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Jesus of Montreal

October 12, 2015

JOMThis is a French-Canadian film about actors who get drawn into a Passion Play and whose real-life experiences, especially that of the Jesus character, begin to reflect that of the Gospel story. Explorations in Theology and Film: Movies and Meaning – ed. Clive Marsh & Gaye Ortiz pp. 116f

The Judge: [reads court psychologist report] Better adjusted than most of the judges in this court.

Court Psychologist: Having to act in a passion play on the mountain… don’t you ever feel this is ridiculous?

Daniel: No. The subject is great, though not very original.

Court Psychologist: Sure. But this part for an actor is somewhat flimsy, wouldn’t you say?

Daniel: I don’t know. The part of Jesus is not what I would call flimsy work.

Court Psychologist: You did come up with the private conservatory. Wouldn’t you like to have a bright career and play the major theatres?

Daniel: I was away awhile. Seems normal to start at the bottom of the ladder.

René: [as Pontius Pilate] Of what are you accused?

Daniel: [as Jesus] You know that.

René: You belong to a sect? You are another prophet, is that right?

Daniel: Is that what you say? Or are you repeating what you’ve heard?

René: You have spoken of a kingdom that you wish to establish.

Daniel: A kingdom which is not of this world.

René: You mean a sort of Elysium? After death? Have you not preached against Caesar, for the overturning of the Roman order?

Daniel: No.

René: So… what is it that you teach to your disciples?

Daniel: Greater love hath no man than this: to give his life for his friends.

René: You don’t find that a little optimistic as a doctrine? In Rome, you wouldn’t have survived a week.

Martin: Doing tragedy is dangerous.

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