This week brings you a review or a movie with no porn in it. Out of respect, we left the T&A off the frontpage this week. It'll be back next week, no worries.
Lots of comments about the movie, but not really that much by anyone who's seen it, obviously. Never has a movie been so misrepresented and vilified with no good reason. In fact, this may be one of the best movies ever made. The box office its raking in is really bumming out the detractors who aimed a lot of hate at Gibson. The elites on both coasts still don't get it that most people in mid-America 'flyover country' don't share their worldview, values nor disdain for religion. They are probably chalking the success up to the inferior intellilect of people who don't like seeing obscenity on commercial TV, who actually go do Church and believe in God, who are against gay marriage on moral grounds, who still believe in right and wrong, and who voted for George Bush. I don't know if this movie passing Titanic (which isn't out of the question) would convince them otherwise. I notice a lot of them are jumping on the Jesus bandwagon, after spreading lies and misinformation about this movie for months.
I went last night. All I can say is every review and criticism of this movie I've ever read if fucked. The violence is not extreme or gratuitous. It is appropriate and valid and in line with 6 years of catechism in Catholic grade school that I managed to absorb. There's nothing vaguely anti-Semetic, even less than any WWII movie is anti-German or any gangster movie is anti-Italian. The Jews come off very well in this movie, especially since the only heroes: Jesus, Mary, Mary Magdelene, Peter, the apostles, various members of the crowd and a couple High Priests- are ALL JEWISH for fuck's sake. The real villians are the brutish Roman soldiers. They tortured and killed for a living, it was their job to keep the peace by brutality and they had it, if not down to a science, down to a trade, like plumbing or carpentry. They are pretty workman-like about it. Plus they seemed to have a disregard for human life, which is understandable when you torture and crucify people as part of your daily routine. Jesus was just another madman/criminal to them. Anyone yelling 'anti-Semetism' is just looking for something to be offended about. Even Caiaphus is treated sympathetically, even moreso than history records I think.
This movie is a cultural phenomenon, so you can review it on several levels. As a movie, it works. It takes you back to that time, the use of the authentic language is valid and just right. British Shakesperean actors or even authentic ethnics just wouldn't have given as much weight to the words. It would have been 'acting'. Mouthing words we've heard a million times from the Bible "Father forgive them, they know not what they do" with all the thees and thous and other Olde English bullshit like Heston in Moses. This movie is real. You don't for a minute think "wow, great shot, nice cinematography there, the costume design is great, what good acting. It just is. This is a masterwork of direction. Everyone's performance is spot on tone and level, no hamming it up, even by baffoonish characters like Herod or Barrabas or brutal guards. Jim Caveisal as Jesus deserves the Oscar, but I bet he won't even be nominated. Its a sublime perfomance. The locations and sets, the costumes, the use of language, the way the story was told, everything just first rate. This is an EXTREMELY hard subject, you get these pretentious fuck directors saying "oh I just wanted to do justice to the book" about some trivial crap like Cider House Rules. This is The Book. Most people seeing this movie have not only memorized these lines, they've heard them their entire lives. This subject matter requires extreme sensitivity and respect. Gibson pulled it off. On every level, every portrayal and every line I think he did a fantastic job.
I do have to say Satan looks and acts a bit like Marilyn Manson, however.
This was the first movie I ever saw where it was packed, I am not shitting you, not one person talked during the movie. There was no restless moving around. I looked at people around me and they were all eyes glued to the screen. This movie is powerful. Many people were crying openly, and men were even tearing up. I was raised a Catholic, I believe this stuff and I'll tell you, I was choked up. I thought about religion and Jesus' sacrifice ni a way I hadn't since childhood, and I'm not a religious guy. The thing the liberals/atheists/Jews/scoffers don't get is that this is what Christians believe: Jesus died in a horrific manner to absolve mankind of its sins.
He was not just whipped. He was scourged. A scourge has hooks, pieces of glass and metal woven into the leather thraces. It rips the flesh from your body. This is accurately portrays. Deal with if fuckers, you didn't seem to have any problems with Hannibal disemboweling a police officer, cutting his face off then crucifying him in a parody of Jesus. But the actual portrayal of the Savior being tortured and crucified, this seems to be a huge deal. I was stunned, after all I'd read, that it WASN'T over the top. Its terrible, yes. But if you read the Bible and are a believer, its not out of line with what the Church has repeated for centuries. The difference is, this movie really brings it home to you. For once, I really thought about what the beating, the scourging, the crown of thorns, the crucifixion with nails in hands and feet meant. And what Jesus' sacrifice meant.
Another bullshit criticism is that it doesn't show us the Happy Jesus, just the Beaten Jesus. That's either a distortion and lie to belittle the movie, or the people repeating it are dense. For one thing, there are flashbacks of Jesus saving a woman from being stoned, from the Sermon on the Mount, the Last Supper, other vignettes, and no Angry Jesus like when he cleared the temple. Little scenes with his mother, Mary. Besides the fact, after surviving the most brutal treatment imaginable, hanging on the cross dying he fucking ASKS FORGIVENESS FOR THE PEOPLE WHO DID THIS TO HIM? How fucking much to do atheistic liberal fucks have to be slapped in the face with a message to get it? You don't get a message of peace and forgiveness here? Maybe if it was set to some Yanni music it would work for them, or set to a Daily Affirmation.
There is no reason for Jews to be bitching about this movie. None. Period. This is a contrived controversy. What those who are complaining seem to be saying is they have problems with the central tenets of Christianity, the divinity and passion of Jesus Christ. They have a real problem with historical fact of Jewish officials collaborating with Roman occupiers were complicit in condemning him to death. If there's any message here, its 1. that Jesus died to absolve Man of his sins, and those who took part in the events were simply acting out God's will, not their own, as Jesus plainly tells Pilate. No group of a few hundred Jews or Romans gets to claim the prize of "I killed Jesus" for good or bad. #2, the central message is "FORGIVE AND LOVE YOUR ENEMIES" not "GO OUT AND BEAT UP SOMEONE ETHNICALLY DESCENDED 4k YEARS AGO FROM THE PEOPLE N THE VICINITY OF WHERE I DIED".
And has there been one incident of violence attributed to this movie? There are movies where crimes and means of doing violence are plainly spelled out, and people act on them, but I don't think we're going to see anyone crucified in response to this movie. If you don't walk out of this movie wanting to be a little bit better person, you don't have a speck of hope of an afterlife, a supreme intelligence shaping our lives, and a deep set of moral roots. So you are liable to do something fucked up in any case.
It made me think about religion and the divinity of Jesus and a lot of stuff. I don't know if it will change my life, but it affected me more than any movie I've ever seen, I have to say. Hell, I might even leave the porn off the frontpage when I post this review
If you were raised in any type of Christian religion, or have any interest in Christ's life and martyrdom, I urge you to go see this movie. You won't be sorry. Don't be put off my all the negative crap put out by people who think that Islamists are merely freedom fighters and conservative Christianity is the real threat to world peace and freedom. They try to reduce Jesus to "a great philosopher and pacifist" when the central message and importance of Christianity IS the passion and death of Christ. Without that, the teachings are nothing but the ramblings of a deluded madman who thought he was the son of God. With them, it is the greatest single act in the history of humanity. Deal with that, Hollywood.
Amen. God be with you. The teen lez pix will return next week ;)