For Reel

The Last Temptation of Christ (1988)
April 30, 2011, 10:56 pm
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: Martin Scorsese

The Last Temptation of Christ was a hugely controversial undertaking for Martin Scorsese, inciting protests after years of suspended development due to written complaints. It is unfathomable to think that an effort this confrontational will ever again be released by a major studio while the box office continues to reward the most generalized, guileless entertainment. The material that caused the most outrage was a lengthy hallucinatory sequence wherein Jesus, while crucified, imagines an alternate universe in which the devil (posing as a young girl) tricks him off of the cross and forces him to face mortality. Although, as a non-believer, I have no authority to speak about the legitimacy of this interpretation from a Christian perspective, I would think that, in humanizing Jesus rather than glorifying him to the extent of caricature, his redemption is rendered all the more profound.

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