curiosity doesn't always kill the cat


Hello everybody. I was wondering what kind of portrayal of Jesus Christ is shown here. Is it faborable? or perhaps antagonistic? I'm trying desperately to obtain a DVD of this movie but I haven't gotten very far, blockbuster isn't exactly the place to look for pasolini films and i haven't had a chance to check out ebay or amazon.com yet about it so any help would be much appreciated!

"No time for the old in-out, love, I've just come to read the meter."

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I just finished viewing this movie on Bravo cable TV (in Canada), uncut, widescreen. I am just so shaken up now! This is one of the most beautiful films I've EVER seen. I just saw "The Passion of Christ" last week, and "The Gospel of Matthew" beats the PANTS off The Passion if you ask me! It grabs you from the very first scene, with Mary, Joseph, and the angel Gabriel and I couldn't take my eyes off it. The actor playing Jesus is just wonderful: very strong and sure, determined and abrupt. Now I'm going to be searching out everything else by Pasolini. I don't know anything about the director's life or his beliefs, but what I saw in this film was definitely reverence for Christ and belief in the truth of the Gospel. See this film ASAP! Before Easter is over!

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It is absoluteley not true that Pasolini was an atheist. He was a Marxist and a devout catholic, and "The gospel..." is a reflection of just that.

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While I'm late responding (since I just found this board) I have this quotation from Pasolini himself at a 1966 press conference, "I may be an unbeliever, but I am an unbeliever who has a nostalgia for belief."

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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.

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I can really relate to that:)

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The Gospel According to Saint Matthew is indeed a wonderful film, but take care: many of Pasolini's other films contain graphic sex and violence, and several of them are rated NC-17. His final film, Salo or the 120 Days of Sodom, is quite possibly the most disgusting movie ever made.
It's hard to believe the same person made both movies. Maybe the fact that they were made 10 years apart explain it.

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Actually I want to respectfully disagree with you.

Salo might be the most disturbing film ever made but 'disgusting'? I don't think so.
The way Pasolini treats the material is right on the opposite spectrum of the visual falir associated with exploitative cinema, and yet, it has disgracefully been binned in the same category as those 'video nasties' of that period.

I can perfectly see these two films coming from the same author, as a matter of fact the definition 'two faces of the same medal' applies here like in very few other places.

If else, those few years between the 'Gospel' and 'Salo' have done nothing but pushing to the extreme Pasolini's "nostalgia for belief", and that inner despair shows in Salo like probably in no other work by any author of the 20th century.

But that's a long story.....

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Yeah Salò gets unfairly scrutinized in my opinion.

Too many people are blindsided by the "controversial elements" of it instead of focusing their attention on what the movie is actually about.

If you go to the board of that movie it seems allot of people watch it purely out of curiosity about the controversial scenes, and then lament about it afterwards even when they were perfectly aware of what kind of movie they were about to watch in the first place.

It's like allot of people watched that movie just because of the controversy around it, instead of watching it out of the desire of watching a good movie.

Zardoz (1974) has spoken!
My top 100 http://www.imdb.com/list/ls079512886/

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Is it faborable? or perhaps antagonistic?

If you are interested in a post-card version or a sentimentalized paean to piety than this is not it.

Every line of dialogue in this film comes straight from the Gospel and nothing is altered.

This is a film about Jesus as he is - a young man dissatisfied with the betrayals and hypocrisies of the authorities and the establishment and doing all he can to help his lot and change things.




"Ça va by me, madame...Ça va by me!" - The Red Shoes

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I think the portrayal of Christ is as a thinking man with passion. It is quite a neutral portrait even though the words of the man and the way they are spoken are passionate. What this Jesus lacks, which is a blessing, is the sentimentality and sense of pomp and importance so often imbued in a film about the man.

Movement ends, intent continues;
Intent ends, spirit continues

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