Last Temptation of Christ (1988): Scorsese’s Passion Project Starring Willem Dafoe as Jesus

Martin Scorsese’s The Last Temptation of Christ is a thought-provoking and deeply felt drama, adapted from Nikos Kazantzakis’s best-selling novel. This controversial film, condemned by various religious groups, speculates about Jesus’s self-doubts, when he realizes he has been chosen by God to carry His message.

The film contains many moments of power and beauty, and displays a genuine feeling for time and place that makes the story vivid and real. Indeed, The Last Temptation of Christ is a sincere investigation of the subject, made as collaboration between two American filmmakers (director Scorsese and screenwriter Paul Schrader), who have been continuously attracted to serious films (Taxi Driver, Raging Bull) about sin, guilt, and redemption.

Peter Gabriel’s soundtrack is not only stunning, but can also stands on its own.

The cast includes Willem Dafoe as Jesus, Harvey Keitel as Judas, and Barbara Hershey as Mary Magdalene.