Fifteen years ago this August Martin Scorsese's controvestrial cinematic masterpiece Last Temptation of Christ showed Jesus (played by the superb Willem Dafoe) die on the cross. Suddenly he cries out, "Father, why have you forsaken me?" Scorsese's choice of turning the camera sideways before Christ's second words are uttered conveyed the unbearable suffering of the crucifixion. In this scene, the viewer fully understands why Jesus was tempted to reject the will of God. Scorsese's research for Last Temptation included the study of numerous paintings, such as 'The Ghent Christ Carrying the Cross' by Hieronymus Bosch, which he pays tribute to in the film. In one spectacular slow-motion shot, we see a cross-carrying Jesus being led to his death, surrounded by a mocking crowd. In this scene, Scorsese employed Peter Gabriel's epic track "Passion" from the soundtrack (see post following), where we hear a Qawwali Voiced singer, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, lament Christ's plight.
In The Last Temptation of Christ final moments, Jesus smiles, repeats his affirmation softly, and closes his eyes in death. Scorsese burns his own film into a white light, illustrating that his cinematic accomplishment pales in comparison to the resurrection of Christ.
Now, fifteen years later, in stark contrast to the art and homage of Scorcese's Last Temptation, Time magazine reports that Titanic director James Cameron, has a documentary blockbuster waiting in the wings, which claims that Jesus wasn't resurrected as Christianity purports, and that Jesus' burial cave was discovered by Cameron near Jerusalem. Cameron also make claim, similar to that in Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code, that carpenter Jesus fathered a son with Mary Magdelene.
Posted by Casey Kazan.