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Easter Movie Ideas

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Whether you are looking for a deep personal religious experience, a solid egg of inspiration, or something as sweet and light as a chocolate bunny, we hope you find something in our basket of Easter movie suggestions that will suit your family’s taste.

 

“Here is a basketful of Easter movie ideas to share with your family.”

Adaptations of the Biblical Easter Story:

The Greatest Story Ever Told

One of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken, The Greatest Story Ever Told is George Stevens' attempt to bring the New Testament to the silver screen. The accuracy of his interpretation of the life of Christ will always be subject to the eye of the beholder, but his reverence for the subject should be obvious to all.

The Gospel of John

The movie, The Gospel of John, takes its script directly from the New Testament. The daunting task of creating an interesting film while adhering solely to Holy Writ is accomplished through the efforts of an incredibly talented cast, including Christopher Plummer as the narrator and Henry Ian Cusick, who portrays Jesus Christ with a strength that is softened by the occasional wry smile.

Veggie Tales: An Easter Carol

Charles Dickens meets Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber in this Veggie Tales direct-to-DVD adventure. Amidst mechanized chickens, plastic eggs, and some ridiculous antics, Veggie Tales: An Easter Carol explains the Christian belief of everlasting life in a simplistic manner --suitable for even the youngest family member.

The Passion of the Christ

Because of its violent and graphic depictions, The Passion of the Christ is not a film for the whole family. But Mel Gibson's visual retelling of the agony of the cross may give some older viewers an appreciation for the suffering endured by Jesus.

Celebrating the Easter Holiday:

Easter Parade

Even though the title song from this musical and dancing spectacular is really the movie's only mention of Easter, family viewers may still enjoy watching the talents of Fred Astaire and Judy Garland as they pay homage to the holiday.

Rise of the Guardians

Who knew the Easter Bunny was one of the five guardians protecting the innocence and imagination of childhood? In this animated adventure he, along with Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman and Jack Frost work together to ward off the scare tactics of the Boogie Man. This tale is equally fun for Easter and Christmas.

Fictional Fare set in Biblical Times:

Ben-Hur

This 1959 Academy Award winner is set during the Roman occupation of Jerusalem during the early AD years. The fictional story centers on Judah Ben-Hur, who is unjustly accused and sentenced to the galleys of a battleship. While his desire for revenge keeps him alive, he is unable to really live until he hears about forgiveness from a condemned Rabbi named Jesus. Boasting the most impressive chariot race ever put to film, this epic contains some violence, lots of action, and a powerful lesson on the destructiveness of hate.

The Robe

Have you ever read the New Testament story of the Roman soldiers who gambled for Christ's clothes on the day of his crucifixion? The Robe offers a fictional account of the impact the garment could have had on the victorious centurion. Weaving a tale of conversion throughout the historical persecutions endured by the early Christians, this movie captures devotion to faith and courage of conviction. Although not gratuitous in its depictions, the brutality of this era plays a central role in this film.

Movies with Moral Messages:

The Chronicles of Narnia, the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

When four siblings (William Moseley, Anna Popplewell, Skandar Keynes and Georgie Henley) discover an old wardrobe is the porthole into a magic snow-covered land, they enter Narnia and soon find themselves helping a lion named Aslan free the inhabitants from an evil enchantment. Those who watch closely will also see an allegory of the life of Jesus Christ.

The Five People You Meet In Heaven

Based on Mitch Albom’s best selling book, this made-for-TV-movie follows the after-death experiences of a man named Eddie (Jon Voight) and the five people he meets there. Each of them is connected with his past, and each help him understand what his life on Earth was all about.

Lilies Of The Field

What does a Baptist handyman, a group of German Nuns, a Catholic congregation of impoverished Mexicans, and a money-wise businessman have in common? Not much -- until a determined Mother Superior manages to get them all involved in building a chapel. How does she do it? A miracle perhaps? Follow the often-humorous (and always deeper than they appear) motives of this diverse group, and see if your own religious shortcomings haven't been captured in one of these characters. A great film for the whole family -- although, like a parable, profound messages await those who look for them.

Faith On Film:

Luther

The life and times of Martin Luther (played by Joseph Fiennes) are recounted in this biographical movie. When the humble German monk begins a private quest for truth, his questions spark a similar desire among his countrymen and detonate an open rebellion against the Catholic Church. Rocking parishioner to pope, and peasant to king, the religious reformation he ignited can still be felt today.

Amish Grace

This made-for-TV movie follows the aftermath of the 2006 school shooting at Nichel Mines, Pennsylvania. After the horrific incident, the Amish people prove they practice the religion they preach by extend forgiveness toward the family of the man who murdered their daughters.

Fiddler On The Roof

Although it may appear to be an odd choice for an Easter list, this story of a poor Jewish family eking out a living in pre-revolutionary Russia has some powerful messages of commitment to faith, love of family, and a willingness to trust in God that are universal to any religious denomination. It is also a reminder of the bitter fruits of religious intolerance.

A Man For All Seasons

When King Henry VIII of England challenges the Roman Catholic Church's stand on divorce, he uses his royal authority to exert the necessary power of persuasion (including bribes, threats, and levying taxes) on the ecclesiastical and political leaders in his own country. But one man refuses to be swayed. This 1966 movie tells the story of the stalwart Sir Thomas More.

The Other Side of Heaven

When a nineteen-year-old boy from Idaho decides to serve a three-year mission in Tonga for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he finds his faith tested by culture shock, language barriers, and missing his true love back home. Based on a true story, the film portrays the miraculous growth that occurs for both the giver and the receiver when they put their trust in God.

Inside The Vatican

National Geographic explores the essence of the smallest sovereign nation in the world when it goes inside the capital of the Roman Catholic Church. Believers and non-believers alike should appreciate the documentary's insights into the history and treasures of this religious institution.

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About the Reviewer: Donna Gustafson

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