Jesus Christ is one controversial movie character.
One year ago, director Mel Gibson's The Passion of The Christ was released amid a firestorm of controversy not seen since … well, since Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ in 1988.
While The Passion raked in over $600 million in worldwide box-office receipts, making it 25th on the list of highest-grossing films of all time, its impact extended far beyond the bottom line. And now that impact has been captured on the aptly titled documentary, Impact: The Passion of The Christ, now available on video after a very limited release in Sacramento-area theaters.
In the film, director Tim Chey takes viewers around the world to explore the passion behind The Passion. Chey starts his documentary in Dallas, where local businessman Arch Bonnema was so moved by his preview of The Passion that he purchased 6,000 tickets - $42,000 worth - to give away on the film's opening day. Chey documents the long lines, TV crews, and anticipation surrounding the movie's midnight premiere, reminding viewers that The Passion was a true cultural phenomenon, especially among the evangelical Christian subculture.
But The Passion also stirred phenomenal controversy, and Impact addresses the hype through interviews with an impressive cross-section of influential religious and popular spokespeople. These include representatives of the Catholic League, Jews for Jesus, the National Association of Evangelicals, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, the Southern Baptist Convention-and David Robinson, former professional basketball player for the San Antonio Spurs and a self-professing Christian.
Chey also takes his cameras to London, Tokyo, Oslo, Bombay, Seoul, and Bangkok, documenting the interest (or ...1