**MY REVIEW OF THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST**
Of everything I've read concerning the Passion of the Christ, this story from Townhall encapsulates the real story here, check it out.
I, personally, liked the film a lot. It's not my favorite movie ever made and for good reason, it shouldn't be. Put simply, this is the most important film ever made. This is the type of movie that will change people's lives, it shouldn't be given a title as pithy as "my favorite movie ever". I found the violence hard to take at times, but that was Gibson's whole point in making the film. To push the viewer to the very edge of their capacity to view the violence and torture which Christ endured to defeat Satan and the World's sin. This is a film made for Christians, especially those who understand the context of the final hours of Christ's life, as well as who have read the entirety of the Gospels.
Lockwood, over at the The Backer , didn't like the liberties taken by Gibson in the scenes with Judas or the Satan figure in the movie. Oddly enough I found these two aspects most intriguing: demons which plague Judas, ultimately driving him to his own suicide, as well as the ever present sexually ambiguous character of Satan always lurking in the backdrop. For anyone who has read the Gospels, especially today's Gospel Luke 4:1-13, they know of Satan's temptation of Christ during Jesus's 40 days in the desert. And what does it say at the end of the passage: "When the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from him for a time."
This is the temptation of Satan over the human part of Christ. Just as in The Last Temptation of Christ, as in the opening of the Passion, the devil tempts Christ during his agony in Gethsemane. Trying to convince Jesus that one Man alone cannot bare the burden for all of humanity's sin, here we see that Satan has returned to Christ, just as the Gospel has said he would following Jesus's 40 days of fasting and prayer in the desert. And just as in The Last Temptation of Christ, the Satan character in Gibson's The Passion appears at the crucifixion, ready to take the cup away from Jesus. But Jesus defeats Lucifer, much to the devil's chagrin in one of the final scenes, signaling the triumph of good over evil, the defeat of sin, signaling the coming of the Kingdom of Heaven.
I can't really speak as an expert of film to analyze artistically if the film was good or not, as far as I'm concerned it was. You can't really tell that the film wasn't even filmed in Jerusalem, and I especially loved the opening scene when Gibson pans down from the ominously full-mooned night sky, to the Garden of Gethsemane because it really does look just like that, down in the Kidron Valley, which is often filled with fog during the night. I also thought the hammering of the nails, the symbolic scene of God's teardrop falling from the sky, as well as the final "Pieta"-ish final scene which pullsback from Mary holding her fallen son, all to be extremely well done.
As far as the film being anti-Semitic, that's laughable. Anyone who thinks this film is anti-Semitic either hasn't read or doesn't understand the Gospels. If anything the Romans, not the Jews, are portrayed as the real killers of Christ, but that doesn't even matter because the reality of Christ's redemption is that we're all responsible for it, I am just as culpable as the Jewish High Priest or as Pilate was.
At any rate I think who ever goes to see the film will take away whatever baggage you take into it. If you think it's anti-Semitic going in, then you'll think that coming out. If you think it's too violent going in, then you'll think that going out. Bottom line is this is a necessary movie, the most graphic and realistic portrayal of the indignities that God suffered to save humanity. I especially liked the Catholic elements of the film, the flashbacks to the Last Supper, the distinctly Catholic Stations of the Cross (Veronica wipes the face of Jesus, weeping Women of Jerusalem). I would advise any Christian 12 years of age and up to see it, I think it will only make your faith stronger and help you to really understand the sacrifice that was made for us.