This Saturday I had the opportunity to attend a showing of the “Son of God” movie and write a review for you all. It was an honor to be asked and so of course I said yes. But, honestly, I don’t know if I would have chosen to see the movie otherwise.
You know when you have a favorite book and they finally decide to make a movie out of it and you’re very excited? And then, you go and see the movie and no one looks like how you imagined they would look, and they cut out your favorite parts and characters, and somehow in the end it kind of changes the book you loved so much in the beginning?
Well, there is no book I love more than the Bible and it tells the most precious story ever told. So, no pressure there, filmmakers!
Each person’s faith is intensely personal to them and we each have a unique way of portraying Christ’s humanness in our minds. “Son of God” chose to portray him as movie star handsome with long, wavy hair and a Hollywood smile (which he flashed often). In fact, Jesus seemed to be in on a funny secret that no one else knew about throughout much of the movie. He was always delivering his lines (lines I know well and keep so close to my heart) while smiling. For me, this was very off-putting. To me, when I reach each one of Christ’s spoken words in the Bible they are powerful and I get a sense he delivered them with force and passion. I found this sadly lacking in the movie.
I tried to watch “Son of God” through an unbeliever’s eyes. What would they be feeling? Would they feel moved and want to look into who Jesus was and is? It was difficult for me to discern this as I was too close to the “real” story.
I will say that the supporting players were well cast. But, we just don’t get to know them very well. The scenery was stunning and the locations seemed to be authentic (although, I could have lived without the spinning camera angles). I thought the movie did an excellent job of showing what living under Roman rule was probably like, and I actually felt for the Jewish leaders who were trying to figure out this uneducated, simple man who showed such power. But, I missed John the Baptist and I resented the inclusion of things not a part of the real story. And, I missed the passion!
Still, when the movie ended and the credits rolled, a beautiful rendition of: “Mary, Did You Know?” (sung by Cee Lo Green) played. The audience was completely silent as the song washed over us. The screen went blank and yet we all stayed in our seats. There was a stillness in the room. A voice from behind me said, “Well, I’ll say it if no one else will, “Praise the Lord!” And, the rest of us chorused, “Amen!”
I do thank the filmmakers for making this film. I believe it to be an honorable endeavor and I pray it touches people, especially unbelievers, and causes them to take a look at this man named Jesus, this “Son of God”. If that happens for just one person, then this movie was well worth the time and money spent making it.
Have you seen the movie? What did you think? I’d love to hear your comments below!
Check out the trailer!