• Bible Films Blog

    Looking at film interpretations of the stories in the Bible - past, present and future, as well as preparation for a future work on Straub/Huillet's Moses und Aron and a few bits and pieces on biblical studies.

    Matt Page


    Saturday, December 22, 2007

    Christmas UK TV Preview 2007

    It's time for my usual Christmas/Easter round up of TV programmes / films over the holiday season that might be of interest (see 2006's). As ever, I'm only covering the 5 main UK channels, so apologies to any readers from the rest of the world. That said, I believe the History Channel, is showing The Passion – Religion and the Movies).Liverpool Nativity - 23rd Dec. 10:45pm - BBC1
    Following on from Last Year's Manchester Passion, the Liverpool Nativity relocates the story of Mary and Joseph to modern day Liverpool and accompanies it with various songs written by the city's famous pop acts. I've already made several posts on this, and will post a review shortly.Dr. Who - 25th Dec. 6:50pm - BBC1.
    As I mentioned back in July, Dr. Who has taken a rather Christological turn in recent outings and this Christmas special episode looks like it is going to go one step further. As you can see from the above photo the Doctor, will not only be joined by Kylie Minogue, but also two angelic looking robots. There was a story on this in yesterday's The Times which described the scene as the Doctor "ascending through the ship’s decks, carried by a pair of robotic angels". Sadly, it was also quite depressing to see "Christian Voice" yet again used as a spokesgroup for Christians.

    Hidden Story of Jesus - 25th Dec. 8:30pm – Ch. 4
    Documentary with Robert Beckford which attempts to unravel the mystery of why there are so many versions of the Christ story across the world and asks which is the real one, and where this leaves the Christian story and his own belief in Jesus. Channel 4 has a microsite for this one, which is made particularly relevant now that films such as The Aquarian Gospel are currently in production.The Secret Life of Brian - 31st Dec 8:00 pm - Channel 4
    Channel 4 are repeating the evening they devoted to Life of Brian last year, which is great news for those of us who, somewhat inexplicably, missed it last year. The evening kicks off with this documentary looking at the controversy surrounding the film. I hope they show the complete footage of the TV debate between two of the Python's and a bishop and another religious representative. I don't think it will, but hopefully there will be some interesting footage that I've not seen before.

    Monty Python's Life of Brian - 31st Dec. 9:00 pm - Channel 4
    (All posts on this film)
    A film that needs no introduction, but it is part of an evening on the Pythons. The evening continues after this film with the documentary What the Pythons Did Next.

    What the Pythons Did Next - 31st Dec. 10:45 pm - Channel 4
    Documentary, looking at what the Pythons did after Life of Brian. I seem to recall that this was considered to be the lesser of the two documentaries as, of course, everyone knows what the Pythons did next, but I imagine it will still be worth it to see some good clips.

    Samson and Delilah - 1st Jan. 12:45pm - Channel 5
    A tradition seems to be starting of showing an Old Testament Epic film at some point over Christmas. Last year it was Solomon and Sheba, this year it's the turn of DeMile's Samson and DelilahBruce Almighty - 2nd Jan. 8:30pm - BBC1
    A surprisingly deep film considering it stars Jim Carrey, managing to look at a host of issues from unanswered prayer to theodicy. Morgan Freeman's performance as God steals the show and there is at least one brief audio-visual reference to DeMille's The Ten Commandments.

    Whilst there are a few good programmes to watch out for, it's a bit of a shame that quite a bit of this post was just a cut and paste job from last year! In other words there are various programmes (both that I've mentioned and that I haven't that were re-hashes of things from last year). That said there is a good deal of Bible related content again this year, with much of if (Liverpool Nativity, Hidden Story of Jesus, Dr. Who) fresh and creative, as well as a couple of classic Bible Films thrown in for good measure.

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