ANGEL IN GREEN
US, 1987, 95 minutes, Colour.
Susan Dey, Bruce Boxleitner, Milo O' Shea.
Directed by Marvin J. Chomsky
Angel in Green is a routine action telemovie. However, it is an opportunity to see Susan Dey as a nun. Sometimes she wears her habit, other times is in ordinary clothes (the setting is the mid-'80s). The film was made on the Cook Islands and is a co-production with New Zealand.
The film has a fictitious rebel group (somewhat akin to the rebels on New Caledonia in that period) and an uprising (echoes of a similar coup in Fiji in 1987).
Milo O' Shea has a guest role as the missionary priest. Bruce Boxleitner is the leader of a group of American military who occupy the island to protect the locals. Reminiscent of Heaven Knows Mr Allison and Sea Wife, he falls in love with the nun. He is the angel in green to protect the islanders.
1. Entertaining action telemovie? The life in the Pacific? Uprisings and rebels? Missionaries and celibacy?
2. The Cook Island locations, the tropical and jungle settings? The village, the school, the church? The action sequences? Musical score?
3. The title and the reference to the military officer, the Americans and their protection of the locals? Ann's final comments about angels and their guarding people?
4. The plausibility of the rebel group on a small Pacific island? The uprising? The violence? The reaction of the local people, young people being taken to join the rebels, the fighting and the bloodshed?
5. Anne and her work, the explanation of her background in America, not having been home for many years? Her collaboration with the priest? The soul sister on the island? Her appearance in habit, her appearance in ordinary clothes? Playing sport with the students, teaching them, supervision? Her friendship with the children, with the adults? The rebels and the uprising? The violence, the death of the priest? Her feeling she should stay? The arrival of the Americans? Working with them? Their surprise that she was a nun? Continuing her teaching? The attraction towards the officer? Their discussions, her birthday party, the swim? Kissing? The reaction of the other Americans? The rebels and the danger? The officer being wounded, caring for him, his death? Her staying with her vocation, her choice of vocation?
6. The priest, the elderly missionary, his parish work, helping Anne, with the people? The rebellion, his death?
7. The local people, the leadership, the island traditions, the civil war? The rebel chief and his madness? Taking the young boys and men away for rebel training? The life in the village, the life in the rebel camps? The invasion, the fights, the deaths?
8. The Americans and coming in, taking over? The officer and his leadership, the discussions of the men about Anne, the revelation that she was a nun? His attraction towards her, talking, the birthday party, the swim, his attraction and her resistance? The fight, his being wounded, his death? The angel in green?
9. The other Americans, their style, relationship with the locals, the local girl in love with the American soldier? Their participation in the battles?
10. Conventional action material? An exotic setting? The complication of romance, the nature of the commitment of chastity by the nun, her falling in love, her having to make decisions? (And the screenplay opting out with the death of the officer?)