplary worker and a true model of authentic manhood. This powerful film explores all aspects of St. Joseph and the many ways he reflects the nature of God, combining stunning artwork and interviews with Catholic leaders

Two Suitcases: St Josephine Bakhita 

Powerful docu-drama of a humble slave who survived beatings to become Sudan’s first saint. Taken as a child by Arab slave-traders, she was eventually purchased by a kind Italian consulate who entrusted her to the care of the Canossian Sisters. Learning about the Catholic faith and the love of God, she became a holy woman and an inspiration to all. Since her death in 1947 many miracles have been attributed to her

Maria Goretti 

The story of Saint Maria Goretti is retold in this beautifully made new film from Italy. It tells of the plight of the poor laborers of the time, struggling to survive in a swampy area with rampant malaria and extreme poverty. Luigi and Assunta Goretti keep their faith despite the hardship, and instill in their children a deep love for God. Their daughter Maria especially is devout. But tragedy strikes more than once: sickness and death affects the Goretti family, and then their young neighbor Alessandro does the unthinkable...

Fourteen Flowers of Pardon 

This is the moving story of the life and death of the Church’s youngest canonized saint, Maria Goretti. It poignantly illustrates Maria’s forgiveness of the man who mortally stabbed her because of her resistance of his attempted rape and includes historic photographs, interviews with Maria’s mother, and film footage of the canonization ceremony.

Maximilian: Saint of Auschwitz 

Highly acclaimed actor Leonardo Defilippis gives a stunning performance in this one-man drama of the heroic life and death of St. Maximilian Kolbe, the martyr of charity at Auschwitz. Performed before sell-out crowds across the United States, this gripping drama of Kolbe's life is accompanied by an inspiring original musical score. Defilippis brilliantly condenses the wide ranging life of Kolbe into seventy-six minutes of stirring drama in this top quality film production. Guaranteed to inspire!

Ocean of Mercy 

Filmed in more than 20 cities across Poland and America, this film examines the phenomenal lives of Blessed Faustina Kolwalska, St. Maximilian Kolbe, and Pope John Paul II, modern day “Apostles of Mercy”. Through rare film footage, photographs, and extensive interviews, this story journeys across a dramatic visual landscape to document their heroic struggle and herald the message of Divine Mercy to all mankind

St. Patrick 

This is the first ever feature film depicting the dramatic life of the legendary Irish hero and saint. Kidnapped at the age of 16 by Irish raiders, Patrick escapes after six years, only to return to the turbulent country as a missionary to preach the faith. Armed with great courage, convictions and unwavering faith that Christianity could liberate Ireland, we see how his mission altered the course of history. Patrick Bergin, Malcolm McDowell and Susannah York star in this lush production filmed in Ireland

Saint Patrick: Apostle of Ireland 

Who was St. Patrick? This new documentary film delves beneath the myth of Ireland’s patron saint to reveal him as an ordinary man who accomplished the extraordinary by placing his faith in God. Exquisitely filmed on location in Ireland, and using dramatic re-creations, this film visually traces the great saint’s footsteps from his birth to his death


Few historical figures inspire more celebration than Ireland’s St. Patrick. This docudrama takes a new look at one of the best-loved and least-understood icons of world religion. The story of the real St. Patrick is part adventure tale and part spiritual awakening, with the future saint rising from slave to liberator; learning to forgive and ultimately love his enemies; taking up a cause no one believed in; and finally lighting a fire that kept western civilization alive

Paul of Tarsus 

Shot on location in Rome and other sites to celebrate the “Year of St. Paul” Paul of Tarsus was the greatest evangelizer of first century Christianity, the biggest contributor to the New Testament, the most influential early Christian missionary, and one of Rome’s most famous citizens. This fast paced and insightful film takes you on the journey of Paul the Apostle, from his dramatic conversion at Damascus to his total commitment to spreading the Word of God at all costs, to his condemnation and death in Rome

Apostle Paul and the Earliest Churches 

This new documentary follows Paul's missionary journeys, enhanced with archeological, artistic, geographic, and religious facts that bring to life the story of the apostle's struggles. Accompanied by 3D animated maps, you'll follow Paul's travels to Antioch, Ephesus, Tarsus, and more, experiencing an ancient culture's witness to the birth of Christianity

Paul the Emissary 

In this impressive drama starring English actor Garry Cooper we follow Saul, the greatest persecutor of the early church, to Paul the servant of Christ. Struck down by a powerful conversion experience on the road to Damascus, Saul-his name changed to Paul- went on to become the greatest Christian missionary

Footprints of God: Paul 

Zealous for the God of Israel, Saul of Tarsus pursued murderous threats against the disciples of Jesus. But Saul’s zeal was turned upside down when he was knocked from his “high horse” and humbled by the hand of God. Go on the road with St. Paul through Israel, Syria, Turkey, Greece and Italy. Fall from a horse in the desert and dangle over the Damascus Wall in a basket. Cling to driftwood in the sea and stride along ancient Roman roads

The Story of Paul the Apostle 

This docu-drama from The History Channel explores the life and legacy of the greatest missionary of the early church. Theologians reflect on the importance of his success in spreading the Word, and examine his many writings - some of the earliest extant Christian documents. They shed light on not just the origins of Christianity but the man who dramatically propelled its advance

Footprints of God: Peter 

The first film in a projected 10-video series, The Footprints of God: The Story of Salvation from Abraham to Augustine, join host Stephen Ray, best-selling author and dynamic speaker, on an amazing journey of adventure about Peter, the rugged fisherman Jesus chose to lead His Church. Filmed completely on location in Rome and the Holy Land, you will follow Peter from Galilee to Rome to discover answers about the major role of the Papacy in the saga of salvation

John of the Cross 

Acclaimed actor Leonardo Defilippis gives a stunning performance in this portrayal of the Carmelite mystic and Doctor of the Church.  A warmly human portrait of the mystical John, showing his charity, humility, suffering and patience. Out standing music score. Also includes other actors and actresses in roles like Teresa of Avila, Carmelite monks, etc. Shot on location in beautiful Napa Valley

Padre Pio: Sanctus 

This beautiful new film on DVD gives the best complete coverage and overview of the life and spirituality of St. Padre Pio. The 135 minutes include the award-winning biographical documentary, Padre Pio: Man of God, along with 80 minutes of new previously unseen footage that includes scenes from his Beatification and Canonization, interviews with close associates, a biographical synthesis, visits to his home, monastery, tomb, and much more

50 Years of Thorns and Roses 

Ordained a priest in 1910, the five wounds of Our Lord became visible on Padre Pio's body eight years later, thereby making him the first stigmatized priest in the history of the Church. For the next 50 years, until his death in 1968, Padre Pio passed his life in ineffable sufferings but with moments of great joy from his union with God

Saint Rita 

Famous as the patron of hopeless situations, St. Rita of Cascia is immortalized in this moving film about this beautiful woman who lived in Italy in the 14th century. Combines drama, love, betrayal, senseless tragedy, forgiveness and faith as it tells the story of this brave and loyal woman who married her knight, helped him overcome his dark past and convert to faith, happily bore him two children, and later endures immense pain as she loses everything in her life


The true story of a young immigrant priest, Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos [1819-1867], the Redemptorist missionary who was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 2000. Father Seelos possessed great mystical gifts due to his intense prayer life. His dedication to ministry with cheerful holiness makes him still an outstanding model for clergy, religious and laity alike. As an itinerant preacher and lifelong friend of the poor and destitute, Seelos was a spiritual Father to tens of thousands. Despite his early death at age 48, so profound was his missionary zeal that sickness, persecution, and even the upheaval caused by the Civil War, could not stop him

Saint Teresa of Avila 

A powerful epic mini-series shot on location in Spain that tells the story of one of the most amazing women in history, St. Teresa of Avila. With meticulous attention to detail and historical accuracy, outstanding production values, and an incredible performance by actress Concha Velasco as Teresa, this acclaimed major film production is the definitive film on the life of this great saint

Teresa of Avila Personality and Prayer 

Following up his popular series on prayer, Contemplation, Fr. Thomas Dubay presents a profound 13-program series on the spirituality and life of St. Teresa of Avila. As an expert on St. Teresa, Fr. Dubay gives an exciting portrait of the life and dynamic personality of this great saint, and an inspiring, practical presentation of Teresa's mystical prayer and contemplation, showing how we can imitate her prayer life

Mother Teresa 

A new movie on the life of Mother Teresa starring award-winning actress Olivia Hussey as the saintly missionary nun who brought hope, love and relief to the poorest of the poor everywhere. Portrays the multi-faceted character of Mother Teresa, including the shrewd diplomat, the determined missionary, the fearless superior, the deeply compassionate servant of the poor and the holy bride of Christ

In the Name of God's Poor 

Geraldine Chaplin gives an inspiring performance as Mother Teresa in this new drama on her life. Shot on location in Sri Lanka, this top-quality production gives an authentic, dramatic portrayal of this extraordinary woman who left the comfort of teaching in a Catholic school to dedicate her life to the dying and destitute in the slums of Calcutta

Mother Teresa 

This powerful and moving film is considered the definitive portrait of Mother Teresa. Shot on the run over a period of five years in ten countries on four continents, this award-winning film follows Mother Teresa into the world's most troubled spots. Experience how Mother Teresa transcends political, religious and social barriers with her works of love based on a deep faith in Christ

Mother Teresa: The Legacy 

From Emmy Award winning directors Ann and Jeannette Petrie comes Mother Teresa: The Legacy. The Official Film of the Occasion of her Beatification in Rome, the film contains new footage and interviews with one of the most beloved people of our time, Blessed Mother Teresa, and chronicles her on-going legacy

The Miracle of Saint Therese 

Acclaimed dramatic feature film made in France in 1960 that tells the story of the life of Therese of Lisieux from childhood through her death as a Carmelite nun at age 24. Film critics have called it “an excellent, reverent biopic” on St. Therese that accurately portrays the saint’s story and her unique spirituality in a very appealing performance by French actress France Descaut. Beautifully filmed in black and white

Saint Therese of the Child Jesus 

This definitive film, made in honor of the 100th anniversary of her death (1897), tells the story of the life of St. Thérèse of Lisieux from childhood to her holy death as a Carmelite nun. Filmed on location in France it gives her whole story through interviews, dramatizations, examination of her writings and extensive visits to her home and inside the Carmel at Lisieux. Commentary is provided by Bishop Guy Gaucher, the bishop of Lisieux


This film, directed by Leonardo Defilippis, tells the story of St. Therese of Lisieux, a young girl who fell in love with Jesus Christ and demonstrated a path of spirituality, known as the "Little Way", through the actions of unconditional love, human compassion, and selfless devotion to duty. Starring Lindsay Younce, this moving true story is told in an inspiring way that invites the audience to contemplate and apply such spirituality in their own lives

Therese: Living on Love 

St. Thérèse of Lisieux is the most popular saint of modern times, and her "little way" of love and confidence has great appeal to people everywhere. This new film explores why so many ordinary people are drawn to St. Thérèse. Journalists, scholars, psychiatrists, priests, nuns and scores of people from around the country reflect on her appeal and powerful message

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Christine Hirschfeld

I never intended to run a Catholic antiquities and book business. Not in a million years. As a cradle Catholic, I grew up in a house that was filled with Catholic images and sacramentals not to mention an abundance of excellent books provided by family members who worked in publishing houses famous for their Catholic catalogues. The beautiful images and concepts presented in those books certainly had their effect in enhancing my identity as a Catholic. As the years passed, even in the midst of very un-Catholic settings, I became a repository for my friends’ Catholic “found objects.” Eventually, I had a family of my own. We’re a small family. There are just three of us. And two of us were born with the “junk collecting gene.” Garage sales attracted us like a magnet.

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