Based on a concept album project written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, and the subsequent long-running Broadway performance, this film tells the story of the final 6 days in the life of Jesus Christ through the troubled eyes of Judas Iscariot. Too often mis-labeled a musical, this film is a "rock opera." There are no spoken lines, everything is sung. Written by
Ralf Southard <email@example.com>
In the scene where Pontius Pilate first meets Jesus Christ, Barry Dennen had difficulty climbing to his spot on top of the hill, due to a scraggly path and ill-fitting shoes. Seeing this, a burly grip threw the actor over his shoulders and carried him up the hill. Director Norman Jewison then called from below for Dennen to come to the very edge of the cliff. (Recounted in the bonus segment of the Superstars (2015) documentary.) See more »
After Jesus finds his apostles asleep, the camera cranes up next to the leaves of a tree. At one point (about 1:00:48 on the DVD) one of the tree twigs swings back and forth rather unnaturally, indicating that the camera has brushed against it in the process of going by. See more »
[Jesus' parting words to the disciples]
Put away your swords! Don't you know that it's all over? It was nice but now it's gone. Why are you obsessed with fighting? Stick to fishing from now on!
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I saw this film for the first time in the mid 70's at a cinema on a school organised outing, I remember being peeved as it was being shown on TV for the first time the same evening. I was aware of one or two of the songs but I had never heard the original concept album before hand so I really had no idea what to expect. I was transfixed from the Overture to the End Titles and probably have not had a more moving experience watching a film since. I have been a devoted fan of this film now for over 25 years and still find the occasional viewing moving. The film was unique, the first Rock Opera given the Big Screen treatment and this is still in my opinion the best of its genre. Of course the Music and Lyrics are the fulcrum of the film and the numerous album recordings are still popular now because the songs are so unforgettable but the performances of all the principle characters in this original film version give this interpretation a dynamic edge. All the cast probably give their definitive performances but without any doubt Carl Anderson as Judas is the real KING. Rest In Peace. For all you long term fans like me get the new Region 1 DVD special edition with improved sound and picture quality and extras especially the commentary with Norman and Ted- you'll cry your heart out. Thanks Carl, I will never forget the impact your performance has made on my life. Thank you ALW, Tim Rice and Norman Jewison for an unforgettable Spiritual experience.
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