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The Passion of the Christ (2004)

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Depicts the final twelve hours in the life of Jesus of Nazareth, on the day of his crucifixion in Jerusalem.



(screenplay), (screenplay)
1,064 ( 23)
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 25 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mattia Sbragia ...
Toni Bertorelli ...
Hristo Shopov ...
Pontius Pilate (as Hristo Naumov Shopov)
Giacinto Ferro ...
Aleksander Mincer ...
Nicodemus (as Olek Mincer)
Sheila Mokhtari ...
Woman in Audience
Lucio Allocca ...
Old Temple Guard


A depiction of the last twelve hours in the life of Jesus of Nazareth, on the day of his crucifixion in Jerusalem. The story opens in the Garden of Olives where Jesus has gone to pray after the Last Supper. Betrayed by Judas Iscariot, the controversial Jesus--who has performed 'miracles' and has publicly announced that he is 'the Son of God'--is arrested and taken back within the city walls of Jerusalem. There, the leaders of the Pharisees confront him with accusations of blasphemy; subsequently, his trial results with the leaders condemning him to his death. Jesus is brought before Pontius Pilate, the Roman Governor of Palestine, for his sentencing. Pilate listens to the accusations leveled at Jesus by the Pharisees. Realizing that his own decision will cause him to become embroiled in a political conflict, Pilate defers to King Herod in deciding the matter of how to persecute Jesus. However, Herod returns Jesus to Pilate who, in turn, gives the crowd a choice between which prisoner ... Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


By his wounds, we were healed. See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sequences of graphic violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



| |

Release Date:

25 February 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Passion  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$2,305,089 (Australia) (27 February 2004)


$370,782,930 (USA) (25 March 2005)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (cut)

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Although many Jews consider this film as Anti-Semitic, still there are several Jewish Rabbis who don't agree with this claim. This is because Judaism began only with the completion of Babylonian Talmud in sixth century AD, Judaism is not the religion of the bible, and Jews are different from Hebrews. See more »


When Pontius Pilate talks to Jesus alone he moves to the right of Jesus. In the next shot he appears on his left-hand side. See more »


[first lines]
Jesus: Peter. You could not watch even one hour with me?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The movie doesn't begin with credits, but only with a verse from the Bible: "He was wounded for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; by His wounds we are healed." Isaiah 53; 700 B.C. See more »


Written by Göksel Baktagir (as Goksel Baktagir) and Yurdal Tokcan
Performed by Göksel Baktagir (as Goksel Baktagir) and Yurdal Tokcan
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A movie like no others...
28 February 2004 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

The second the movie was over, I was dumbstruck, and I wasn't the only one. When the movie ended I thought there would be a big round of applause but when I turned around I saw that about half the audience was still in their seats. I looked at a couple of people, some were speachless and most were crying. Nonetheless I didn't hear a word. When I thought about it, i realized an applause would have been ridiculous.

When someone asked me how the movie was I was going to say it was amazing, but that wouldn't have done the movie justice. The movie was an extremely moving, emotional experience.

The cast was absolutely flawless, Jim Caviezel gave a powerful performance as Jesus, Maia Morgenstern as Mary brought me to tears, and even though Monica Bellucci spoke only a few lines, her performance and beauty astonished me. The score was incredible. It had a middle-eastern feel to it, and was timeless and beautiful.

Most aspects of the movie were perfect to me. Instead of a squeaky clean version of the life of Jesus it was a realistic and heartbreaking portrayal of his final hours. The Aramaic, Latin and Hebrew languages, and wonderful cinematography made you really feel like you were in first century Jerusalem. The flashbacks truly had an emotional impact on me.

While watching this movie I forgot about everything else in the world. Mel Gibson did an incredible job as a director and he truly was brave for taking on this project despite all the controversy.

As for the two main concerns of most people, the ultra-violence, and the alleged anti-semetism these are my views on the two.

Everything people are saying about the violence is true. It is brutal, gory, and quite possibly the most violent work in cinematic history. This R-Rating is very well justified and an NC-17 would have made sense. If you are the type of person that cannot bear violence, this is definately not the movie for you. Some scenes of torture last about 10 minutes when you feel you've seen enough after 30 seconds. But, the violence I feel was absolutely necessary. The movie is about the suffering/passion of Jesus, and turning the camera away would not have an impact on you. The movie shows what Jesus actually went through for all of mankind's sins (according to Christianity). Mel Gibson did not exagerate the violence or make it look like horror movie or Kill Bill violence. As Jay Leno said on his show the other night, when Jesus was hit it felt like WE were being hit as opposed to other violent movies were you feel like YOU are the one hitting the person. I don't think anyone can say that every single hit upon Jesus didn't affect him/her somehow.

As for the anti-semetism in the movie, I didn't find it was as bad as everyone is making it out to be. The thing that made me see why people were criticizing Mel Gibson for was that instead of spreading the blame somewhat on the Jewish high priests (Sanhedrin) and mostly on Pilate, 99% of the blame was put on the Sanhedrin, which seemed false to me considering that historically it is known that Pilate was a vicious monster, and in the movie he seems like a gentle person and reluctant to crucify Jesus. I simply didn't buy the fact that Pilate would be so nice. The movie can be considered anti-first-century-Romans, and anti-Sanhedrin, but I did not feel the movie was attacking the Jewish religion, or the entire Jewish people. But the movie is not anti-semitic for these reasons: 1. It is made evident that it was Jesus' prophecy and destiny is to die. He could probably have escaped from Gethsemane or even the cross (if he truly had ''powers''). He was born to die, and there is no blame to be placed on anyone. If anything, the Romans of that time are portrayed horribly (though realistically), and they are the ones that made him suffer tremendously before his death. 2. Basically all the ''Good Guys'' in the movie are Jewish. Jesus himself was a Jew, Mary was, The man that helped Jesus carry the cross was Jewish, Veronica the woman that brought Jesus water and wiped his face was, and many Jews were screaming in the crowd against the torture and crucifixion of Jesus. (Personally, I don't know why Pilate was portrayed so nicely. It's not like the Jews had the ultimate power. It was ultimately HIS decision to have Jesus crucified.)

An aspect of the film that intrigued me was the character of Satan, and the demons in the movie. When I first found out Satan was in the movie, I was scared it would be a red man with horns and a pitchfork, but he/she is portrayed subtly. Everything about him/her was very Eerie.

Mel Gibson deserves a lot of respect for making this film. He made the movie the way HE thought it was and though most historians or even religious figures would not agree completely to what happened, it is a general idea as to what those final hours were. When reading the new testament or hearing the story of Jesus, it's hard to understand what it was actually like for Jesus to go through all that pain, and what it was like for Mary to watch her son get tortured and crucified. The movie really put things in perspective for me.

Some people are criticizing him for adding things never written in the gospels such as demons harassing Judas Iscariot, most scenes with Satan, and the torture from Gethsemene to the Jewish court, but he had to fill the blanks in the Gospels with what he thought might have happened.

In conclusion, not everyone will like this movie. Some will love it, and some will hate it. But, I think that if you can endure the extreme violence and torture you should at least see it before you judge it. My opinion: 10/10

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