‘Scenes from an Empty Church’ Review: Cloistered Filmmaking

“Scenes From an Empty Church” stars three actors — Kevin Corrigan, Thomas Jay Ryan and Max Casella — who emerged as scene-stealers within the 1990s. But watching this proudly pandemic-shot and -set characteristic from Onur Tukel is like being returned to the locked-down days of 2020. In a decade, the movie will function a time capsule. But proper now, it feels redundant: a dramatization of arguments (about masks, the pandemic’s results on New York and the worth of applauding first-responders at 7 p.m.) which have circulated for too lengthy.

Most of the film is certainly set at a church — it was shot on the Church of Saint Michael the Archangel on West 34th Street — that has two monks: Father Andrew (Corrigan) and Father James (Ryan). An unseen third has died of Covid-19. The motion kicks off when Father Andrew meets up with a pal, Paul (Casella), who insists not solely on coming into the closed church, but additionally on going maskless, which upsets Father James.

Father James agrees to let parishioners go to separately below strict guidelines (“if they have a cough, send them off”). And as they arrive, the film more and more resembles a characteristic made solely to show that limitations have been no impediment. The stopgaps are merely a part of the drama. Paul Reiser, as Father Andrew’s dad, seems solely in video-chat.

“Scenes” has its moments, as any movie that sits Ryan and Corrigan reverse one another in a confessional would. But even particular results close to the tip play extra just like the response to a problem than a spark of inspiration.

Scenes from an Empty Church
Not rated. Running time: 1 hour 37 minutes. In theaters and obtainable to hire or purchase on Google Play, FandangoNow and different streaming platforms and pay TV operators.