Church is a comedy featuring two low-level criminals—Snapper, an alcoholic
atheist, and Kokomo, an agnostic searching for meaning in his life.
At the opening, the two friends bungle the robbery of a powerful crime
boss, Mustafa O’Neill, an Irish-American catholic turned Muslim. As
contrition for the crime, and to save their lives, Snapper tells Mustafa
of a new scheme that will net them a fortune: the kidnapping of a champion
show dog from a wealthy woman, Miriam Case. Mustafa agrees—on the
condition that they bring him the dog at midnight. Or else.
Snapper and Koko take refuge in the church across the street from Mrs.
Case’s home and plan the crime. While in the church, a young woman,
Robbie, enters. She is a devout catholic and works for Mrs. Case. But when
Robbie learns of the crime, rather than turn them in, she offers to help.
Robbie then proceeds to take over the operation, planning the crime
herself. This angers Snapper, who doesn’t trust her. Koko, on the other
hand, is smitten, and will follow her anywhere.
The kidnapping is attempted, and although Snapper and Koko get the dog,
they trip the house alarms, which alert the police. They scramble back to
the church for cover.
While there, Koko learns that Snapper has betrayed him, and is leading him
to Mustafa…and his death.
During the furor over this revelation, the police wheel a gurney from the
house holding the body of Mrs. Case. We learn that Robbie killed her and,
even more shocking, that Mrs. Case is actually her mother.
Koko turns against Robbie, which infuriates her. Already wracked with
guilt about her mother’s death, she steals the dog from the two men,
places him on the altar, and is about to sacrifice him.
Then, through the stained glass windows, a glaring light floods the
church, creating a kaleidoscope of colors and shapes--accompanied by a
thunderous roar. Robbie looks up at the light, mesmerized. She thinks it
is the light of God, and believes that he has come for her. She kills
herself rather than the dog.
Turns out, it was just the searchlights of a helicopter.
In the end, Snapper apologizes to Koko, says he will tell Mustafa the
truth, and deal with the consequences himself. Koko forgives him, but says
they will go to Mustafa together. Their relationship endures, and is
strengthened, due to the power of forgiveness and redemption.
2009 Kieran Angelini
All Rights Reserved