Not All Were Fooled II

Paula Fredriksen's TNR review of "The Passion of the Christ" and her account of the politicking ahead of it bears re-reading. Leon Wieseltier also called it like it was:

In its representation of its Jewish characters, The Passion of the Christ is without any doubt an anti-Semitic movie, and anybody who says otherwise knows nothing, or chooses to know nothing, about the visual history of anti-Semitism, in art and in film. What is so shocking about Gibson's Jews is how unreconstructed they are in their stereotypical appearances and actions. These are not merely anti-Semitic images; these are classically anti-Semitic images.

In my forthcoming book, I pondered whether to include Gibson as an exemplar of what's gone wrong with religious fundamentalism in America. i kept it in. It was a critical moment in the political corruption of Christianity in this country.