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


Mel Gibson


Benedict Fitzgerald (screenplay), Mel Gibson (screenplay)
416 ( 21)
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 29 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Jim Caviezel ... Jesus
Maia Morgenstern ... Mary
Christo Jivkov ... John (as Hristo Jivkov)
Francesco De Vito ... Peter
Monica Bellucci ... Magdalen
Mattia Sbragia ... Caiphas
Toni Bertorelli Toni Bertorelli ... Annas
Luca Lionello ... Judas
Hristo Shopov ... Pontius Pilate (as Hristo Naumov Shopov)
Claudia Gerini ... Claudia Procles
Fabio Sartor ... Abenader
Giacinto Ferro Giacinto Ferro ... Joseph of Arimathea
Aleksander Mincer ... Nicodemus (as Olek Mincer)
Sheila Mokhtari Sheila Mokhtari ... Woman in Audience
Lucio Allocca 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 prefect of the Roman province of Judaea, 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 ... Written by Anthony Pereyra {}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


One man changed the world forever. See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Contrary to popular rumor, Malaysia did not ban the film. The Malaysian government allowed Christians to see it, and only Christian churches could sell tickets. See more »


As Jesus carries his cross, the blood on the cross disappears and reappears between shots. See more »


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

Alternate Versions

In January 2005, Mel Gibson announced that a slightly (5-6 minutes) shorter version would be released to theaters in March 2005 (just in time for Easter), under the title "The Passion Recut". The new version features no new scenes, but trimming of the most graphic scenes, particularly the scourging. See more »


Written by Göksel Baktagir (as Goksel Baktagir) and Yurdal Tokcan
Performed by Göksel Baktagir (as Goksel Baktagir) and Yurdal Tokcan
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User Reviews

A quick review
26 February 2004 | by josh8199See all my reviews

For the first time in my life, when it comes to discussing a film, I've been rendered nearly speechless. Mel Gibson's `The Passion of the Christ,' which depicts the last 12 hours in the life of Jesus, defies the typical `it's good' or `it's bad' mentality of a review. It's so visually gripping, so heart-wrenching and so emotionally draining that writing about it simply can't do it justice.

Gibson, who directed and co-wrote the screenplay, went to great lengths to make sure his film was Biblically accurate and it shows. Jesus (played brilliantly by James Caviezel, `Frequency') looks Jewish, instead of the blond-haired, blue-eyed man usually seen in the role. Every line spoken is in Aramaic or Latin (with English subtitles). Every prop used, from whips and swords to clothing and wigs, looks stunningly authentic. What emerges is the most realistic depiction of Christ's suffering ever put on screen.

Most films about Jesus begin at His birth, give a kind of Cliff's Notes glance-over of His life, and make crucifixion seem slightly unpleasant - not `Passion.' The film is entirely about the journey to that specific event and shows it's possibly the most horrific method used to kill someone. `Passion' begins as Jesus agonizes in the Garden of Gethsemane, so troubled by His upcoming duty that His sweat turns to blood.

As He prays, He fights a spiritual battle. He knows He must die and, despite leading a sinless life, take on the sins of mankind so they can be saved. He has been abandoned by His followers. He is constantly tempted by Satan, who tells Jesus that one man can't possibly die for everyone's sins. After setting aside His own will and seeking His Father's, Jesus is betrayed by Judas Iscariot (one of His disciples) and handed over to Jewish authorities and eventually the Roman government.

What follows is an unflinching look at the way Christ was killed. His beatings, scourging and eventual crucifixion at the hands of Roman soldiers is shown in graphic detail. Where other films would cut away, `Passion' zooms in - every punch, every piece of flesh ripped away, every drop of blood, every thorn in His crown and every nail driven into His body is vividly captured on camera.

The film is slightly over two hours long, starts with Christ's arrest in the Garden and ends with His resurrection (covered in about 12 seconds). Everything between is His brutal suffering and it is relentless. There are several brief flashbacks to earlier times in Christ's life to provide a short relief from the violence, but none long enough for the audience to forget what they are watching.

The controversy that has surrounded `Passion' in recent months (consisting mostly of claims that it's anti-Semitic) is unfortunate. Yes, some Jews are responsible for the death of Jesus. But so are some Romans and, most importantly, so are the rest of us. Everyone, whether literally or symbolically, placed Jesus Christ on that cross to die. The film in no way implies that the Jewish nation as a whole is to blame for killing Him.

As a Christian, this film is a wake-up call. I've always known that Jesus suffered and died for me. I even know the physical things that happen during a scourging and crucifixion. Seeing the process right in front of you, however, is a completely different matter. I have never cried as hard as I did during `The Passion of the Christ.' As I watched Jesus being beaten, spit upon, whipped to near-death and ultimately nailed to a piece of wood, all I could keep thinking, over and over again, was `He did that for me. He did that for all of us.'

C.S. Lewis once said that Jesus could only be one of three things: Lord (as He said He was), a liar or a lunatic. Before viewing `The Passion of the Christ,' and strongly reinforced afterward, there is only one option for me. Whether Christian or non-Christian, I strongly urge you to see this film.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Aramaic | Latin | Hebrew

Release Date:

25 February 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Passion of Christ See more »

Filming Locations:

Basilicata, Italy See more »


Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$83,848,082, 29 February 2004

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

Production Co:

Icon Productions See more »
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Technical Specs


| (cut)

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS



Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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