• Bible Films Blog

    Looking at film interpretations of the stories in the Bible - past, present and future, as well as current film releases with spiritual significance, and a few bits and pieces on the Bible.

    Friday, October 27, 2006

    First Few Reviews for Color of the Cross

    I've not yet received a screener for Color of the Cross, and, given today is its opening day, I'm not particularly sure that I will. The first couple of reviews are in though, and they don't sound all that positive. Rotten Tomatoes interprets Stephen Hunter's brief review in The Washington Post as "fresh", but it's really much 50/50:
    This feels like a cramped, TV-style retelling, with small groups of people, no special effects, in some ways almost cheesy.
    [snip]
    This Christ bleeds profusely, but the dramatic impact from the truncating of the story is to make the issue of color more paramount. The image cannot be forgotten, and it matches, in its way, with troubled recollections of lynching photos all of us have seen.
    On the other hand, Variety reviewer Todd McCarthy just plain lays into it.
    But once the revisionist frisson of a black Jesus, not to mention Mary, Joseph and Judas, has worn off, one is stuck with more mundane matters such as story dynamics, visual style and character verisimilitude, much to the misfortune of the audience. Even at a brief 81 minutes (before end credits), this is lugubrious stuff, as LaMarre wearisomely elaborates on the assorted uncertainties of that fateful night;

    [snip]

    But lacking the drama of Jesus' trial and the passion, as well as the substance of his teachings, LaMarre's turgid take has very little to offer dramatically or inspirationally. Except for an unusual late-on sequence in which his Jesus becomes virtually hysterical with fear about dying, the helmer's leading performance is marked by monotonously deliberate elocution.

    Shot around Santa Clarita in rugged terrain north of Los Angeles, the pic consists mostly of close-ups that make no use of natural backdrops, but can't disguise the minimal production values; "crowd" scenes are particularly threadbare and unconvincing. The mostly synthesized score drones on and on under most scenes.
    Ouch!

    Given this film is only getting a limited release today (before a wider release on Nov. 10th), and that it's still the middle of the night in the US then I suspect a few more reviews will get added in the next few hours. I'll post them here rather than starting a new post every time.

    Meanwhile various bloggers have reported the film's release without much in the way of film analysis. Some seem to love the concept, others hate it. Most notably, Dan Granados has added speech bubbles to the still at the top of the page

    I've posted a few more reviews of this film here

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    8 Comments:

    • At 9:22 pm, July 06, 2009, Anonymous Anonymous said…

      Juan Lamarre is black and i'm happy.

       
    • At 9:32 pm, July 06, 2009, Anonymous Jack said…

      I've heard something that the director said that Africa has pictures of Jesus as a black man there.
      AND it is the ONLY place where there are pictures of Jesus as a black man and where they worship Jesus outside of their own image just like in this movie.


      But do you know if there is a part 3 of this film coming out soon? I watched an interview of Juan Claude LaMarre and he said, ''A Third part is going to be on The Trials of Christ." And he said that he is making his black image different in all 3 films. I typed in the third part of this film but I couldn't find information. I look forward to your response

      Thanks!

       
    • At 1:59 am, July 07, 2009, Anonymous Lehi said…

      I wanted to know if the film reached Cleveland, Ohio
      (where i live), but it didn't. I WAS MAD DUDE!! Jesus looks african in this film for sure. (Just like the director of this film said). My faith has no color. It is Black and White. And it is Jesus and his Death. My friend, Kurt didn't like how this was meant. The Hebrews never raced for a film like this. Because they ARE the Race!!!
      My mother said, "Jesus was and is BLACK!!! FOREVER SON!! Hebrew is not a race!!!" I DID NOT BELIEVE HER!!

       
    • At 10:01 pm, July 17, 2009, Anonymous Bobby Flay said…

      This is SMASHIN' Christ's life, man!!! I remember my bible says ADAM AND EVE WERE BLACK!! THEY WERE, MAN!! I BELIEVE THE BIBLE IS TRUE ABOUT THOSE TWO PEOPLE IN THE COLOR OF THE SKIN OF MY GOD. YESHUA!! BURN!!! PISS THE CHARACTER: GOD IN THIS FILM!!! I AM!! I HAVE BEEN ASAIN SINCE THE YEAR I DIED OF IRON LUNG POLIO CANCER: DEPRESSION YEAR 1933!! I CAME BACK ALIVE FROM THE BLACK MAN, GOD IN ANOTHER DEPRESSION YEAR 1934!! I WAS HAPPY!!! SO, FIGHT BACK POLIO!! ITS DEAD!! CANCER KILLS !! IT KILLED MY MOM WHEN SHE AND I DIED!!!
      WE ARE BACK!! I AM THE TRUTH FOR THAT STORY!!
      THANKS GOD FOR BRINGING ME BACK AND MAKING ME BLACK LIKE YESHUA YOUR SON!! I LOVE U GOD!! DIE!!! AW, BABY I LOVE YOU!! GAL!!

       
    • At 1:27 am, July 26, 2009, Anonymous Anonymous said…

      Ignore the other comments. Answer Jack's.

       
    • At 7:30 am, July 26, 2009, Blogger Matt Page said…

      Not heard anything about that Jack, but then I kind of missed part 2 as well, so who knows!

      Matt

       
    • At 3:44 am, July 29, 2009, Anonymous Jack said…

      Just go to the Youtube website i typed up, and at the very end he talks about that.

       
    • At 3:47 am, July 29, 2009, Anonymous Jack said…

      www.youtube.com/watch/?v=ai6hJEiw4WM

       

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