Jésus de Montréal (1989)

This is an early film of Québecois film icon Denys Arcand (The Barbarian Invasions). Arcand offers a modern take on who contemporary, secular culture says that Jesus is.

A brilliant actor is offered a role as Jesus Christ in a yearly passion drama at a Catholic diocese and as a producer of the play. He is given license to modernize it's wooden lines and so he begins to fill the cast with derelicts and sidelined actors. He also spends time researching facts about Jesus, crucifixion, and the beginnings of the Christian church. While his play, infused with doubt, is a hit among the viewers, it is not well received by the hypocritical supervising priest.

Some Christians could easily take offence to this take on Jesus, but I was refreshed by the message of the film: Jesus was compassionate and just.

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