Jesus Christ Superstar (1973)

An infectiously fun take on the last weeks of Christ. The music is phenomenal, Carl Anderson is absolutely captivating as Judas, and the visual aesthetic is inventive and engaging.

Framing the narrative from the very beginning as a restaging puts the focus more on interpreting Christ’s life, rather than depicting it. This immediately settles and contextualises many of the more daring aspects of the movie, and it makes sense besides, given that the film itself is an adaptation and interpretation of a broadway musical, itself based on a rock opera concept album, based on a narrative recounting of Christ’s life, based on the Gospels, and so on…Christ in the media is always endlessly filtered throughout centuries of interpretation, so embracing that was a wise choice of the team behind the film.

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The music alone is enough to make it a great film, but there’s plenty else to appreciate here too – the emphasis on Judas’ perspective is compelling, the cinematography is creative, and there’s always some unique visual going on in the frame. I give it three and a half refrains, and a guitar solo.

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