Saint Peter (TV 2005)
Director: Giulio Base
Writers: Gianmario Pagano, Francesco Arlanch
Stars: Omar Sharif, Daniele Pecci and Flavio Insinna
Saint Peter starts at the foot of the cross, watching Jesus die but is constantly tormented by the thoughts of his denial of the Messiah.
The Disciples meet with him when he returns to Jerusalem where they eagerly await Peter's guidance and leadership since they have nowhere to turn and no idea what to do.
The aged disciple, as he is portrayed (and perhaps, he was), is reluctant to take on the task because of his feelings of betrayal and unfaithfulness even though Mary, the mother of Jesus, compels him.
Even after he appears to be the most qualified because of his faith and wisdom, and even after the resurrection and Jesus' appearances to him, he still remains reluctant.
When he returns home to hide his shame the Disciples and Mary Magdalene come to try to convince him again but gets on a boat to go and do the only thing he is able to do without shame, fishing.
This is where they are able to convince him but he still can't shake off the shame.
After having fished without any success a man along the shore suggests they cast their net on the starboard side, and he was right because of the obvious fact that it was the Messiah, as soon as Peter is sure who it is, he jumps into the water and swims toward him where only Jesus would help him feel worthy of Him and of his gospel.
The story also follows Paul's actions and transformation rather simply and briefly until the time they meet again in Rome where they are to leave their foot prints.
First to the Jew and then to the GreekThe Second major point
of the movie becomes clear when the issue of the distinction between Jews and Gentiles arose.
Matthias was adamant about keeping the customs and traditions of the law, and flagrantly insisted that no one should baptize or enter the house of any unclean person.
Even Peter followed the practice.
Until his meeting with Cornelius, a Roman, and later when Paul started baptizing, does he make the decision that everyone should return to Jerusalem in order to address the issue.
The conclusion was pretty well portrayed by "almost" illustrating that a fisherman casts his nest into the water and makes no distinction as to the type of "fish" he will catch.
Peter in Rome
Most Catholics believe this to be the case (that he went to Rome) and so does the movie, it portrays the whole thing from that perspective.
I am fine with that even though I don't believe that to have been the case.
Most historians and Bible scholars are divided on this issue. While people like me won't accept this theory if it's not in the pages of the Bible.
But it should not be that big of a deal if the essence of Jesus, Peter, Paul, the Apostles, and the TRUTH of the Gospel is portrayed.
Which seems to be the case to some extent, even though TNT produced this adaptation for a TV audience. I feel as though that objective was accomplished.
So now, we find Peter in Rome where he is hailed as a Messiah and he sets out to increase the faith of those in the city of Nero.
The rest of the film, from this point on, turns into a sort of exciting tale with the gladiators, politics and roman ways we are not accustomed to seeing in Bible movies.
But at the same time, there are some ideas toward this last hour of the film that are specifically catered for Catholics.
Most of my criticisms here have to do with theological ideals and may be useless on a site like this...
suffice it to say you will not be all that disappointed if you are not a Catholic but believe in the message of the Cross.
Criticisms that need to be noticed but should not deter you from watching it.
Lower than average acting on part of mostly everyone, even Jesus. (This allows you to be pleasantly surprised during the good scenes)
Couple of the disciples are obviously not Jewish, but flagrantly foreign (likely from the East), as if the director was trying to make a point.
The words of Jesus are too loftily spoken.
I hope you guys like my suggestion and give it a try this Easter season.