This TV pilot film was based on the "Father Dowling" character created (in the tradition of G.K. Chesterton's Father Brown) by Ralph McInery. Tom Bosley plays the good Father, who whiles away his off-hours by reading mystery novels. When a young millionaire entrepreneur turns up dead, the official verdict is suicide, but Father Dowling suspects murder. Dowling's allies include street-smart nun Tracy Nelson and dour housekeeper Mary Wickes; his antagonists include politician Leslie Nielsen and mob functionary Sada Thompson (Sada Thompson? The mob?) Fatal Confession: A Father Dowling Mystery was adapted from a McInery original by veteran mystery writer Donald Westlake; the pilot sold, and the resultant Father Dowling Mysteries series ran for two seasons.
~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide