Sunday, March 27, 2005

In His Image x 3

This might offend some,so move on then and go elsewhere if you might be one of those folk.

Now then, this being Easter Sunday and Jesus’ alleged resurrection and all that, I was thinking what better time than to take a quick look at three of the more interesting portrayals of the Son of God on the silver screen.

ultrachriSubmitted first, is Jonathan C. Green in the outrageous, Ultrachrist! where Jesus comes back to fight evil as a superhero. This is an amateurish and silly movie, granted, but it does something unique in that amidst all of its goofiness, Christ is actually portrayed as a decent and loving creature. Green is having a ball playing the Lamb as a kick ass hero, and the film’s director, Kerry Douglas Dye (a Philly boy!) seems to take pains in making sure that Christ is not mocked (if that is possible considering many of the situations presented in the film). Still and all, Ultrachrist will offend many, and that’s a shame, because its heart is clearly in the right place.

Next up is Ted Neely in Norman Jewison’s adaptation of Jesus Christ Superstar. While Neely bares a striking resemblance of the “white Jesus” many of us grew up seeing, and his acting is quite good, …Superstar, is ultimately a rock opera, and his vocals just don’t cut it. His voice is thin and reedy and frankly does not pack the punch that it should (compare Neely’s voice with that of Ian Gillan’s on the original concept recording, there is no doubt that Neely is just not getting it).

Finally, for camp value alone, one can not beat NBC television’s movie, Jesus, that played a few years back and featured, amongst it’s stellar cast, Debra Messing (yes, Grace of Will and Grace) as Mary Magdalene. If there is any reason to watch this TV movie it is to see the delectable Jeremy Sisto in the title role. Around these parts, we dubbed him “Hot Jesus” after seeing him play the Messiah with flowing Breck hair and dreamy eyes…and with that said, I am jumping into my hand basket and heading straight to hell!

Happy Easter All!

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