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The Apocalypse
The Apocalypse
Actor: Richard Harris; Vittoria Belvedere; Benjamin Sadler; Christian Kohlund; Erol Sander; Ian Duncan (II); Bruce Payne; Alessandro Bertolucci; Walter Nudo; Constantine Gregory; Luca Ward; Matt Patresi; Loris Loddi; Massimiliano Pazzaglia; Aaron Johnson (III);
Director: Raffaele Mertes
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Special Interests
UR     2004     1hr 36min

Richard Harris stars as John the Apostle in this new film from the Emmy-Award winning Bible Collection film series. Imprisoned for his beliefs, the last living witness to the Passion of Christ receives visions from the Lor...  more »


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Movie Reviews

A feast for the eyes and food for the soul
Alejandra Vernon | Long Beach, California | 07/13/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Set in 90 AD, this film gives us insight into the lives of Christians who lived under the domination of Roman rule. Emperor Domitian (played with ample dementia by Bruce Payne) is in power, and his goal is to kill every living Christian who does not denounce God and give allegiance to Domitian alone, who has claimed himself god over all things.
The imagery in this film is fantastic; Giovanni Galasso's cinematography is full of rich color, and a feast for the eyes; there are portions that are like liquid works of art, and I never tire of watching them, in fact, several viewings are needed to fully appreciate the creative magic of the photography. The brilliance of the palette reminds me of the heyday of Technicolor, with its opulent reds, greens and blues.

The great Richard Harris is the apostle John, and it is one of his last appearances on film. Harris, who was so terrific starring in the cable television Bible Series production of "Abraham" in 1994, has less to do in this film, but with his weathered face and fabulous voice is wonderful. The attractive cast that surrounds him is excellent, with Vittoria Belvedere, Benjamin Sadler and Ian Duncan in the leads. Christian Kohlund is also impressive as Quintus Maximus.
The lavish sets and authentic looking costumes lend credibility to a film that is largely about John's visions, and are a good contrast to the "New heaven and new earth" of the beautiful, light-filled revelations given to the apostle.

Kudos to director Raffaele Mertes who directs with the eye of an artist (he was cinematographer for seven of the other Bible Series productions and director for "Esther"), and another great talent from the same series of films is the award-winning composer Monsignor Marco Frisina, who for this production was also Biblical Consultant, as well as giving us an atmospheric, lovely soundtrack.
Total running time is 96 minutes, for this marvelous telling of the apostle John's final days on the island of Patmos."
Decatur Redd | Decatur,GA | 01/15/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Words cannot describe my loss for words behind watching the late Richard Harris's portrayal of the Apostle John in the APocalypse. Considering that John is my favorite Disciple/Apostle and New Testament writer, and considering the fact that there are not many films out there that have attempted to portray life in 90 A.D. for Christians under the rule of the Emperor Domitian,during John's exile on Patmos and his writing of the Revelation(the only other such work is St. John in Exile, a live, one-man performance by Dean Martin), to visualize for the 1st time what I've only been able to read for years in the Bible and other historic accounts took my breath away. As far as the details are concerned, I'll only say ditto to the most recent online reviews and will go on to say that it's the 1st movie since the Passion to have me in tears from start to finish as Richard Harris, in my opinion, captured the Apostle's character, zeal, and passion for Christ. A masterpiece and a superb companion to the Passion of the Christ and/or the Gospel of John."
Great Acting, Great Costumes, Sets & Scenery, but Too Little
Bryan E. Leed | Dayton, OH USA | 08/30/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)

"I was disappointed in how little of the book of REVELATION is in this film. They only have about 15 minutes of Revelation sprinkled throughout the film, usually just John witnessing events beginning in Heaven, up in the clouds.

Once you get past the disappointment of anemic scriptural content, then you can still enjoy the acting and sets. The actor playing John is SUPERB and has the classic look that you would expect of an elderly apostle.

This film DOES do a good job of showing the audience what the life of John the Apostle could (?) have looked like during his final years in prison, where he wrote the book of REVELATION.

They introduce a small group of faithful followers who surround John, even in prison, and a Roman spy sent to find out who is still out there "turning the world upside-down," so to speak, by continuing to write scripture for the early scattered churches in different cities.

THE APOCALYPSE does a good job of showing the era and living conditions, and the main actors are all likeable, but there is too much NON-scriptural story content, when I would have prefered 90 minutes of a dramatized telling from the actual Bible book of Revelation.

This movie is okay, but there are much better Bible films on DVD to be had for the money. Try THE BIBLE COLLECTION DVDs from TNT that are now out on DVD, such as JOSEPH and JACOB, and also look for THE BIBLE SERIES BOX SET, with DVD movies about ESTHER, JEREMIAH, and SOLOMON, instead of THE APOCALYPSE."
Apocalypse Revealed.
Teófilo de Jesús | USA | 05/14/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Folks, The Apocalypse is a retelling of the book of Revelation as received by the Apostle John, produced by Italian Radio TV. It is a very Catholic movie, as most of the consultants were Catholic and at least one Orthodox and it shows. But it is not blatantly Catholic, so basically any Christian will enjoy watching the movie.

You all know Richard Harris. His filmography is quite extensive and includes The Guns of Navarone (1961), The Bible (1966) titled The Bible... In the Beginning (in USA) & La Bibbia (in Italy), A Man Called Horse (1970), and two Harry Potter movies. The Apocalypse is his last movie and he delivers a powerful performance as John the Apostle. There's something about his raspy voice, which sounds old yet vital, imbued with authority and compassion that moves the viewer to listen carefully. All his actions seemed to very deliberate but not forced, very natural, without conceit. What an actor!

Actors Vittoria Belvedere and Benjamin Sadler play "Irene" and "Valerius" respectively, in a supporting role. Theirs is the "mandatory love affair" that we often see in these kinds of movie, but I assure that this affair is not vulgar, nor does it eclipse the plot. Irene had met the Apostle John when she was younger and now she's sent by the Bishop of Ephesus to track the Apostle in order to ensure the authenticity of the Apocalypse. Valerius is a Roman officer whose parents were Christians, having been adopted by a Roman general. He infiltrates the Ephesian Church, his mission being to locate the Apostle John, but he has second thoughts and...well, watch the movie.

The movie's strong points lie on its special effects. They carry the story well, without overwhelming it. John tells the story, and you see what he sees. Although the director-Rafaelle Mertes-threaded some current events into the movie to illustrate its prophetic aspects-including scenes from 9-11 to picture "war"-he does it without forcing the biblical text into modern fulfillments. What the director achieves is a correspondence of ideas. This is no "rapture" movie a la Left Behind..

The Apocalypse is a part of the The Bible Collection produced by Italian Radio-Television. This is the kind of movie that we must support. I hope you watch it"