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Since the advent of the modern film in the late nineteenth century over one hundred films on Jesus have been made. They tend to come in spurts. About a half-dozen major silent films were produced in the 1920s and 1930s, the most famous of which is Cecil B. DeMille's The King of Kings (1927). After over three decades in which no Jesus film appeared—thanks in part to the Production Code adopted by Hollywood and promoted by the Catholic Legion of Decency—several rmajor films on Jesus were released in the 1960s, and several more in the 1970s, including two musicals. The late 1980s saw the appearance of two somewhat iconoclastic films, Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ (1988), and Denys Arcand's Jesus of Montreal (1989). Two more have appeared very recently, the relatively unnoticed The Gospel of John (2003) by Philip Savile, and Mel Gibson's controversial The Passion of the Christ (2004).


Westar Institute

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The Fourth R

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