This post contains affiliate links. MGT receives a small commission on purchases made using these links. Thank you for your support!
My family and I love watching movies but finding movies that don't make you feel like your soul's on fire (and not like holy fire...like..."just a little closer to hell" on fire) is becoming much more difficult. As harsh as that may sound, the struggle is real when it comes to finding clean family entertainment. So, I try to advocate faith & family-friendly entertainment options when I come across them...
We recently had the opportunity to view Paul: Apostle of Christ on Blu-ray. I was really excited when I was offered this review because I wanted to see it when it came out in theater but I never got the chance.
This film has a PG-13 rating and stars James Faulkner as Paul, Jim Caviezel as Luke, and Olivier Martinez as Mauritius, the prison prefect.
While I'm not too familiar with James Faulkner or Olivier Martinez, I've been a long time fan of Jim Caviezel's work. I think he was phenomenal in Passion of the Christ so, naturally, I was optimistic when I learned he was playing in this film. I was under the impression that he was playing Paul but he actually plays the role of Luke.
It was a little odd to see him play another biblical role. His role as Messiah was so outstanding that that's like his "forever role." Like Elijah Wood will forever be Frodo Baggins...and Daniel Radcliffe will always be Harry Potter. In other words, it's hard to see them in any other role. I'll admit that because of this my expectations were unusually high and I'm not sure it's fair to measure it against a film like Passion of the Christ but I digress.
The basis of the film is Luke traveling to Rome to visit Paul in prison. Luke's goal is to record as much of the early history of the church as he can from Paul before Paul's execution by Emperor Nero. Luke manages to come and go from Paul's jail cell and still bring news and encouragement to other believers.
Meanwhile, Mauritius, the prison prefect, watches Paul and Luke closely. You get get to experience the transformation of this character as he experiences Christ through his observation of and interaction with Paul and Luke.
On the other end, you get a sense of the fear and uncertainty that believers faced during that time. The film does a good job at capturing their humanity and their reactions to what was going on around them. People like to visual them (particularly the Apostles) as without flaw but they too experienced fear, doubt, and the like. Yet, we find encouragement in the fact that, even in the midst of persecution and uncertainty, they persevered. I definitely appreciated the director's efforts in portraying this particular piece.
As far as films go, I think it was good. It's a believable portrayal of Paul's imprisonment in Rome. Of course, there's the obvious add-ons for entertainment purposes. The directors did a decent job at creating a setting that was believable though I think the portrayal of the persecution believers faced was way underplayed...it's more or less insinuated. That wasn't a dealbreaker however. In fact, it makes for a more "family-friendly" film. So, if Passion of the Christ was too graphic for your taste, Paul: Apostle of Christ will probably be much more your speed.
While there was the occassional "oh no!" moments that leave you sad, it was pretty even-keeled throughout. This wasn't an issue for me as I have a pretty long attention span and my familiarity with Paul's story kept me engaged. Plus, it's always interesting to me to see the interpretation of scripture through someone else eyes.
In short, if you're looking for the super climactic, has you on the edge of your seat movie, this may leave something to be desired. But if you enjoy watching movies with historical significance and don't mind following along at at steady pace, I think it's worth checking out. To better understand and connect with the believers of that time and to be inspired by their perseverance...it's more than worth it.
Until next time,
**DISCLAIMER: I received this product free in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions discussed in this review are my own.**
Hi there! My name is Brittany..help meet to T.J. and mom to 5 little blessings. My passion lies in helping other women to see their value through the eyes of their creator. Be Encouraged...YOU are a Good Thing!