I’m actually surprised that this didn’t happen sooner, especially after the success of Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ. I had imagined that Gibson’s gruesome film would have opened the eyes of studio decision-makers to see the potential for violence within the religious text. Instead, the most blatant of the attempts to duplicate Gibson’s success was A Nativity Story, which is another equally well-known story, but one without the amount of violence audiences seem to crave in order to watch this type of material.
The epic ten-part miniseries, “The Bible,” understands the need to embellish and glorify the violent aspects of the text over all else, and that helps to set the series apart from other filmed versions of the same events. There are points within the series that the effects and the action choreography modeled after 300 and the “Spartacus” series. This seems to be in hopes of enticing a mainstream audience into hearing the Sunday school tales, as opposed to the watered down versions that would actually be shown in church.
Although a great deal more material is covered in creative ways, each episode essentially focuses on one major character from the Bible. The first episode begins with a brief introduction from Noah as he drifts through the storm in his arc, but moves on quickly. As each episode focuses on a specific character, it also progresses through the Bible, hitting major points until the finale of Easter’s origin’s, finishing in time to air this past holiday.
All ten parts of the series are fit onto four discs, along with a series of making-of featurettes and a music video. The visual aspects of the series lend themselves to the Blu-ray format, making this a worthwhile package for fans of the series.
Entertainment Value: 7/10
Quality of Filmmaking: 6.5/10
Historical Significance: 6/10
Disc Features: 8/10