Once more with Passion

From pollywog, of Pinoyexchange:


Oh yes! Oh, this is good--really good. Well written, balanced, with valid criticisms. Well done!

I would point out several serious flaws to the article, however:

1) He mentions the use of Anne Catherine Emmerich but doesn't deal with the problem of her anti-Semitism, or the authenticity of her writings. And he doesn't mention Brentano.

2) He doesn't mention the places where the movie departs from the guidelines on presentation of passion narratives, or how it contradicts the Catholic church's Nostra Aetate, cut-and-pasting gospel narratives to present a MORE anti-Jewish portrait than the gospels have themselves (he also doesn't mention the fact that while passion dramatizations are common, they are also commonly and historically anti-Jewish).

3) He compares the movie (correctly, I think) to the anti-Semitism of Jesus Christ, Superstar; and while it's true Gibson cast a Jew for Jesus mother, Jesus himself is NOT played by a Jewish actor (just like in Superstar), and as I've noted before, all the sympathetic Jews and gentiles are already proto-Christians (Pilate, Simon). Anyone struggling to retain the integrityh of orthodox Judaism is unremittingly evil.

I'd also add that Superstar mitigates the anti-Jewish flavor by presenting more of Christ than Passion does; that is, he shows how much Christ is a troublemaker and revolutionary, and provided Caiaphas with a motive--a reasonable, understandable one--for wanting him dead.

In short, he's seen the movies, and considered the thoughts, but he hasn't quite reasoned them out.

4) As for pornography...this guy hasn't seen much porn, I would guess. He talks about porn titillating, and good porn does that (bad porn just baldly shows it all); soft-core porn, especially of the Japanese kind (the "roman porno" or "pinku" films) will, like the scourging sequence, turn away from the, uh, bald facts to tease you into wanting to see more.

As a matter of fact, I've seen better made "pinku" films, films that tease and tease with sex, in a more imaginative and oblique manner, and actually show subtle performances and maybe even say something about the human condition, than Passion does with violence.

And there's also the time spent dwelling on various details, a necessary tactic to allow the porn viewer to, uh, achieve satisfaction . Passion clearly shows the same kind of strategies.

As the writer himself admits, he is probably an innocent. I like to think that says more in his favor as a person than not, but it does undermine his arguments against the movie's pornographic elements.

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