Who is the Messiah of Evil, really?
I think that there was a version of this that had Tom as the Messiah of Evil, posing as a stranger in the town. There are too many things going on that hint to this, one being that the Messiah shown in the 100 year old flashback is the same actor. We don't see his face clearly, but the build is the same and the style of dress is very similar. Then there's the supposed drowning with the later appearance of the Messiah coming out of the sea. It appears that at some point during production this was changed and several scenes were then shot to create the effect of Tom just being another normal person. But I think he was originally slated to be the Messiah with a surprise reveal near the end, and that was changed in the favor of leaving the Messiah character as surreal as the whole film, and unknown. Don't know which I'd prefer, but if it had been a more modern film, you can be sure the DVD would have the alternate version and labelled it either as Director's Cut or something. I think they now actually force the filmmakers to create alternate versions to pump up DVD sales, and you no longer see filmmakers complaining about the MPAA ratings much anymore since they know their cut will get on the DVD and be seen by more people than in the theater anyway.
Well, that's a different matter. Anybody else see the Tom as Messiah thing happening here?