SEE THIS LINK FOR FULL DETAILS!
Daniel in the lions' den
Could someone pass this on to Walter Rappaport [and Joe Krycer] - he / them who is / are the organizer/s of Christians, Jews and Lions!!
Hi Geoff As you know, I receive your emails and am a great admirer of yours. I also watched last night and was absolutely horrified at his reference to the German people How dare he!!! I wonder how he will respond.. Regards M Sent from my iPad On 10/04/2012, at 10:00 AM, "g87" <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Australian Broadcasting Corporation
TV PROGRAM TRANSCRIPT
Critics offer their own message on Gibson's 'Passion'
Reporter: Tracy Bowden
KERRY O'BRIEN: The dramatic events which provide the touchstone of Christianity -- the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ -- have inspired a procession of Hollywood epics.
And they haven't been without controversy.
But nothing has rivalled the response to the new film, directed and bankrolled by devout Catholic, Mel Gibson - The Passion of the Christ.
Even before the movie was screened, debate focused on claims that it was anti-Semitic.
Now, as the film opens across Australia, the focus is shifted to the unflinching depiction of Christ's suffering, described by Time magazine as "the goriest story ever told".
Tracey Bowden reports on the movie and the reaction from Christian and Jewish leaders.
TRACY BOWDEN: Ash Wednesday, and Christians around the world gather to mark the first day of Lent, the 40 days leading up to the death and resurrection of Christ.
This holy day was deliberately chosen for another event -- the release of Hollywood's latest version of the very same story.
Moviegoers lined up to see actor- turned-producer and director Mel Gibson's controversial new film, The Passion of the Christ.
The film depicts the last 12 hours of Christ's life in brutal detail.
Its release has been preceded by not just heated debate, but enormous publicity.
STEPHEN CRITTENDEN, ABC RELIGIOUS COMMENTATOR: This has been the greatest pre-publicity campaign since Gone with the Wind.
It has been extraordinary.
And what they've done is they've drawn in church leaders who've been writing film reviews, they've had screenings for Protestant church communities.
They've shut the media out until the very last minute.
TRACY BOWDEN: A devout Catholic, Mel Gibson says the film is his version of what happened, according to the gospels of the New Testament.
But is the film true to the gospels?
CARDINAL GEORGE PELL, CATHOLIC ARCHBISHOP OF SYDNEY: There are additions, dramatisations, but I believe that it's basically, as a work of art, it's very faithful to the gospel.
RABBI RAYMOND APPLE, GREAT SYNAGOGUE, SYDNEY: I would tend, unfortunately, to disagree because when I look at the story as the film presents it, I have so many questions.
TRACY BOWDEN: Leaders from Australia's Jewish and Christian communities, Rabbi Ray Apple and Cardinal George Pell, have both seen the film.
CARDINAL GEORGE PELL: I thought it's a beautiful piece of work. Deeply moving for me as a believer, very confronting, very violent.TRACY BOWDEN: Rabbi, would you use the word 'beautiful'?
RABBI RAYMOND APPLE: No.
In fact, I was so sorry that I went, that, with all the violence I really would have walked out before the end if I had had the guts to do it.
I felt that the violence in some ways obscured the message.
TRACY BOWDEN: Certainly, some of the first members of the public to see the 'The Passion of the Christ' have been deeply affected.
WOMAN: I don't know anyone who could sit through that and not feel some emotion, whether they cried or squirmed in their seat, or had to turn away, because it was very graphic.
WOMAN 2: When you are watching it, it's sickening, it's very emotionally difficult.
MAN: I'd almost walked out about halfway through it, and it was just really challenging.
STEPHEN CRITTENDEN: I think this is Mad Max for Christians.
This is Mel Gibson catering to the kind of -- his sense of the ruling aesthetic at the moment, which is violent.
And I think by overemphasising the violence, by overemphasising the violence to the degree that he has, he's lost the spirituality in the story, he's lot the great sort of human dramatic moments.
TRACY BOWDEN: Could it have been done with less violence, Cardinal Pell?
CARDINAL GEORGE PELL: I think the point of the film, the point of the Passion narratives, is precisely Jesus's reactions to the violence, how he takes it, what message he gives out despite the suffering that he has received.That's the point of the Passion.
RABBI RAYMOND APPLE: I would have much preferred that there would have been a consistent positive message without the need for all the beatings and the scourgings and so on and so forth.
TRACY BOWDEN: A key criticism is that the film depicts Jews, all Jews, as the villains, responsible for the death of Christ, and that this will fuel anti-Semitism.
RABBI RAYMOND APPLE: One gets the impression that there was a vast mob, presumably all to be regarded as Jewish, who were baying for his blood and insisting on him being crucified when his followers, as well as his detractors, were Jewish.
CARDINAL GEORGE PELL: Whenever we see a film or read a book, when there is a villain and the villain has a crowd of supporters, we don't move on automatically and stereotype the whole race because of the errors of judgment of that leader and the crowd.
So there's nothing in the film to justify anti-Semitism.
TRACY BOWDEN: The Passion of the Christ has certainly focused attention on the story of the crucifixion, and is perhaps the best publicity Christianity has had in a long time.
But to what end?
STEPHEN CRITTENDEN: This is a question I'd want to ask -- whether the churches and the church leaders have, perhaps, put their critical faculties to one side, because they're so keen on what this might bring, and they're less sort of critical about where this story and the way it's being told might be taking us.
And my feeling is that it may well be in a backward direction.
TRACY BOWDEN: Is the Church, in some way, grateful that Mel Gibson has put the Bible back in the headlines, if you like?
CARDINAL GEORGE PELL: I am personally.
But I'd imagine there might be a few in the Church who don't like the film or are affronted by the film.
But I'm delighted that this film is producing such a discussion of Christ, what is his true message, and what is the significance of his life and death.
RABBI RAYMOND APPLE: I cannot really advocate that people should go and see it.
Nonetheless, it does make its contribution towards religious discussion and, in some cases, it may well open people's eyes to teachings which have a very significant place in the whole marketplace of human ideas.
TRACY BOWDEN: After all the controversy, the success or otherwise of Mel Gibson's Passion is now in the lap of the gods.
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