Movie Review: 'The Man from Rome' Starring Richard Armitage

The Man from Rome La Piel del Tambor Richard Armitage Father Quart Amaia Salamanca Macarena Bruner Screen Media
Courtesy Screen Media

Now in theaters and available on demand, “The Man from Rome” spins a web of intrigue amid cloistered politics. Richard Armitage (“Obsession”) stars in this dramatic caper as Father Quart, a priest and investigator for the Catholic Church with his own mysterious past. Fresh off a tragedy, Quart is tasked with investigating a hacker’s ominous message to the Pope.

Quart’s mission takes him to Seville, Spain, and plunges him into an escalating conflict involving an old church and much more. In a personal aspect of his odyssey, Quart develops a bond with the enigmatic Macarena Bruner (Amaia Salamanca, “Gran Hotel”). Macarena’s family owns the church at the heart of the battle with the Vatican. 

Add in her manipulative ex-husband, and another spicy ingredient is added to an already robust recipe.

The tentacles of “The Man from Rome” and the ever-expanding conspiracy at the center of it go deep. For those who have watched the 2022 docuseries “The Vatican Girl: The Disappearance of Emanuela Orlandi,” none of the movie’s suggestions will be shocking. 

What “The Man from Rome” intimates is a story that strikes with more authenticity than many might have guessed in 1995. That is when the movie’s source material, Arturo Pรฉrez-Reverte’s novel “The Seville Communion,” was first published. Before and since then, a lot has happened in front of (and undoubtedly behind) the Vatican’s closed doors.

Truth Meets Fiction

To its credit, “The Man from Rome” script touches on the numerous modern scandals that have rocked the Catholic Church. There is no stone left unturned. There are many moving pieces and beautiful locales, and its dialogue proves critical in unraveling the mystery. It warrants two viewings to keep track of it all.

At 1 hour and 40 minutes, director Sergio Dow has to breeze through numerous blind alleys and informative passageways in search of the truth. Richard Armitage’s screen presence helps usher viewers along on Quart’s journey as it ebbs and flows. Considering the weight of the mystery, it is tricky for the characters to receive as much dynamism as they deserve.

The Cast

Richard Armitage and Amaia Salamanca lift their characters off the page as best as possible. Once you learn more about Quart and Macarena -- Armitage and Salamanca, let their soulful colors seep into view. Both actors are excellent choices to lead the film, and seeing them work opposite each other is fun. 

From the Medici to the Borgias, non-fiction to fiction, there has been no end to viewers’ fascination with the inner machinations of the Roman Catholic Church. “The Man from Rome” provides another intriguing chapter that will hopefully inspire those watching to dig deeper into what they learn. A certain man from Rome would probably want it that way.

Now that you have read my verdict, here is what you need to know. “The Man from Rome” is now in theaters and available to stream on demand. You can watch the trailer below:

“The Man from Rome” Viewers Will Also Like:

- “The Wrath of God” ๐ŸŽฌ for a tremendously told winding mystery ๐Ÿง

- “The Legacy of the Bones” ๐Ÿ” for another Spanish mystery with a religious context

- “The Vatican Girl” ๐Ÿ“บ docuseries on Netflix will help you understand “The Man from Rome” from a different perspective.