For my movie review, I watched Passion of the Christ, directed by Mel Gibson. I had not watched this movie before, but I would say this is one of the saddest movies I have ever watched.
It focuses on the last 12 hours of Jesus’ life, when Judas, one of his disciples, betrays him just for thirty pieces of silver. The guards arrest Jesus and while that is happening, another one of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, cuts off the ear of one of the guards but Jesus tells him to stand down. Caiaphas questions Jesus as to whether he is the Son of God (eventually he recommends Jesus to be put to death). Judas is then filled with remorse, tormented by demons, flees the city and hangs himself with a rope he finds on a dead donkey. Caiaphas takes Jesus to Pontius Pilate (the Roman Governor) and demands he be condemned to death, but Pilate finds no reason for Jesus to die. Pilate then gives the people a choice; set Jesus free or set Barabbas, a murderer free. The people ultimately choose Barabbas. Pilates then orders for Jesus to be crucified. When Jesus is crucified, he prays for forgiveness for those who did this to him. After he dies, an earthquake destroys the temple and rips the cloth covering the Holy of Holies in two. Jesus is then taken down from the cross and put in a tomb. In the end, he rises from the dead and leaves the tomb.
This movie was unlike any I had ever seen before. Even though it reflected on how Jesus was treated, it was one of the bloodiest movies you will ever see. For example, in the scene when Jesus is whipped, there was so much blood that it made me feel like I was getting whipped. Although the film was very violent, it did portray the story very well. It portrayed how Jesus was treated, what happened when he was crucified and what life was like back then. An interesting aspect was that the dialogue was in Aramaic and Latin (both no language in use) and not in English. Aramaic was the local language in Israel at the time Jesus lived while Latin was spoken by the Roman conquerors.
This movie depicts the passion of Jesus according to the New Testament Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. It is 126 minutes long, and I would guess that approximately 100 of those minutes deal specifically and graphically with the details of the torture and death of Jesus. Because of this focus on violence, and although it is an integral part of the Passion of the Christ, I would recommend that parents think twice before allowing children to view this film.
I feel that this film shows moments of great power with extraordinary images. However, I feel anyone not familiar with the underlying story and without an understanding of Jesus would find it hard to see the underlying message. Some of the scenes are particularly awkward, while others seem overwrought without the missing context. The violence is intended to be upsetting and is extensive, detailed, and literally painful to watch.
Despite all the violence that was in the film, I thought it was very good, portrayed the story of Jesus very well and I highly recommend watching it. The characters played their parts very well, and you will feel this pain while you are watching this film.