18 certificateThe Passion of the Christ is a Film programme that first aired in 2004 and has been classified a 18 certificate.

The Passion of the Christ is a 4 star programme

Image for the Film programme "The Passion of the Christ"

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The Passion of the Christ (2004)

Directed by
Mel Gibson

Mel Gibson's Oscar-nominated film is a dramatic, haunting and visceral telling of Christ's final hours and crucifixion, with James Caviezel as Jesus, Maia Morgenstern as Mary, Mattia Sbragia as Caiphas and Hristo Shopov as Pontius Pilate.

On its initial release in America, the film polarised the Christian and the Jewish communities. In some areas of America, the former contributed to an astonishing opening box office take of over $100m by pre-booking cinemas for their congregations (in Dallas, the film showed on a 20-screen cinema to over 6,000 viewers). However, the Jewish community, together with some other leading Christian churches, accused Gibson of anti-Semitism, citing the portrayal of high priest Caiphus as the true instigator of the Crucifixion rather than Pilate. However, in this country, reaction was more muted, concentrating on the critical rather than the religious points.

The film is undeniably violent - when the crown of thorns is rammed on Christ's head, it does not produce a few delicate streams of blood but a torrent - while the other brutalities He must endure are even more vicious, but within that frame Gibson and Caviezel manage to convey the character of Christ behind the pain. With a cast of almost all unknowns (only Monica Bellucci as Mary Magdalene is an experienced actress) and with dialogue in Aramaic and Latin, this is a testing film but one that, however visceral, is thought-provoking and memorable.

Preview courtesy of Channel 4

Written by ,

Genre: Film

Running Time: 150 minutes (approx)

Production Year: 2004

Rating:
4/5 Stars

Classification: 18 Certificate

Production Country: USA

Filmed in Colour

Cast

James Caviezel...Jesus
Maia Morgenstern...Mary
Hristo Jivkov...John
Francesco de Vito...Peter
Monica Bellucci...Magdalen
Mattia Sbragia...Caiphas
Toni Bertorelli...Annas
Luca Lionello...Judas
Hristo Shopov...Pontius Pilate
Claudia Gerini...Claudia Procles
Fabio Sartor...Abenader
Giacinto Ferro...Joseph of Arimathea
Aleksander Mincer...Nicodemus
Sheila Mokhtari...Woman in Audience
Lucio Allocca...Old Temple Guard
Paco Reconti...Whipping Guard
Adel Bakri...Temple Guard
Luciano Dragone...Second Man
Adel Ben Ayed...Thomas