Epic account of the thief Barabbas, who was spared crucifixion when Pilate manipulated the crowd into to pardoning him, rather than Jesus. Struggling with his spirituality, Barabbas goes through many ordeals leading him to the gladiatorial arena, where he tries to win his freedom and confront his inner demons, ultimately becoming a follower of the man who was crucified in his place. Written by
Italian censorship visa # 36131 delivered on 19-12-1961. See more »
The knives on the wheels of Torvald's chariot appear and disappear. See more »
Gladiator Barabbas, you're becoming quite a legend among us, I hear. For your remarkable persistence in life, we have a traditional answer to this public acclaim. We make you a free man. We give you your liberty. Here is the symbol of your freedom!
[holds up a carved staff for everybody to see, then tosses it into the arena next to Barabbas' feet; he picks it up and slowly exitst the Coliseum]
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An Intelligent, Sane, Thoughtful, Moving Film: Mel Gibson Had Nothing To Do With It
This is a first-class, reverent film that doesn't fall into Hallmark-card empty kitsch on one hand, or Mel Gibson's sado-masochistic porn on the other. This movie does not insult the subject-matter or the audience, and that's rarer than we might like.
Special credit goes to Aldo Tonti's Rembrandt lighting, consistently a joy. Mario Nascimbene's musical score rises above his usual brutality to real eloquence. The acting is without weakness, Quinn, Borgnine, Jurado and Andrews putting aside their sometimes numbing predictability for this special occasion. Richard Fleischer's direction is punchy without being vulgar, serious but not ponderous.
There are some awful religious films out there. This is thankfully not one of them. It's definitely worth the viewing for Christians and non-Christians alike.
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