Everyone's up in arms about Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ. The idea is that this film will be a no-holds-barred, brutally realistic depiction of that historic event. But here's the word I have problems with: historic. In what seems to be an attempt to create a heightened sense of reality, the film is in Aramaic and Latin. But very few people in Judea at the time of the crucifixion would have been speaking Latin. The dominant language would have been Greek. Aramaic's a correct choice, to be sure, but the use of Latin seems to reflect common misperceptions about the Roman Empire in that corner of the world (as if, because they were Romans, they had to speak Latin). Also: James Caviezel as Jesus? The image of Christ that is offered by the film is close to the typical Jesus we see depicted in Western art. Of course, it's pretty clear now that the real Jesus almost certainly did not look like that, but rather was darker-skinned and more rough-hewn, so to speak, in his features. He was not the cream-colored, fragile, long-haired hippy lookalike we've been fed over the ages (though, granted, Caviezel does appear to have acquired a tan in the movie). So, my question is, what is Mel Gibson's Passion being faithful to? This is supposed to be the Passion as it really happened, isn't it? Or at least as the gospels say it happened. Instead, it looks like it's going to be little more than a violent reworking of the standard Hollywood treatment of the tale, with, potentially, more overt blame placed on the Jewish priests. (I won't even get into the whole anti-Semitic controversy surrounding this film, which by now is pretty well-known). Nonetheless, I can't say I'm not eagerly anticipating the film's release. It's been a long and controversial journey to the screen and, love it or hate it, the movie's going to be an event in its own right.