The Passion of the Christ

Bottom Line: If you’re a “passionate” Christian, watch it immediately. Otherwise, skip it.

[in Aramaic] “Father, into your hands…I commend my spirit.” –Jim Caviazel as Jesus Christ

Directed by: Mel Gibson
Starring: Jim Caviezel, Maia Morgenstern, Monica Bellucci

This film has left me speechless, unsure of where to begin, so I’ll start off the review by quoting Roger Ebert, perhaps the most respected critic of today’s world. His review contains a postscript, part of which reads: “I said the film is the most violent I have ever seen. … The MPAA’s R rating is definitive proof that the organization either will never give the NC-17 rating for violence alone, or was intimidated by the subject matter.” Never before have I found the words of any film critic more agreeable. The MPAA gave this an R certificate “for sequences of graphic violence.” That alone sounds terribly harsh, but it’s not enough. I can’t picture from any angle why on Earth the MPAA would give this an R rating; it is near-constant torture. My best guess would be because of marketing purposes. Had this been rated NC-17, not nearly as many people would have gone to see it; not nearly as many people would have experienced Mel Gibson’s horrendously poignant film adaptation of the Gospel. Ironically, it is the highest-grossing R-rated film to date.

I can honestly say Mel Gibson is one crazy man. Whereas most other filmmakers would tell this story in a somewhat violent fashion, Gibson goes for the gold. His depiction is no less than a downright explicit tale of Jesus’ (portrayed marvelously by Jim Caviezel) crucifixion, from the Christian faith, starting with his final prayer at Gethsemane. Somehow, this film is the saddest and most moving I’ve ever seen. For any true Christian, every moment from the very beginning should build up tears.

It’s hard to call THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST a film, per se. Just about every film is watched for entertainment purposes. Unless you enjoy seeing the Lord of the Christian faith whipped and beaten to a pulp (and if that applies, I can’t help but to ask what is wrong with you), THE PASSION is in no way a good source for entertainment. It’s even bloodier than SAW, and more disturbing for any Christian. Also, if you are someone of a different religion, or just not really much of a Christian, do not watch this. You will more than likely hate it and possibly find it to be a blasphemous excuse for torture porn. (It’s not.) From the thorough speaking of Aramaic (with English subtitles, of course), to the stellar performance by Jim Caviazel, to the wonderfully accurate Oscar-nominated musical score by John Debney, it’s an A+ movie for anyone who appreciates the religion deeply.

5 thoughts on “The Passion of the Christ

  1. […] I’m guessing this one was meant for those who write the standard blog, because isn’t every review supposed to be helpful?  I guess I tried to help people in my review of The Passion of the Christ more than I usually do.  I wanted to make sure that all true Christians following my blog saw it and absolutely no one else did, because it’s not your general type of film. […]

    • Just saw your top 10 (or 12) list; I’m about to comment. And unless you are a true Christian and someone who can bear seeing Jesus Christ tortured, whipped, spat on, mocked, bloodied, scarred, and nailed to a cross (it gets endlessly graphic) for about 90 of the films 127 minutes, I wouldn’t recommend it all that much. You probably wouldn’t like it.

  2. Watched this a few years ago. I’m not religious at all, but the image of Rosalinda Celentano as The Devil still creeps me the f##k out. So incredibly violent. I may re-watch this for Good Friday. This and “The Last Temptation of Christ”.

    • I wouldn’t say I’m religious (meaning I don’t obsess over Christianity or go to three-hour church services and whatnot), but I find the religion quite important to me. I agree, Celentano (one of the many little-known names in this film) was great as the Devil. Very symbolic and disturbing. I could even eat throughout movies like SAW with gore and all, but I couldn’t with this, just knowing that the man being tortured was the one who Christians believe is our Savior. Luca Lionello was terrible as Judas; had the subject matter not been so intensely mature and thought-provoking, I would have broken out laughing because of how horribly he performed. (I would have mentioned that in my review, but I couldn’t find the appropriate spot.) I can’t imagine watching it every Good Friday, and it’s so violent I’m never going to watch it again unless for whatever reason I have no choice. I haven’t seen Scorsese’s Last Temptation yet, but I hope to at some point.

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