Risen | Chicago Reader

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Rated PG-13 · 108 minutes · 2016

Drama, Spiritual/Devotional
Produced by Affirm Films, the evangelical label of Sony Pictures, this Christian drama takes an irresistible premise—a Roman military tribunal is charged with tracking down the body of Jesus after it disappears from the tomb—and hammers it into unleavened bread. The first half hour is pretty good, particularly as the Crucifixion goes down: an earthquake shakes the Roman palace as Jesus dies, and the stern Clavius (Joseph Fiennes), dispatched to Mount Calvary, sees the body taken down from the cross. Unfortunately, the further this strays from the gospels, the worse it gets; the apostles are all dumbbells, and New Zealand actor Cliff Curtis (Whale Rider) is a bizarre choice to play the Lord (he seems more like Vinnie Barbarino). I could look at Fiennes's closely cropped head all day—it’s so angular it might have been carved from wood—but his character is so underwritten, providing no meaningful entry point into Christ's teachings, that his spiritual struggle is more seen than felt. Kevin Reynolds directed a script he cowrote with Paul Aiello.
Official Site: www.sonypictures.com/movies/risen
Director: Kevin Reynolds
Producer: Mickey Liddell, Patrick Aiello, Pete Shilaimon, Robert Huberman and Scott Holroyd
Cast: Joseph Fiennes, Tom Felton, Peter Firth, Cliff Curtis, María Botto, Luis Callejo, Antonio Gil, Richard Atwill, Stewart Scudamore, Andy Gathergood, Stephen Hagan, Mish Boyko, Jan Cornet, Joe Manjón, Pepe Lorente, Stavros Demetraki, Selva Rasalingam and Manu Fullola

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