Thursday, October 28, 2004

The Passion of Christ

I watched The Passion of Christ over the last couple of nights.
No, I do not make a habit of watching movies split over nights. But this time, the er.. brutality was way too much to handle at one sitting.

Admittedly, it is like no other movie I have ever watched before. I abhor violence -especially of the mindless variety. And if it had been any other movie I'd have walked out of the theatre or plain switched off the TV. But I did not do that this time. Or rather, I did turn off the TV. But switched it on again the next night. I kept coming back to that brutality, as if transfixed by the violence.

What amazed me completely, was the way I was convinced -right through- of the reality of the scenes unfolding in the movie. With violence, I generally feel a sense of distance. I guess it is one way I handle what happens on screen - with the sheath of disbelief. But this time, the Roman/Jewish violence WAS so believable. And I do not mean only the lashings or floggings. The swell of hate from the Jewish mob waiting to condemn Jesus of Nazareth, nearly brought my dinner up.

Why was it believable? Perhaps, because Christ himself was so much more believable! Despite all his passion and new found evangelism, Mel Gibson, still manages to give me Christ who is more human; Mary, who seems more mother-like while looking angelic; Mary Magdalene fresh, young and sorrowful; Peter, disgusted with his own betrayal. Except for the single event where Jesus restores the severed ear of the Roman soldier, he is beaten, battered, crucified, nay, slaughtered, certainly no prophet, no miracle maker.

Therefore, while I cringed at the violence and shook with the impact, I still thought it was the classiest film on the passion of Christ I've ever seen, or will see. After 17 years of convent education, which gave me ample time to study Christianity in the appropriate atmosphere, I'm convinced Mel Gibson brings us closer to what could have happened to Jesus Christ. Had Jesus Christ ever happened at all.



Blogger TOL said...

HI Ramya
Came here hopping from one blog to another:)
No doubt The passion of Christ is one of the best directed movies that I have seen in a long time, but after watching it, all I could think of was, What is the point of the movie? Why do u have to show someone being horribly tortured for 2 hrs and make people feel sick?

3:16 am

Blogger saranyan said...

good blogging. came across ur link from Hari's.

I'm not a great fan of Mel Gibson, primarily due to his passion for bloody stuff.
also I personally feel that it is generally not good to exploit people's sentiments by analyzing sensitive stuff that happened in the past ... for eg: chirst's crucification.
same applies to Kamal's and Manirathnam's exploitation of the hindu-muslim clashes.

check out my blog too :)

5:50 am

Anonymous Anonymous said...


You must watch the film from the moral i.e. get the story out of it.

Just don't forget Jesus

1) Was a Jew and since Israel was under Roman Rule a Roman also. Therefore Jews/Roman killed one of their own people
2) At least Jesus followed his own teaching, he practiced what he teached.
3) For non-believers, he is an example to follow since he stood for what he believed in without killing other people in the process like some extremist people do.

11:52 am

Blogger hari said...

Hi Ramya,
yes, it was a nice realistic movie. And the torture of Jesus Christ was only a depiction of what is to happen in this world of ours in the future, when religious fanatics would become so blind with their beastly attitude that they would fail to recognise the God or the supreme power of their religion itself.
That is what is happening all around us, today even if Lord Ram comes and tell he does not want a temple at Ayodhya, certain leaders would either banish him or kill him to enable build his temple.

12:35 pm

Blogger None said...


u bet they'll kill lord ram!


12:58 pm

Blogger None said...


I guess I've heard those comments about The Passion as well. Movies do different things to different people, we react differently.
I have to agree with you about mindless violence, esp with refernce to maniratnam and kamal. But I dont feel the same about The Passion... for whatever reason. I'm not saying I understand this completely. In fact, I'm stumped by my response too.

Am chking out ur blog!


1:41 pm

Blogger None said...

thanks for stopping by!
if we begin to ask what the POINT is, with movies, I guess most times we'd just have an answer in the negative. :)


1:43 pm

Blogger S.Karthik said...

Of course, Passion of Christ is gory but what i really liked about the movie was that voilence was not without a reason.

To me the point of the movie is that Jesus endured the pain or rather the pain did not matter to him. Also, third degree torture was very much in practice those days.

1:56 pm

Blogger Parii said...

The movie moved me much :)

Both in terms of technically great, and in realizing what Jesus must have gone through, and how minute our own troubles seem in comparison!

5:42 pm

Blogger None said...


did you know? the Pope said the film moved him too! :)


7:28 pm

Anonymous Anonymous said...

how did it move you.. for good or for bad?

9:40 pm


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