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Deliver Us from Evil




"Deliver Us from Evil" might sound like a schlocky horror flick, but this 2006 Oscar-nominated documentary actually wades through realities far scarier than any B-movie. Director Amy Berg examines the Catholic priest sex scandal by zeroing in on disturbing saga of one pedophile priest, Father Oliver O'Grady.


A serial predator whose youngest victim was 9 months old, O'Grady preyed on children for more than 20 years thanks to the inattention and outright protection of higher-ups in the church. Berg visits with O'Grady's victims and their families, but she goes a step further and speaks candidly with the priest himself, who currently is living freely in his native Ireland.


The documentary is not always easy to watch, but it is unflaggingly sensitive and provocative. "Deliver Us from Evil" ultimately challenges some tenets of the church, especially the priesthood's vow of celibacy and a hierarchical structure that deflected scrutiny. But the filmmakers don't pretend to have easy solutions in this challenging, brilliant work.


"?Phil Bacharach


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