The Passion of the Christ (Hearts) – Homework #3


I’ve never watched this film before and I’m not a religious person,  but I remember all the controversy that was talked about for this movie at the time of its release. It was highly criticized for its extreme and detailed violence, for not being nearly historically accurate and allegations of antisemitism. The film was so violent that critics cautioned parents to not bring their kids to see the movie due to the extreme scenes of violence throughout the movie. Some scholars defended the film saying it wasn’t meant to be historically accurate. The director, Mel Gibson, has said, “I think that my first duty is to be as faithful as possible in telling the story so that it doesn’t contradict the Scriptures. Now, so long as it didn’t do that, I felt that I had a pretty wide berth for artistic interpretation, and to fill in some of the spaces with logic, with imagination, with various other readings.” There were criticisms of prominent antisemitism content in the film before releasing, that the New York Assemblyman at the time told companies to not distribute the film because its “unhealthy to Jews all over the world”, according to Dov Hikind. Gibson was asked by Bill O’Reilly if his movie would upset Jews, he said, “It’s not meant to. I think it’s meant to just tell the truth. I want to be as truthful as possible.” I hope some day I can see for myself how extreme the violence is in this movie but it seems like this movie is type 5 of the most controversial movies of all time.

4 thoughts on “The Passion of the Christ (Hearts) – Homework #3”

  1. Quite the interesting choice, indeed. Thank you for mentioning the film was challenged with allegations of antisemitism, I was not aware of that at all. Also, I find it interesting from a political standpoint for it to be supported by Bill O’Reilly, as he is truly “right wing.” Though in alignment with “pure American Christian households” it is promoted by right wing extremists. this movie is me, to see it supported by right wingers, only exemplifies the glorification of violence, and war amid the political group. This parallel was indeed formed from your post, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

  2. Nice choice, and I agree as well this film always seems to be high on the list on top controversial movies. This film indeed does have a couple of prominent factors in which this film becomes troublesom for a mass amount of people. The film being anti-Semitic and inaccurately portraying the Jewish population, is completely disturbed. The use of mass amounts of blood and the extreme use of gore in the film is also a key factor to its prominence as a controversial film.

  3. I’ve never seen this movie but I can agree with you from what I’ve heard from people who I know that have seen the movie. They spoke to me about how the movie portrays idea’s a certain way that created a lot of backlash. I also agree with Alex, because I have seen some scenes where the blood and gore were very high. That would be controversial off the top no matter what kind of movie it is, depending on who you are.

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