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August 29, 2006



What might Catholics get upset about? Well...

Oscar Isaac (St. Joseph) isn't as old as he could be, if you go for the ancient tradition of him being an older widower who takes a consecrated virgin for his wife (Ever Virgin implications); however, this might be due to the modern-day bias-toward-creepiness that could come across from an old dude with a young girl.

Further, St. Anne and St. Joachim were said to be childless (by another ancient tradition) except for Mary, so that might be another touchstone.

Since the above are minor traditions, I doubt there will be many ruffled feathers about those. However...

There's always the issue of the angel's salutation - "favored daughter", "highly favored", "freely beloved", or, quite properly, "Full of Grace" (kecharitomene in Greek). A bad translation just stinks, and if they take the Protestant translations there's likely to be an overall bias; of course, I'm sure they'd say the same in return.

Just my initial thoughts.


Will Barrett

Based on the answer pasted below, I will bet it will revolve around the Immaculate Conception and Mary's sinlessness:

It was a balancing act, but there's a key moment when she's visiting Elizabeth. It's a speculative moment, but I think it's very consistent with the Gospels. She asks Elizabeth, "Why has He chosen me?" To me, the choice of Mary to bear the Son of God isn't because she is someone remarkably special, it's because she was representative of every man. She was every person. The mother of this child isn't because she is of overt riches or royal blood, it's because she is mankind. To me, that made it very easy to portray her as a very, very human individual.

c matt

To me, ...

That is very often the difficulty with these kinds of presentations. Its too much about the writer/director, not enough about the subject itself. But then, I don't really see how one gets around that.

I saw some trailers for it in the theater, and it did have a realistic, 1st century look to it. At least the production/cinematography seems very well done (even a little Passionesque).

Andy Nowicki

If this movie is revenential and essentially presents an orthodox account, I for one whouldn't quibble too much over certain details. I look forward to checking it out.

Clare Krishan

Perhaps with the benefit of hindsight (our Christian worldview is formed by the whole of the Gospels, written long after the events of the film occured) we attempt to see too much in a presentation of the dramatis personae? It seems to me it would be perfectly natural for the artists behind this film to attempt to act out the story without that hindsight, an attempt to show how faithful Jews of the day would have encountered the events and responded out of their understanding of the first inklings of Revelation of the great mysteries promised in their holy traditions, unsettling as that may be to modern-day Marian devotees. Isn't that still the challenge for us all, even today? Why did simple shepherd folks and cosmopolitan foreigners "get it," while religious temple-dwellers didn't?

I'm not bothered by a quarrel about Joachim and Anne, but I would welcome it if Simeon and Anna are portrayed - for that could lead us to use our rosary beads as the evangelical tool they were designed to be: to point out the signposts in the rest of the Glory Story! Also a good way to get CCD students to crack open their bibles and check out the narratives as we go forward into year C.

Sr. Lorraine

Sr Rose, our film/media specialist, was asked to give some input for the film. At an early stage of the project she had a meeting with the people from the film company and discussed how Catholics see Mary. They were very open to that and concerned that the film portray her in a way that Catholics would find appealing.
God willing if all goes well we're publishing a book to accompany the film. The purpose of that is to help movie goers profit spiritually from the film.


I love Christmas. Anything to enhance it is great in my book. I hope more of them are made.


I found Rich's interview to be interesting. I think they are trying to make it acceptable to both Protestants and Catholics, so they might leave some things ambiguous or omitted altogether. Regardless, I am looking forward to this film.

Sr. Lorraine...I'm interested in the book that you said you will be publishing to accompany the movie (is it the photo book with accompanying Scripture? http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1414314639/ref=wl_it_dp/104-5026060-0296762?%5Fencoding=UTF8&colid=Z2A1YWCNY0OK&coliid=I220KR4KE8TGW2&v=glance&n=283155).

Queen Spoo of

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