Gibson's reason for the violence was to emphasize the glory of Jesus remaining commited to His mission of love no matter what happened to Him.
I haven't seen it yet, so I don't know if I would feel he got the level of violence right, but he did have a specific theological and cinematic reason to do it that way.
I know that, and I have spoken to some people who saw it that way and were deeply moved, and others who were appalled, as I was. I think he walked an extremely fine line, and it's possible to go either way. For me, and despite being at several points in my life both very Christian and very Catholic, it didn't work at all. For my brother and my mother-in-law, it was effective.
In other words, Your Mileage May Vary.
I just don't want to see it. I never did and I certainly do NOT want to see it now. If I want gore, I'll go watch Ghost Ship again.
Sorry it was such a disappointment, hon. Too bad they don't give refunds!
I'm not disappointed that I saw it, if for no other reason than that I can participate in the debate. The violence was grotesque, but so far beyond the realm of believability that it was "eww" rather than "Oh god, no!" for me. Like I said elsewhere, it's a fine line and others end up on the opposite side of it from me.
Had you read this essay
on Gibson's movie being knowingly a BDSM/snuff flick?
You know...I had wondered if anyone would read that into it--and I am not surprised. Now I am curious.
Lys - English MA. Kinkster. Wierd like dat.
No, I had not read it, but it is fascinating, as are the followup comments from the rather outraged BDSM community - just as divided as Passion audiences. Thanks for the link.
Oh, and Gibson would fully have intended any homophobia, as documented here
And yet like so many homophobes, he makes a movie with homoerotic overtones....
Mel may be compensating [g]
A conservative view disliking the movie, here
A little generalized, but I can see where you're coming from. Signs was actually quite good.
I'm not going to see it; not so much because I have issues with the religious stuff (though I do have issues, and I'm conflicted about that side of it).
I'm not going to see it because of the violence. Even if it is realistic for a man to take that much punishment and keep moving; even if it would give me insight into what happened -- I don't want to see it.
I felt the same way about Saving Private Ryan, which I saw reluctantly with my husband. It gave me a much better idea of what it would've been like to be in a war. But I already knew it would be horrible. I was already anti-war. I didn't need the extra little details, like what a man actually looks like when he's shot, how people face the death of a friend, and so forth.
If Jesus was a real person and was really crucified in this way, well, I already know it must've been horrible. What I can imagine in my mind is scary enough without seeing the nails pierce his flesh, without seeing the faces of those who do the hurting.
Thank you for writing about this. I'm very interested in people's reactions to it.
2004-02-29 02:35 pm (UTC)
Re: You make good points
I understand the conflicted part. I actually went in there wondering whether it would inspire me to reconsider my paganism.
Not a chance. It is not persuasive, because there is no message of redemption, only a twisted fascination with the suffering. I'm still creeped out.
Man, I would be creeped out, too. I am fascinated by the *emotions* involved, because it is such a powerful, powerful story. Betrayal, suffering, redemption.
I don't wanna see the violence.
I'm not sure what I am, really. I fit most closely into the 'Christian' box but with some differences. I definitely believe in a higher power but I occasionally feel other presences, too. And I'm not sure about quantifying God or how much of the Bible I really believe.
My Dad's gonna be the next president of the Uniting Church in Australia. Heh. I'm so darn proud. I feel welcome in Uniting Church stuff but I don't really go to church. Haven't been for a long time.
2004-03-03 11:27 am (UTC)
Re: You make good points
People are flocking to see it. More appallingly, some are taking their children - not a responsible act of parenthood, IMHO.
I've never heard of the Uniting Church. Is it exclusive to Australia?
More appallingly, some are taking their children
::winces:: Wow. That is indeed appalling, and not a good parenting act imo either.
::beams:: Yes, it is. Started in 1977 -- a union of the Congregationalist, Methodist, and Presbyterian churches in Australia.
2004-03-04 02:59 am (UTC)
Re: You make good points
Sounds very cool, that church. I applaud them!
2004-02-29 05:41 pm (UTC)
Riveting Washington Post article on why Gibson's movie belongs to an old Catholic anti-Protestant genre, here.
2004-02-29 08:09 pm (UTC)
I actually thought about that while watching the movie - my brother being converted to Protestant and having no use for church art was extolling the movie, and I thought it was kinda strange.
I agree in that the copious violence didn't have to be completely exhibited in order to make an impact. The seemingly-relentless beatings definitely didn't "scare me" into empathizing as I'm sure Gibson was probably trying to do. That having been said, I thought the movie was quite good in a holistic sense.
As far as Satan was concerned, I think they could have been trying to accomplish one of two things:
1.) Portrey Satan as androgenous to prevent any possible controversy concerning Satan's gender.
2.) Portrey Satan as an male with feminine features, as Satan was once an angel. The choice of casting a woman could have just been to emphasize the sort of "vestigial angelic features."
Point taken about the Satan portrayal. It was just so...David Bowie. [g]
On the contrary to some other people's posts, I am actually more curious to see it now. I'm off tommorrow, and I think I will go see it alone then. It seems to have sparked so much debate, and while I already have some of my own ideas- I must go see it on order to give an informed opinion.
Oh, believe me, as controversial as it is I wouldn't miss it - I want to be able to have an educated point of view in any debate.