Mixed or average reviews - based on 43 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 43
  2. Negative: 9 out of 43
  1. 38
    Gibson mounts a convincing crucifixion, but his victim is the audience. The Passion of the Christ aims its metallic cat-o'-nine-tails at the viewers' nerves.
  2. 30
    While it fails to shed significant new light on its subject, Gibson's film and the all-Jesus-all-the-time attention from the media it's attracted do tell us something somewhat disconcerting about the state of American culture: That the way to make a religion based on love and forgiveness relevant today is to turn it into violent entertainment.
  3. 30
    By embracing the Roman pageant so openly, using all the emotional resources of cinema, Gibson has cancelled out the redemptive and transfiguring power of art. [1 March 2004, p. 84]
  4. Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ is the most virulently anti-Semitic movie made since the German propaganda films of World War II. It is sickening.
  5. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    From my perspective, the film's anti-Semitism is implicit rather than programmatic, and, in the film's current form, a little sneaky.
  6. The visual big top is the scourging and the crucifixion -- again and again, Gibson returns to the blood-letting. Again and again, we're exposed to the clinical repetition of a single act, until an alleged act of passion comes to seem boring and passionless. Is that not a definition of pornography?
  7. 20
    Gibson makes sure that no blow remains unfelt, and his approach can't help but stir the body, but he never touches the soul.
  8. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    This is a two-hour-and-six-minute snuff movie -- The Jesus Chainsaw Massacre -- that thinks it's an act of faith.
  9. If I were a Christian, I'd be appalled to have this primitive and pornographic bloodbath presume to speak for me.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 758 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Dec 31, 2011
    Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" depicts the last 12 hours of Jesus Christ's life before his crucifixion. As a christian myself I really couldn't find much of his teachings and theories of love and forgiveness because movie's pretty much torture porn in a nutshell. However leaving the fact that whenether you're a christian or not, the movie's realistically portrayed as the bible describes it, where he was beaten up by the Romans and was crucified for us. As Roger Ebert says, take it or leave it. Full Review »
  2. Jul 15, 2011
    Im sorry but 47/100 on Critic Reviews? C'mon people! This was, and still remains, as a classic film about the true nature of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. This film will not only bring you to tears, but put a smile on your face once you realize that one man put his own life on the line for us. Christian or non-Christian, you need to see this film. Now. Full Review »
  3. Aug 25, 2011
    The film is so focused on Christ's death and how violent and terrible it was, that the film loses any kind of heart and simply becomes about guilt. Essentially, The Passion is the biggest guilt trip in history. The film offers no insight as to what Christ's death taught any of his followers, and simply tells it's viewer that Christ died for them, and now they have to earn it like in Saving Private Ryan. Nothing is learned, and only guilt is felt. Full Review »