6.8/10
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205 user 122 critic

The Nativity Story (2006)

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A drama that focuses on the period in Mary and Joseph's life where they journeyed to Bethlehem for the birth of Jesus.

Writer:

Mike Rich
3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Keisha Castle-Hughes ... Mary
Oscar Isaac ... Joseph
Hiam Abbass ... Anna
Shaun Toub ... Joaquim
Ciarán Hinds ... Herod
Shohreh Aghdashloo ... Elizabeth
Stanley Townsend ... Zechariah
Alexander Siddig ... The Angel Gabriel
Nadim Sawalha ... Melchior
Eriq Ebouaney ... Balthasar
Stefan Kalipha Stefan Kalipha ... Gaspar
Alessandro Giuggioli ... Antipas
Farida Ouchani Farida Ouchani ... Ruth
Saïd Amadis Saïd Amadis ... Tero
Maria Giovanna Donzelli Maria Giovanna Donzelli ... Mary's Friend
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Storyline

In Nazareth, teenager Mary is betrothed to the local carpenter, Joseph. Mary is visited by an angel and told that she will fulfill a prophecy and as a virgin give birth to God's son, the savior of the world. Mary's pregnancy brings her the scorn of the community and Joseph struggles to believe her seemingly outlandish story. Meanwhile, a census forces every man and his family to return to his place of birth. Joseph and Mary set out on a long and arduous journey to Bethlehem. This story is based on the Biblical account of the birth of Jesus Christ. Written by L. Hamre

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One Couple. One Journey. One Child...who would change the world...forever See more »

Genres:

Drama | Family | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some violent content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

None

Release Date:

1 December 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Nativity See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,849,304, 3 December 2006, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$37,629,831, 18 January 2007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$46,432,264, 17 August 2008
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Because it isn't specifically stated in the Bible itself, various sources have given different theories regarding which wise man gave Jesus which gift. In this case, Melchior is shown giving the gold, Balthasar the frankincense, and Gaspar the myrrh. See more »

Goofs

When Herod is making a sacrifice to atone for his misdeeds in the temple, he offers a bull. According to Leviticus, the proper sacrifice for a ruler who sins is a goat. See more »

Quotes

Mary: You've never really told me of your dream.
Joseph: My dream?
[pause, he is teasing her and also contemplating his response]
Joseph: No.
Mary: Please, tell me.
Joseph: An angel came to me. He told me the child within you had been conceived by the Holy Spirit and that I should not be afraid.
Mary: Are you afraid?
Joseph: Yes.
[laughing]
Joseph: Are you?
[...]
See more »


Soundtracks

In Rosa Vernat Lilium
(The Rose and the Lily)
Music by Mychael Danna
Lyrics by Elizabeth Danna
Performed by Azam Ali
Azam Ali appears courtesy of Six Degrees Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Perhaps the most authentic and accurate version you'll ever see
17 December 2006 | by jhammell-2See all my reviews

If you believe that Mary, Joseph, the baby Jesus and everyone else in the actual events were white, Anglo-Saxon Europeans living in Central Park in New York or in California, you will be disappointed with this movie. If you want to see how people really appeared, lived and responded to the actual culture in Israel at the time of the birth of Christ, this is a work of art.

"The Nativity" is an excellent depiction of the actual events as we know them from the Bible. While it has very minor "flaws", these are buried under the number of things that make this film accurate and authentic.

Mary does not wear her piety on her sleeve and get hysterical and dramatic at every turn in the story. Instead she is accurately portrayed and played as a simple peasant girl in a very traditional culture with strict rules of behavior. She responds hesitantly but with faith to the events that focus on her.

Joseph is equally realistic as a young peasant just beginning life, and any man who has ever faced marriage for the first time will appreciate the dilemmas facing Joseph and his reactions to them.

Herod is an historically-accurate and ruthless jerk, but the movie does not overdo his part. The balance is just right; he's on camera enough to convey his wickedness and his part in the plot, but not enough to distract from the message.

The wise men are great! Instead of being simple plastic figures in a nativity scene on your mantle, they really come to life, add a lot of context to the movie, and provide a lot of information about how and why things happened as they did. The timing of the wise men's arrival may be off - but no one is 100% certain when they did arrive so this is not a big deal.

When the shepherds are visited by an angel to announce the birth of Christ, the angel is not followed visibly by "a heavenly host praising God" - but you can hear them.

I could go on and on and on, but the point is that this is an excellent depiction of events that occurred in Israel 2,000 years ago. If you want to learn about and marvel at what life was really like at that time, see the movie. It will bolster your faith. If you want to see Adam Sandler playing a Jewish Santa Claus to celebrate Christimas, this is probably not the movie for you.


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