The penultimate scene in KING OF KINGS?
- I watched this film for the first time last night and was impressed by
Ray's attempt to demythologize the divine being as well as placing him
within an historical context that the late professor SG.F. Brandon
(1907-1971) did in his Fall of Jerusalem and the Christian Church
(which I think, first appeared in 1959) and his Jesus and the Zealots
(1967) - which this gentle, learned man (who hoped the Church would
defrock but nobody had the heart to do it) - found to his dismay that
contemporary black American liberation groups loved the book.
I have one question. Since Eiseschitz and others have written about
the post production problems affecting the film, was the scene where
Mary Madgalene recognizes Jesus in mid-shot filmed by another director.
The long shot introducing this scene continues the film's ambiguous
treatment of the Messiah so I'm wondering whether this show was put in
to appease the Bible Belt. The final shadow image at the end leaves
things so positively open and avoids the reductive treatments contained
in most cinematic treatemnts.