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Monday, 23 July 2007 19:21

A Glance at the Controversial Movie "The Passion of the Christ"

Last week the Oscar ceremony was held in Los Angeles at a time when the controversial movie “The Passion Of The Christ” broke the sales record of the film “Lord of the Rings” the main winner of the Oscar ceremony.

The controversial film directed by Mel Gibson with a 125 million dollar sale in the first five days has been one of best sellers in the recent years and this comes under circumstances when comments from all over the world continue opposing or confirming the film content. The last comment was made by the Famous Italian Director, Franco Zefireli who has made many religious films.

In a comment, Zefireli described Gibson as bloodthirsty and objected to the scenes of violence and bloodshed. On the other hand, kevin Castner one of the Hoolywood actors in supporting Gibson called on critics to put end to their accusations. The critics too have contradictory views towards the film. Whereas, the famous critic of the daily Chicago Sun Times describes the film as the most precise and realistic film he has watched so far. These dual comments seriously continue among western religious circles. A number of the circles affiliated to the extremist Jews have severely criticized the film and called for banning its screening since the movie blames the Jews for the crucifixion of the Messiah.  But the supporters of the film say that the screening of the film has become possible after it was displayed to the Vatican cardinals and confirmed by them. But all what is concluded is the people’s curiosity for watching the movie and its increasing sale in different countries. This movie is now being displayed in 2800 cinemas of the US and it will soon be screened in Europe. Exactly, a decade ago at the peak of depression and addiction, after a temptation to commit suicide, Mel Gibson turned to the Bible and cited this book as the reason for his salvation. Following this, for years he was thinking of producing a film about the life of Christ (PBUH) until some years ago by spending 25 million dollars of his personal capital he provided the preliminaries for the production of the movie 'The Passion of the Christ.' The film illustrates the story of the last 12 hours of the life of the Messiah who according to the Christians has been crucified. Gibson who is the Director, Producer and one of the Scriptwriters of the film is a conservative Catholic who says he is fully binding to the Bible and that’s why he has been supported by the Christian societies. The language of 'The Passion of the Christ' is a mixture of Latin, Hebrew and ancient Aramaic language with English subtitles. It is said that the film has been given an R rating for screening in the US and this is because of its violent scenes. This is one of the causes behind the opposition to the film’s screening. One of the film’s spectators says: “The Passion of the Christ' is filled with blood and bloodshed and I think this is Gibson’s comprehension of film-making. “ But film directors believe that what has been illustrated in this movie is based on the realities and scripts of the Bible and that the Jews during the lifetime of the Christ were actually as cruel as is seen in the film. The director’s comments created another wide scale opposition toward the movie. This time the opponents of the film are the Jews who say that the movie introduces them as the killers of the Messiah. These pressures forced the director to eliminate one of the important scenes of the film. In this scene soothsayer Kaina speaks of the Jews’ responsibility for the Christ’s crucifixion. But Gibson while defending the violence in the film says: “This violence in the movie is aimed at awakening the audience who are on the edge of collapse. It was essential for them to realize the glory of the Christ’s sacrifice in the final moments of his life. “ A Christian priest comments about the film and says: "According to the Christians the many hardships that the Christ has witnessed in his short life is the identical manifestation of the sufferings and oppressions enforced against the sound human beings during history." But an extremist leader of the Zionist regime has demanded a ban on screening 'The Passion of the Christ'. He says that, "the film provokes hatred against Jews and in view of the religious crimes leveled against them; at least it should not be displayed in Palestine." Vis-à-vis all these remarks, the Press Advisor of the Leader of the World Catholics, Pope Jean Paul the second said: “According to us the 'Passion of the Christ' is not against the Jews. We should not forget that Messiah (PBUH), Hazrat Mary (PBUH) and the disciples were first Jewish.” Apart from all these controversies what one can say about the film is the following points: First the watching of this film by any viewer reminds the savage and inhuman methods of the Zionists against the defenseless people of Palestine. That’s why the Zionists have opposed the screening of the film and made severe criticisms of its directors. The Passion of the Christ conveys the message that in the same way the Christ has fought against the tricks of the Romans and Jewish soothsayers, the Palestinians have a similar fate. The most important cause for the Zionist regimes’ opposition to the screening of the film is because the director has succeeded to some extent in realistically illustrating the tortures enforced against the Christ and to show indirectly to the viewers the mistreatment of the other prophets and the oppressed nations. Another reason is because the colossal sale of the film brings a colossal wealth to Gibson; an important characteristic for a high sale is the controversial nature of the film and if the movie is faced with a vast welcome by the spectators, definitely the situation of the director in Hollywood will become stronger than the past. Thus, we see that contrary to what is said that Gibson has produced 'The Passion of the Christ' from his pocket and for his heart, this movie has had a calculated planning and screening. But the last point about the film is that it does not have a realistic end and contrary to the opinions of its producers it is not in accordance with reality. The movie ends with the crucifixion of Jesus (PBUH) and this is a point, which needs pondering. For, the crucifixion of the Christ has been distorted in texts and is not acceptable in terms of historic and religious reality. Whereas, this great divine prophet was rescued from the enemies of God and was concealed from people but one day he will turn back. In the Holy Quran, Ayahs 157 and 158 of Surah Nisa we read: “And their saying: Surely we have killed the Messiah, Isa son of Marium, the apostle of Allah; and they did not kill him nor did they crucify him, but it appeared to them so (like Isa) and most surely those who differ therein are only in a doubt about it; they have no knowledge respecting it, but only follow a conjecture, and they killed him not for sure. Nay! Allah took him up to Himself; and Allah is Mighty, Wise.”

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