Finally got to see the filmThe Passion of the Christ along with some friends from the church that I attend. I was very impressed indeed, and very moved. A lot of people are saying that the film is "an experience", and I can certainly identify with that. I was nearly moved to tears by the film. No film has ever touched my emotions with the power that this film has.
Unlike many other films, as soon as this film begins you are immediately drawn in with the tense scene in the garden of Gethsemane. In the cinema where I saw the film there were a group of noisy young men whom I thought may have disrupted the film. But even from the start, the film provided enough interest to keep the young men quiet. In fact, they were mesmerized throughout.
The scourging prior to the crucifixion was very painful to watch. Yes, most people who know the story realise that Christ was whipped, but I think the film brings this home in such a way that many may not have considered the full horror of. The film accurately portrays the brutality of 1st century flogging. It was a brutal affair. Some people have criticised Mel Gibson for the extreme violence, but this is how it would have been. It is about time that we have a film that shows this rather than the sanitized versions we have been so use to for so long now. Later on I was left to wonder about the men who must have did the flogging and crucifying as a regular job in the 1st century. What sort of people could do such a thing to people day in day out? They must have been extremely evil people, void of all human compassion.
Now that I have seen the film for myself, I cannot understand where all the fuss about the film supposedly being anti-Semitic has come from. Sure, the Jewish leaders who want to see the end of Jesus are seen as a cold, calculating, hypocritical bunch, but that is one group of Jews. They are in no way representative of alland I think that this is the impression that one is left with anyway. In fact, Jesus Himself was a Jew, as were all of His followers. The whole controversy about the film being anti-Semitic seems to me to be an attempt to cloud people's eyes to the true meaning of the film, which of course, is that Jesus suffered and died on a cross to take our sins upon Himself.
By far, the characters who come across as the most evil and cruel, are the Roman soldiers. The actors who played these roles did so very convincingly. In fact I thought that all of the actors, the costumes and the scenery were extremely convincing.
The alleged Catholic plot that some Protestants say is on the agenda is an exaggeration as well, I believe. There are a few Catholic influences, but nothing to make a real fuss about. It certainly won't make Protestant Christian rush out to the nearest Catholic Church to join up! The reason for this is that the whole focus of the film is on Christ and His suffering, not a Church.
One of the few criticisms I have of the film is when the raven claws at the eyes of one of the condemned men on the cross. Even though I suppose it is entirely possible that such a thing happened at crucifixion, I just felt that, in the light of the rest of the bloodshed, it was unnecessary. The timing also made it look as though God was throwing a quick temper tantrum against the thief.
All in all though, a powerful film. I was deeply moved by it and it affected me, emotionally, for a few days following. I would certainly go as far as saying that is the best film I have ever seen. Many people who have already seen it are saying that they feel as though they need to watch it again. I too have this same feeling. It is a film that touches you very deeply.
The Passion of the Christ - Official Site.
Jews for Jesus (on the Passion).
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