.- The film is out and reactions are pouring in. Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of The Christ” was finally released in theaters yesterday after months of controversy being reported in the press, and it has elicited a range of very emotional responses from audiences. Theaters have reported moviegoers leaving the film crying or red-eyed, but for different reasons. Some viewers have commented that the film was moving, while others found it too violent and anti-Semitic. Some theaters have even reported walkouts mid-film due to the violence.
Sydney’s archbishop, Cardinal George Pell, admits that the film is violent but he stressed that its most important element is that it “shows us how Jesus redeems us from our sins.”
The cardinal thinks the film is neither anti-Semitic nor laying blame for Jesus' death on the Jews. He predicts that generations of believers will see Gibson’s film as a classic, but adds that it is certainly not for the faint-hearted.