23 years ago, Disney released one of the best movies of the early 90’s. Before I saw Sister Act, like most people, I imagined Nuns to be boring, old, and depressing looking ladies. But since Sister Act, I now think of Nuns as I would anyone else. I love the thought of picturing a mature Nun with headphones and listening to her iPod. Thanks to Sister Act, most poeple’s perception of a Nuns life probably changed after seeing the movie and encouraged them to think more positively towards Nun’s and their lifestyle.
Who would have thought a movie about singing nuns would be such a hit?
When a Reno lounge singer, called Deloris Van Cartier, witnesses her boyfriend killing someone, she has to go into witness protection. And where better would you be protected than a Church, and pretending to be a Nun!
Deloris, now known as Sister Mary Clarence, doesn’t seem to understand how to behave like a Nun, and luckily for her, she gets the opportunity to be in charge of the Church choir. Being a singer herself, this is the perfect role for Sister Mary Clarence. And of course she turns the choir from a dull, boring, out-of-tune group of ladies, into an up-beat, happy, gospel choir!
The singing bits of the film, of course, are my favourite. Every time I watch the movie I get goosebumps, and I remember how surprised I was the first time I watched the movie, and heard the music. And in the “I Will Follow Him” scene, two figures can be seen standing at the back of the church that appear to be Jake and Elwood Blues. A tip of the cap to the Triple Rock Baptist Church scene in The Blues Brothers. Another favourite of my mine. (And the music is brilliant too)
Even though it’s not traditional gospel, it gave me the encouragement to listen to that genre of music, which I’ve grown to love listening to.
My sister and I, along with other family members, performed “Oh Maria!” and “I will follow him” in front of family and friends many years ago. You see, my mum’s side of the family, always threw a “family party” January 1st, to celebrate the New Year with all of their family and friends. It started of small, but quickly grew over the years, especially when the grandchildren got involved. My mum made all the costumes, my auntie Isobel did the coreography, and we sang our hearts out!
Me and my sister, and our mum (top right)
The movie has since been turned into a stage musical. For a short period on the West End, in London, Whoopi Goldberg appeared in the musical, only this time as Mother Superior! The musical has broken records, been nominated and won awards, and has been a huge success both in the West End and on Broadway.
In 1993 they followed the success of the first film with a sequel, which again, has memorable scenes, and stars Lauren Hill. But Sister Act was, in it’s own right, an original. Now, a classic Whoopi film, it will always be part of my childhood. It doesn’t need to be re-made, or modernised. You put it on now, and I guarantee you will enjoy it as if it was made today.
I am going to leave you with the end scene of the film, and one of the best bits…
Sister Jamie Margaret
Originally posted NOV 20TH 2015 on previous website