The Young Messiah is out on Digital HD today, so here is a round-up of my top stories on that film, which tells the story of Jesus and his family when he is seven years old.
The Young Messiah: a scene guide (w/ clips and references to the scriptures, the apocryphal texts, and the novel)
Last month I wrote up a scene guide for Risen, noting which scriptures different parts of the movie were based on. Now it’s The Young Messiah’s turn — and this time, matters are complicated by the fact that the film is based not directly on the Bible, but on Anne Rice’s novel Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt, which in turn makes use of Old and New Testament apocrypha in addition to the scriptures.
There have been many movies about Jesus, and even a few that have spent some time on his childhood, but there have been none, to my knowledge, that dwell on what it would have been like for Jesus to grow up with brothers and sisters his own age. Indeed, there are very few films that acknowledge the presence of brothers and sisters in Jesus’ adult life, even though the gospels mention his siblings on several occasions. Thus, one of the best things about The Young Messiah — Cyrus Nowrasteh’s long-awaited adaptation of Anne Rice’s novel Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt — is the way it focuses on Jesus’ relatives right from its opening scene.
The Young Messiah comes to theatres this Friday, and I’ll be posting lots of stuff about that all week, including an interview with the film’s director. In the meantime, Anne Rice — whose novel Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt was the basis for the film — has written a guest column for The Hollywood Reporter in which she explains why she wrote the book, and how she feels about the film. Spoiler alert: she likes it.