IMDb > The Gospel According to St. Matthew (1964)
Il vangelo secondo Matteo
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The Gospel According to St. Matthew (1964) More at IMDbPro »Il vangelo secondo Matteo (original title)

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The Gospel According to St. Matthew -- Pasolini portrays a realistic and biblically sympathetic presentation of the Gospel.


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7.9/10   6,987 votes »
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Release Date:
2 October 1964 (Italy) See more »
The life of Jesus Christ according to the Gospel of Matthew. Pasolini shows Christ as a marxist avant-la-lettre and therefore uses half of the text of Matthew. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 4 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A Few Thoughts About This Different Kind Of Presentation Of Christ See more (59 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Directed by
Pier Paolo Pasolini 
Writing credits
Pier Paolo Pasolini 

Produced by
Alfredo Bini .... producer
Original Music by
Luis Bacalov 
Cinematography by
Tonino Delli Colli 
Film Editing by
Nino Baragli 
Production Design by
Luigi Scaccianoce 
Set Decoration by
Andrea Fantacci 
Costume Design by
Danilo Donati 
Makeup Department
Marcello Ceccarelli .... makeup artist
Lamberto Marini .... assistant makeup artist
Mimma Pomilia .... hair stylist
Production Management
Manolo Bolognini .... production manager
Eliseo Boschi .... production supervisor
Enzo Ocone .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Maurizio Lucidi .... assistant director
Paolo Schneider .... assistant director
Vincenzo Cerami .... trainee assistant director (uncredited)
Elsa Morante .... assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Dante Ferretti .... assistant production designer
Sound Department
Fausto Ancillai .... sound mixer
Mario Del Pezzo .... sound
Visual Effects by
Ettore Catalucci .... title & optical effects (SPES) (as E. Catalucci)
Camera and Electrical Department
Giovanni Canfarelli Modica .... first assistant camera (as Gianni Canfarelli Modica)
Vittorugo Contino .... assistant camera (as Victor Hugo Contino)
Angelo Novi .... set photographer
Giuseppe Ruzzolini .... camera operator
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Piero Cicoletti .... assistant costumer
Piero Farani .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
Andreina Casini .... assistant editor
Music Department
Luis Bacalov .... music arranger (as Luis E. Bacalov)
Other crew
Lina D'Amico .... script supervisor
Bruno Frascà .... production secretary
Vincenzo Taito .... administration inspector
Cesare Barbetti .... voice dubbing (uncredited)
Gianni Bonagura .... voice dubbing: Marcello Morante (uncredited)
Pino Locchi .... voice dubbing: Mario Socrate (uncredited)
Emanuela Rossi .... voice dubbing: Rossana Di Rocco (uncredited)
Enrico Maria Salerno .... voice dubbing: Enrique Irazoqui (uncredited)
Pope John XXIII .... dedicatee
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Il vangelo secondo Matteo" - Italy (original title)
See more »
137 min | USA:91 min (edited version)
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Shot in the style of Italian Neo-Realism.See more »
Anachronisms: When they are taking Christ down from the cross, in the distance you can see a car driving around a corner.See more »
Christ:Many are called, but few are chosen.See more »
Movie Connections:
GloriaSee more »


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27 out of 43 people found the following review useful.
A Few Thoughts About This Different Kind Of Presentation Of Christ, 8 July 2007
Author: ccthemovieman-1 from United States

I think I've seen most, if not all, of the movies dealing with the life of Jesus. (There haven't been that many.) This is without a doubt the most different presentation I've ever seen. It's oddly captivating because of the stark visual contrasts and the direct and different approach used by the director concerning the teachings of Christ. Instead of hearing Jesus' small sermons in context of where and when he said them, much of it is just a head shot of him and many of his comments are all lumped together. It's actually too much to take in at one time - many of Jesus famous statements and no time to digest any of them.

There are a few shots of Jesus performing miracles, intermingling with all kinds of people, must mainly it's a lot of His rhetoric with nothing in the background. It's as if they tried to cram as much as Christ's profound statements into the two-hour movie as they could, so they come rapid-fire. And, since the dialog is in Italian, you have to read all the subtitles to know what he's saying and they are printed in the King James English! That is difficult for most people today to understand, so it really is a must that you've already read the Gospels in modern translations to know what Jesus much of the time. That's because some of the King James words are not ones we are familiar with today, or they have the opposite meaning than they do today. Yet, saying all that, I still found this oddly fascinating and I am not complaining about how they presented it. However, I don't think it would win any converts because most secular viewers would be bored to death with this film. That, and all the King James English, make the sermons way too difficult to comprehend.

The film is slow moving in many spots and today's movie viewer would be challenged to stick with this for the full two-and-a-quarter hours. To be honest, this isn't what most people - believers and non-believers - would call great entertainment. If cinematography means something special to you, you'll like this film better than someone just watching for the story

I could also nitpick and make fun of how all the men's hairstyles looked in here, which was mainly 1960 Italian, not First Century Middle Eastern, but that's incidental. I thought Mary looked realistic and Jesus certainly was portrayed with an intense and captivating face. John The Baptist, by the way, immersed people in the Jordan River. He did not kneel on a boulder and pour a handful of water on their head, as pictured in this film.

Being that Pier Paolo Pasolini, the director and writer of this film, was a Marxist rebel, it's obvious he liked Jesus for His anti-establishment words. Jesus was the most radical man ever to step on this planet. Just read his words. He said things that really shook up people back then, and still do today. He was very tough on the Pharisees, the Jewish religious leaders of the day and you can tell the director loves that. I do wish, however, that Pasolini hadn't overemphasized that side of Jesus and neglected much of the Lord's warmth and compassion that is written about in all the gospels. In this film, Christ comes across as ultra-serious, a hard-nosed and often cold individual, and sometimes very judgmental...but read the gospels and you'll find him mostly the opposite.

The music in here was excellent. Playing the old Negro spiritual, "Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child" by Odetta, a few times was a very nice touch, and a profound statement at the same time.

Overall, I'm glad I finally was able to see this film. It was worth the time, and some of it is as interesting (and still Scripturally accurate) presentation of Christ I have seen on film, but I don't know if I watch it again......probably.

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