Jesus gets the tar kicked out of him, Roman style, in Mel Gibson’s shocking, agonizing, powerful depiction of the crucifixion and some possible preliminary punishments that made the trek to Golgotha a rather painful one. Gibson, a devout Catholic, has based his story on the Gospels, historical records and what God told him during a shower after filming a particularly grisly scene on Braveheart
. Yeah, Gibson is a little scary, but he’s a great filmmaker, and his telling of Jesus’ last day is as striking a film as I have seen. Jim Caviezel is tremendous as Jesus, managing to deliver effective emotional work through oceans of blood makeup. The movie is stunningly filmed, especially in its ominous depiction of Satan. As for the violence, it’s quite nasty, and parents should be cautioned that maybe it’s time for a babysitter if you’re planning a movie trek. The sounds of Jim Caviezel screaming in mock pain are enough agony for one two hour stretch. We don’t need to hear the sounds of your kids crying in terror, as well.