Yeah, Pasolini was an atheist. Hard to believe, isn't it... due to the fact that both the catholic church AND atheist film critics tend to agree that is the most compelling and favorable portrayal of Christ ever to be put onto film.
I think it makes sense, in a way. Pasolini simply allowed himself to interpret the power of the gospel free of any sort of devotion to the church or to dogma. Marxism definetely comes into play as well though, which a lot of christians all over the world have a problem with, that eventually leads those who follow either the dogma of marxist political groups or orthodox/fundamental christians to bicker over the film. It's a shame because this film is the only one I can think of that manages to celebrate the wisdom of both Christian and Marxist ideology simultaneously without detracting from either. Pasolini's portrayal of Christ as an unwavering, uncompromising champion of Good is both Christian AND Marxist...and suggests that it is only when people compromise what they know to be right, whatever side they are on, does struggle and pain and wrongness come into play.
What a flic.