The carpenter, Jesus of Nazareth, tormented by the temptations of demons, the guilt of making crosses for the Romans, pity for men and the world, and the constant call of God, sets out to find what God wills for Him. But as His mission nears fulfillment, He must face the greatest temptation; the normal life of a good man. Based, not on the Gospels, but on Nikos Kazantzakis' novel of the same name. Written by
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Reportedly, a church group offered to buy up all the prints of the picture for $10 million. Moreover, Campus Crusade for Christ's Bill Bright wanted to buy the negative of the picture from studio Universal Pictures so that it could be destroyed for good. See more »
The state of Mary Magdalene's robe when confronted by Jesus at the beginning. See more »
You had orders to kill him and you haven't done it. Now he acts like a prophet, and you follow him!
Did you hear what he said back there?
Yes I heard him. We took an oath against Rome. I don't see a thing against Rome around here, all I see are Jews against Jews.
Then you're not listening.
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During the end credits, Peter Gabriel, composer for the film, credits all the people that used instruments for the music. See more »
This adaptation of Nikos Kazantzakis's novel, directed by Martin Scorsese, caused quite a stir on its initial release, accused of blasphemy and of causing offence to the Christian religion.
However, in its depiction of Jesus Christ as a human being rather than a man divine, it gets to the core of his story. This is a man who makes the choice of self-sacrifice for the good of his fellow men, despite the temptations of an alternative life - shown in this film by a life with Mary Magdelene rather than dying at the Crucifixion.
Played by Willem Dafoe with great sensitivity, this Christ performs miracles and discusses the intricacies of life and death with his disciples. Harvey Keitel is Judas, a rough man who fails to understand the significance of being the chosen Son of God; while Barbara Hershey is an effective Magdelene. David Bowie makes a short appearance as Pontius Pilate and is surprisingly good.
'The Last Temptation of Christ' is not one of Scorsese's best films but it certainly sparks questions and leaves food for thought. Some of the imagery is superb and the script is coherent and of a high standard.
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