The story of Jesus Christ from birth to resurrection comes to vivid life in this sweeping Biblical epic featuring a moving score from Academy Award-winning composer Hans Zimmer.

This is not a film … this is an opportunity.

Jesus is coming back
It’s been 10 years to the day since the story of Jesus was last told on the big screen. Mel Gibson’s
Passion of the Christ was the most recent cinematic effort to tell the Life of Christ, and it has been close to 50 years since The Greatest Story Ever Told hit theaters back before many of you were even born. It’s about time.

This is a celebration of faith and an opportunity to share it. This is a Jesus movie you will be proud to invite your friends to when it opens in 2 weeks.

The movie opens with a fantastic recap of the timeline of humanity demonstrating Jesus’ presence in our world from beginning to end. If you were a fan of The Bible TV miniseries you’ll recognize this early montage as some of the very best moments of the series. The narrator quickly sets the tone and that the focus of the film, the Life of Christ, is about to begin. It truly is the greatest story ever told – since may of the scenes were familiar it took me a while to get into the pace of the movie, but it is a great film. It is a powerful telling of that timeless story. Really, really good.

Familiar, but inspirational
At first, the movie feels familiar, and almost a tinge of doubt crept in as to how much was going to simply be a retread from the miniseries. Yes, some new scenes have been added, and existing scenes have been edited to near perfection. As before, executive producer Mark Burnett is wise to “stick to the script” and simply tell the biblical narrative. The story rings true to the Bible – a good, faithful retelling of the classic stories of Jesus. If you walk into this film expecting to see a whole new take from the Bible series, you’re going to be disappointed. If you want to see an expanded story from the series, you’ll be pleased.

To be fair, a list of what was added and what was taken away isn’t the point. It wasn’t until I put aside the whole “what I’ve seen before” and analyzing everything on the screen for it all really to hit me. This is Jesus. This is salvation. This is the greatest story ever told. Incredible! And this is a wonderful film that clearly and unashamedly tells that inspiring and hope-filled story of Christ.

Is it appropriate for students?
The film largely takes a lighter tone in cinematography, unlike Russell Crowe’s upcoming Noah film which appears to be based more loosely on the Bible and seems to have a much darker tone throughout. That having been said, much like Passion of the Christ, the PG-13 rating is definitely earned here in the run to the finish line where the crucifixion demands it. All in all a great film for older students on up. Go see it!

One sentence summary
Christians would do well to celebrate this movie and bring their friends to help them begin investigate the claims and teachings of Jesus. 4 out of 5 stars, rated PG-13, opens February 28th

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