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Jim Caviezel, Monica Bellucci, Claudia Gerini, Maia Morgenstern, Sergio Rubini ... see more see more... , Toni Bertorelli , Robert Bestazzoni , Francesco Cabras , Giovanni Capalbo , Rosalinda Celentano , Emilio De Marchi , Francesco De Vito , Lello Giulivo , Abel Jafry , Hristo Jivkov , Luca Lionello , Jarreth J. Merz , Mat Patresi , Fabio Sartor , Mattia Sbragia , Hristo Shopov , Roberto Visconti , Giancinto Ferro , Olek Mincer , Adel Ben Ayed , Chokri Ben Zagden , Luca De Dominicis , Pedro Sarubbi , Francesco Gabriele , Ivano Marescotti , Romuald Andrzej Klos , Angelo DiLoreta , Ted Rusoff , Hristo Naumov Shopov , Richard Kiley , Christo Jivkov

Mel Gibson's well-publicized production The Passion of the Christ concerns the last 12 hours in the life of Jesus of Nazareth. The dialogue is spoken in the ancient Aramaic language, along with Latin ... read more read more...and Hebrew. In the Garden of Gethsemane near the Mount of Olives, Jesus (James Caviezel) is betrayed by Judas Iscariot (Luca Lionello). Jesus is condemned to death for blasphemy and brought before Pontius Pilate (Hristo Naumov Shopov), the Roman governor of Judea, for sentencing. The roaring crowd demand his death, so Pilate orders his crucifixion. Jesus is severely beaten and made to carry his cross up to Golgotha, the hill outside Jerusalem, where he is nailed to the cross. Romanian theatrical actress Maia Morgenstern plays Mary, Mother of God, and Italian superstar Monica Bellucci plays Mary Magdalene. Amid much controversy involving Gibson and various religious organizations, The Passion of the Christ received an international theatrical release in February of 2004. In March 2005, Gibson released an unrated version of the film, dubbed The Passion Recut, that eliminated five to six minutes of the more graphic scenes of flogging and crucifixion. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi

Flixster Users

80% liked it

366,901 ratings

Critics

49% liked it

267 critics

R, 2 hr. 7 min.

Directed by: Mel Gibson, Ferdinand Zecca, Lucien Nonguet

Release Date: February 25, 2004

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DVD Release Date: August 31, 2004

Stats: 31,470 reviews

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Flixster Reviews (31,470)


  • July 26, 2012
    Criative and the best work by Mel Gibson in direction. We could see that the actors, and Gibson and Fitzgerald are a moving and an unique portrait of Jesus Christ. I understand and support the criative expression of filmmakers, after all, it's the seventh art, I also understand, ... read morewhat Gibson try recreate and show to the audience. But when, he show Passion's message, all the gore violence obscure Jesus' last hours and Mel's attempt of evangelize flaw. The Passion of the Christ, it's one of the most controversal and hard-to-watch movie that I ever saw. Rotten.
  • May 21, 2012
    [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img]

    Mel Gibson is an amazing film maker, his direction and visual style is breathtakingly realistic but surprisingly he doesn't offer any primary lessons to this narratively flimsy but strangely overwhelming... read more story. What disturbs me the most about Passion of The Christ, other than the fact it's one of the most violent films i've ever seen and the subject matter at hand, is that I actually quite enjoyed it. From the technical side of things, it's breathtaking. The most being the incredibly done cinematography and Jim Caviezel's inspirational performance as the titiluar messiah. Jesus' torture I suspect will be difficult for some to digest but it is often exploitive to the audience as much as Christ. Due in most part to the fact it's a religious figure being tortured, and expecting us to know the back story already to establish an emotional connection without being given a character insight pre to the gory exploitation sequences. However even though the film has unbelievably very little substance, maybe it leaves the moral for us as an audience to decide, and I stand by my own opinion that it's a film about ambition and hope.
  • March 30, 2012
    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), T... read moreHE 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.

    http://themoviefreakblog.wordpress.com/2012/03/30/review-the-passion-of-the-christ/
  • March 27, 2012
    Passion of the Christ is actually an average film with good acting. I enjoyed the film, but didn't think it was a masterpiece. Jim Caviezel portrays Jesus Christ, and gives us a great performance. However the film is very violent as it shows the final hours in the life of Jesus C... read morehrist.. Compared to Gibson's Braveheart, The Passion of the Christ, this film is not as great as that one. Passion of the Christ plays out like a two hours torture flick more than anything. The film doesn't offer anything new in terms of telling is Jesus Christ's final hours, as we've all heard what happened a million time over. The cast do a great job, and the film is harrowing and difficult to watch. I liked the film, but I don't see it as a flawless film like so many people have seen this. The Passion of the Christ is a good film, but I felt that it was a hard film to watch because of the graphic violence. Despite my opinions on this film, I thought this was a well acted and directed film. For those looking for a good historical film, then this is your film. Passion of the Christ is a hard film to watch that is brilliantly acted, but as a whole, it didn't really stand out as an epic film. The film is worth watching, but like I previously stated, is one that will make you feel uncomfortable due to how violent it is. Not one of Mel Gibson's best films, but definitely not his worst, Passion of the Christ is a film that will have an effect on you no matter what religious convictions you have.
  • March 9, 2012
    Though I understand that "The Passion of the Christ" isn't exactly an accessible movie that delves into the reasons why Jesus endured what He went through, it convincingly shocks many audience members out of, what we conceive to be, a tired old repetitive story. This is the story... read more of the Lord, Jesus Christ, who endured one of the worst and most excruciating pain for mankind in order for us to be back with God. Mel Gibson thrusts the audience to true authentic realization of what Jesus went through. What I particularly liked about the movie were glimpses of events before the crucifixion that showed Jesus' character. It's cool to see Him in live-action form that is backed up by Scripture.
  • fb7018436
    January 5, 2012
    fb7018436
    Every christian in america was guilted into loving this movie. In reality it's nothing more than a well made slasher movie that focuses on all the wrong aspects of the story and leaves the audience feeling pressured that if they don't say they loved this movie then they hate Jesus.
  • fb100000257973100
    October 21, 2011
    fb100000257973100
    Before I deal with the hate mail I will get for giving this film such a low rating, I want to explain that this has nothing to do with me not being religious. In fact, one of the reasons why I watched this film is because I do have respect for religion due to how it has convinced... read more so many people to follow it's teachings and ways of life. The most beloved and controversial religion is Catholicism and it is all due to the man that this film is about: Jesus Christ. Jesus was a man who preached about world peace, love for everyone, and to fight and die for what you believed in. If you are going to make a film about Jesus, you make a film ABOUT what he was/ is (depending on what you believe) all about. Not about his death. Yes, his death was important due to that is what freed us from the chains of sin, but you just don't make a film about that. The reason why is because you go from making a film about his pain into a torture porn version of the story of Jesus that, is just not that good.
    As I have said, I am not that big on religion in terms of what I believe in. Yes, I did for about most of my childhood go to a Christian school where I had the story of Jesus shoved down my throat, so I am aware of the story. Back in 2004 when I first heard of this film, I was a bit skeptic because I did not want to even know about a film that glorified (or, in this case, gorified) Jesus. Well, a few years later in 2011 I decided to sit down and give this film a chance. I have seen many grotesque and violent films, but this is a film that has destroyed any message it tried to have and has turned it into a celebration of extreme horror and torture porn films.
    Mel Gibson is, without a doubt, a talented actor but a terrible director. I understand that he is a devout Catholic and believer of God (and has been known to make that public). For his love and belief in religion, I praise him for that. But, it is hard to do in this film when he clearly has the focus on the torture and nothing else. He has said that the point of this film was to show people what Jesus went through during each of the fourteen stages so that people will know what he died for. Now, that is a decent idea for a plot of a film if only we were able to focus less on the brutality and more on the meaning. Mel, you had great intentions, but you destroyed them with the desire to show blood, guts, and gore.
    Well, that is all I really have to say about this film overall. It basically had it's heart in the right place along with having acting that is superb and make-up artists that makes everything real to the eyes, plus sounds that will make you feel like you were there, but it just fails so much as the graphic violence over shadows the true meaning of the film. I say that if you are interested in the story of Jesus and if you are interested in what he died for, watch Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ and not this film. Or, just read the Gospels. But leave this film alone.
  • fb729949618
    September 30, 2011
    fb729949618
    Okay first of all, let me just say that I feel weird for reviewing this movie and giving it stars. Putting love and emotion for Jesus Christ aside and looking at the film for its technical aspects.....it is very powerful. The acting, sets, and camera angles capture the audience a... read morend grips them throughout the entire film. As sad as this film is, the events and the content of the film are historically correct, and Mel Gibson did an impressive job documenting those events.
  • September 27, 2011
    As a movie, this basically fails. It's ridiculously violent religious torture porn that willl seem pointless to those not into or familair with Christianity. In the right context though this film isn't too bad. It's not a materpiece, but as an "experience" it is a success.

    I th... read moreink it is overrated, even though it is powerful. Like I mentioned though, this is for a limited audience. It could be used as a conversion tool, but I don't know how effective or convincing it would be, as this movie isn't innocent of charges of brutality and anti-semitism.

    I do have a lot of respect for this though, mainly because it strives to show just how horrible and excruciating crucifixion is, and because they had the balls to have the whole thing be in Aramaic and Latin. That's just awesome, and deserves lots of kudos. It's also pretty realsitic in terms of physical, historical, and religious accuracy. It's not completely perfect in those regards, but it's not a work of total fiction and fantasy either.

    Caviezel has a tough role here, and he does a good job. It's not just screaming either. He's great at radiating personality, kindness, and turmoil. The other performances are also pretty good, but this is basically a one-person show.

    The camera work is really good, the locations and sets are terrific, and the effects are just outstanding. I'm amazed that Tom Savini didn't work on this, that's how realistic and effective the make up and gore is.

    Over the years I've gotten desensitized to brutality and gore, and have increased my tolerance for it, and, even though I was able to watch this without getting dizzy or faint, I'm not gonna lie and say that it didn't give me a headache or that I wasn't biting my lip at times. In context, this is basically the most violent film I've ever seen. Mainly due to the realism and emotional impact. This could basically pass for a horror film. Thank God that the Saw and Hostel films don't really make you care about the characters, cuz they'd probably be even more unwatchable.

    Say what you want about Gibson being all kinds of fucked up, but the man knows how to tell a good story and get a point across, even if subtlety is nowhere to be found.
  • June 7, 2011
    As a Catholic, I cried and shuttered as I watched Jesus 's suffering. The acting in this film is so amazing and unbearable to witness. The plot is based off the bible, and what detail does it bring to the big screen. The production must've been huge, cause its great. Its horr... read moreifying to witness, and sadly its all true.

Critic Reviews


Jonathan Rosenbaum
March 5, 2008
Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader

If I were a Christian, I'd be appalled to have this primitive and pornographic bloodbath presume to speak for me. Full Review

Wally Hammond
February 9, 2006
Wally Hammond, Time Out

A negative and spiritually underwhelming experience. Full Review

Stanley Kauffmann
March 18, 2004
Stanley Kauffmann, The New Republic

[Gibson's] film, virtually stripped of Jesus's incandescent views, is little more that a record of one of the thousands of barbarities committed by the Romans in Judea. Full Review

Rex Reed
March 4, 2004
Rex Reed, New York Observer

Mr. Gibson has gone to a lot of sweat and expense to make a movie that doesn't say much of anything new.

Andrew Sarris
March 4, 2004
Andrew Sarris, New York Observer

Whereas the words say love, love, love, the sounds and images say hate, hate, hate. Full Review

Michael O'Sullivan
February 27, 2004
Michael O'Sullivan, Washington Post

Puts us in a situation where we can't help but feel Jesus's pain. If only Gibson had taken the time to tell more of us why it mattered.

Stephanie Zacharek
February 27, 2004
Stephanie Zacharek, Salon.com

A very dour, pedestrian picture. Full Review

Scott Foundas
February 26, 2004
Scott Foundas, L.A. Weekly

A big, bold, nightmarishly beautiful film not just about the dawn of the Christian faith, but about the awful tendency of human communities (wherever and whenever in the world they may exist) toward s... Full Review

Phil Kloer
February 26, 2004
Phil Kloer, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

This is a movie so singular, so intense, so overwhelming that it simply has to be experienced. Full Review

Lisa Kennedy
February 25, 2004
Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post

A film of artistic ambition and devotion. Full Review

Critic ratings and reviews powered by RottenTomatoes.com

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Facts


    • Jesus Christ: It is finished.
    • Jesus Christ: My heart is ready.
    • Pontius Pilate: What is truth, Claudia? Do you hear it, recognize it when it is spoken?
    • Claudia Procles: Yes, I do. Don't you?
    • Pontius Pilate: How? Can you tell me?
    • Claudia Procles: If you will not hear the truth, no one can tell you.
    • Caiphas: I ask you now... Jesus of Nazareth. Tell us, are you the Messiah, the son of the living God? [everyone waits to hear]
    • Jesus Christ: I AM. And you shall see the son of man sitting at the right hand of the power of God... and coming on the clouds of heaven. [everyone becomes shocked]
    • Caiphas: Blasphemy! [tear his cloth in half] You have heard him, there is no need for witnesses! What is your verdict?
    • 2nd Elder: Death! Give him death! [everyone begins to beat Jesus up and spit on him]
    • Jesus Christ: Peter. [asking the disciples up] You could not watch one hour with me?
    • John: Master, what has happened to you? Should I call the other Lord?
    • Jesus Christ: No John. I don't want them to see me like this.
    • James: Should we flee Lord?
    • Jesus Christ: Stay here. Watch... pray.
    • Jesus Christ: Take this and drink. This is my blood, spilled for you and for many. Do this in memory of me.

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