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Jesus of Nazareth (1977)

Robert Powell , Olivia Hussey  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (973 customer reviews)

List Price: $19.98
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Product Details

  • Actors: Robert Powell, Olivia Hussey, Laurence Olivier, James Mason, Anne Bancroft
  • Writers: Anthony Burgess, David Butler, Franco Zeffirelli, Suso Cecchi D'Amico
  • Producers: Bernard J. Kingham, Dyson Lovell, Lew Grade, Tarak Ben Ammar
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Digital Sound, Surround Sound, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: March 1, 2002
  • Run Time: 382 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (973 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000633QW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,657 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Jesus of Nazareth" on IMDb

Special Features

Interactive menus
Scene access
Cast and crew
Living in biblical times

Editorial Reviews

Robert Powell, Olivia Hussey. Franco Zeffirelli creates an unforgettable portrait in his legendary interpretation of the life of Jesus. James Mason, Anthony Quinn and Anne Bancroft are included in the all-star cast. 2 DVDs. 1977/color/6 hrs., 22 min/NR/fullscreen.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
458 of 467 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE DEFINITIVE FILM ON THE LIFE OF CHRIST! August 3, 2002
After more than two decades, JESUS OF NAZARETH remains the greatest motion picture on the life of Jesus Christ -unsurpassed and second-to-none. Beautifully directed by Franco Zeffirelli (best known for his 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet) and featuring a constellation of the greatest international actors: Sir Lawrence Olivier, Rod Steiger, Anne Bancroft, Ernest Borgnine, James Earl Jones, Anthony Quinn (among others, oh my!), this six-hour magnum opus has given flesh and humanity to the people and events of the Gospel narratives like no other movie before or since.
The film begins with the events prior to the Anunciation and Nativity, through the life of Christ, leading up to the Crucifixion and Resurrection, from Joseph's betrothal to Mary (played by Olivia Hussey, best known for her role as Juliet in the aforementioned film.) to the Empty Tomb on Easter Sunday. First-rate production allows us to observe with great detail the customs and daily life in first-century Judaea. The backdrop of Roman oppression and Jewish discontent is masterfully shown and successfully correlated to Jesus' ministry, in particular the political maneuvering of the cunning Herod (wondrously played by Peter Ustinov) and its effects on messianic expectation. Many persons mentioned only in passing or alluded to in the gospels such as Caiaphas and Pontius Pilate are portrayed with great credibility, allowing us to understand the historical figures' motives and intentions more fully.
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196 of 200 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The greatest version of the greatest story ever told February 24, 2004
Prior to its debut on NBC in April 1977, "Jesus of Nazareth" was the subject of considerable controversy after director Franco Zeffirelli suggested his interpretation of Jesus would veer wildly from previous screen versions of the Gospels. Suspecting Zeffirelli, to say nothing of co-screenwriter Anthony Burgess of "Clockwork Orange" fame, had downplayed or even denied Jesus' divinity, some prominent religious leaders condemned the film, sight unseen, for its alleged blasphemy. One sponsor (General Motors) bowed out, and another stepped in (Proctor and Gamble, years before the company fought off unsubstantiated charges that its logo was Satanic). "Jesus of Nazareth" aired as scheduled, in two parts on two successive Sunday evenings, earning high ratings and praise from critics of all faiths.

"Jesus of Nazareth" is, hands down, the finest dramatic retelling of the life of Jesus to date. As George Stevens did with his 1965 fiasco, "The Greatest Story Ever Told," Zeffirelli recruited an all-star cast, but whereas Stevens could only have hired John Wayne to play a Roman Centurion because the Duke's name would look nice on the posters, Zeffirelli chose his stars because they were gifted actors perfect for their roles.

One doesn't ooh and aah at the sight of Rod Steiger, Anthony Quinn, or Laurence Olivier, but rather marvel at how well they believably bring Pontius Pilate, Caiaphas, and Nicodemus to respective life. As good as they are, the most impressive performance may come from a less illustrious "name," James Farentino, who makes for a very commanding Peter.
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282 of 303 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best Jesus movie ever made February 28, 2000
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
To date, "Jesus of Nazareth" is most certainly the best Jesus movie ever made. Director Franco Zeffirelli presents the story of Jesus Christ in a very authentic manner. This film sticks pretty much to the script, the Holy Bible. This historical account of Jesus starts before the birth of Christ and runs through His life, His substitutionary death for all our sins on the cross, and His reappearance afterward. Much time is spent on our Lord's three-year long mission preaching and performing miracles as an adult on earth, and many scenes are genuinely touching, leaving not a dry eye in the audience. We've first seen this movie when it was released back in the late 70s, and since then we've watched it a few dozen times. The nearly six and a half hours running time are not a bother for those interested in the life of Christ. This picture comes across as a very well funded production and much care has been given to detail. We're certain that most viewers will be touched, aided by Robert Powell's realistic performance and portrayal of our Savior Jesus Christ. This movie will make you think about your personal relationship with God, while you'll enjoy an exceptionally well-made motion picture.
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116 of 122 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A MUST-HAVE FOR EVERY BELIEVER! March 24, 2001
Format:VHS Tape
It is inconceivable that on Amazon there are only 90 reviewers for Franco Zeffirelli's masterful and inspiring masterpiece as opposed to over 2000 for "The Matrix," a less-than-monumental piece of fluff from 1999.
"Jesus of Nazareth" sports a cast of Academy Award-winners (Lawrence Olivier, Anne Bancroft, Ernest Borgnine, and Peter Ustinov, to name a few) and nominees (James Earl Jones, James Mason, Christopher Plummer) as well as a support from an international group of performers. Olivia Hussey brings just the amount of warmth and humanity in the role of Mary; Rod Steiger deftly portrays Pontius Pilate as a man torn between duty to his country and awe of this man called Jesus; Michael York is stunning as John the Baptist.
Robert Powell brings to the movie the definitive portrait of Jesus. His passionate performance is the stuff of legend. Prior to this motion picture, there had been few instances wherein Christ had been seen; it is as if the screen was awaiting the right man for the part. Powell proves that to be true; he is perfect!
If I have motivated even one soul to purchase this masterwork, then I have accomplished the goal of this review. Money could not be better spent.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
Beautiful depiction of the life of our savior and Lord
Published 5 days ago by William Mathews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Terrific tape
Published 6 days ago by Gayle L. Boc
5.0 out of 5 stars This is by far the finest and most realistic depiction of our Lord...
This is by far the finest and most realistic depiction of our Lord ever made. Produced in 1977, the characters are perfectly cast and Robert Powell even became a Christian during... Read more
Published 9 days ago by Charles H. Coppes
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Film on Christ
For me, this is the best film on the life of Jesus Christ I've seen. An all star cast at their peak.
Published 9 days ago by Richard
5.0 out of 5 stars I've seen lots of Jesus films and this towers above them all
What can I say at this point? It's sublime. Truly the best Jesus on film, and the best of the other individuals that were part of story. Read more
Published 12 days ago by W. Marquand
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Jesus mini-series made.
Robert Powell did an excellent job as Jesus. Notice how he rarely blinks his eyes. It really adds to the character without being over the top.
Published 12 days ago by Marc Morgan
5.0 out of 5 stars a very good movie
so glad I received this quickly.
Published 13 days ago by Sarah Gregory
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great movie..the best Jesus movie ever hands down ! acting was great !
Published 15 days ago by Edwin Montilla
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
brilliantly and ACCURATELY done.
Published 16 days ago by pythagoras
5.0 out of 5 stars This movie moved me to tears. I was transported ...
This movie moved me to tears. I was transported to a different time and it gave me a deeper understanding of his life and journey.
Published 17 days ago by Bex
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Fearful atheists

Terrified, frightened. Yes we feel these emotions because you don't practice what Christ preached of love, acceptance and tolerance. In fact I cannot remember the last time tolerance and Christianity was used in the same sentence. Who cast the first stone here? Maybe if modern day... Read More
Apr 24, 2014 by Jeremy |  See all 9 posts
No subbies in any language, just closed captions in English
Apr 5, 2010 by Eric Pregosin |  See all 4 posts
Jesus Christ really existed. Be the first to reply
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