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네이티비티 스토리 (The Nativity Story)
Title: The Nativity Story
Genre: Drama
Starring: Shohreh Aghdashloo, Hiam Abbass, Keisha Castle-Hughes
Director: Catherine Hardwicke
Producers: Marty Bowen, Wyck Godfrey
Release Date: Dec. 21, 2006


Australian-born Whale Rider sensation Keisha Castle-Hughes stars opposite Oscar-nominee Oscar Isaac in Lords of Dogtown director Catherine Hardwicke's dramatic account of the Immaculate Conception, and the arduous journey of Mary and Joseph to give birth to baby Jesus. House of Sand and Fog's Shohreh Aghdashloo co-stars in a film with a screenplay by The Rookie and Finding Forrester scribe Mike Rich. Filmed in the village of Matera, Italy (a locale that has remained virtually untouched by modern progress and also served as the backdrop for Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ) and Quarzazate, Morocco, former production designer Hardwicke's film strived for authenticity in telling the The Bible's most treasured tale.

네이티비티 스토리 (The Nativity Story)

Movie Review: The Nativity Story

By Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune Movie Critic

Few stories are more familiar than the one told in "The Nativity Story"—a new film about the trials of Mary and Joseph, the journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem and the birth of Christ. So it seems a wonder at times that director Catherine Hardwicke and writer Mike Rich still manage to make the tale seem fresh and vital.

Their movie is reverent without seeming too pious-minded and loving without being sticky. And it has actors in the central roles, Keisha Castle-Hughes and Oscar Isaac, who are young, beautiful, even a bit lusty-looking, and who don't fit the usual cliched image of Mary, the immaculate virgin, and Joseph, her aging protector.

Hardwicke became famous for "Thirteen," a realistic contemporary drama about youthful delinquency and sexuality—and, as you'd expect, she doesn't deliver a typical religious movie. Covering the events from the time of Zechariah's vision in the temple up to Herod's massacre of the innocents, and the flight of Mary and Joseph into Egypt, Hardwicke and Rich retell the story with art and simplicity, without the characters becoming creche figurines.

Herod's massacre is their framing device. We see the mad monarch ordering the slaughter at the beginning, and then we move back to the events that led up to it: the birth of John the Baptist, the lunacies of Herod and his tax plan, the long journey of Joseph and Mary into Bethlehem, and the Nativity as witnessed by the shepherds and the Three Wise Men—Gaspar, Melchior and Balthasar. Throughout, Hardwicke keeps us aware of the danger and primitivism of the places around Mary and Joseph—and Jesus.

This movie isn't an intense visceral shocker like Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ." Nor is it a groundbreaking neo-realist depiction, like Pier Paolo Pasolini's 1964 "The Gospel According to St. Matthew"—although Hardwicke stages much of her film near the ancient but well-preserved Italian village of Matera, where both Gibson and Pasolini shot the main parts of their movies.

The moviemakers haven't embossed "Nativity Story" with greeting card imagery or sentimentalized, overdramatized or stuffed it with contemporary political parallels. Instead, they've told the story with a measured seriousness but also with an often fiery, youthful quality.

New Zealander Castle-Hughes, the young Oscar-nominated star of "Whale Rider," brings this film some of the liveliness and joy that infused that role. Isaac is a 2005 graduate of the Juilliard Academy, and he brings the part a freshness and vulnerability it usually doesn't have.

Herod is the Irish actor Ciaran Hinds, who played Julius Caesar in HBO's "Rome." Others in the cast include Hiam Abbass ("Paradise Now") as Anna, Mary's mother, and Shohreh Aghdashloo, the Oscar-nominated Iranian actress who played the wife in "House of Sand and Fog," is Elizabeth, Zechariah's wife and John's mother. A hunky-looking actor, Alexander Siddig, is the Angel Gabriel, and the interchanges among the Wise Men, especially the ones involving skeptical Gaspar (Stefan Kalipha), are often played for a bit of gentle humor.

Scriptwriter Rich, who initiated the project, has gone to great lengths to keep the characters plausibly motivated and the movie tasteful. And Hardwicke, who began her film career as a production designer, has done her best to make it look and sound beautiful. The modernistic score is by Mychael Danna, who works most often with Canada's often audacious experimentalist Atom Egoyan ("The Sweet Hereafter").

"The Nativity Story" surprised me. I didn't expect such an obvious art film approach. Yet the Bible, in the King James version, is great English literature, and it's just as capable of a more elevated style—as we see in John Huston's epic "The Bible"—as it is of the popular storytelling we see in the shamelessly operatic Cecil DeMille movies, or the gorier excesses of Gibson's "Passion." "Nativity Story" lacks a certain excitement and narrative depth, but it is capable of pleasing, on some level, believers and skeptics alike. Ironically, it became embroiled in a local political-religious controversy when the city turned down a proposed sponsorship from the film's studio for this year's Christkindlmarket—an arrangement that would have involved showing clips from the film.

I wasn't much moved by "Nativity"—perhaps it was too careful and intelligent—but, as I watched it, I could sense some of the urgency of its belief, the universality of its themes of God, loneliness and redemption. "Nativity" is a movie that may not take full advantage of its tale but doesn't betray it either.

네이티비티 스토리 (The Nativity Story)

Cast & Crew

Keisha Castle-Hughes - (Mary)
Oscar Isaac - (Joseph)
Hiam Abbass
Shaun Toub
Alexander Siddig
Said Amadis
Ciarán Hinds
Shohreh Aghdashloo - (Elizabeth)

Director: Catherine Hardwicke
Screenwriter: Mike Rich
Producers: Marty Bowen, Wyck Godfrey
Official Website:
Release Date: December 21, 2006
Genre: Drama

네이티비티 스토리 (The Nativity Story)

Synopsis: The Nativity Story

마리아와 요셉, 위대한 역사의 시작을 알리는 특별한 여정!

기원이 시작될 무렵, 헤롯(헤로데)왕의 가혹한 독재정치는 점점 그 힘을 더해가고 높아가는 세금과 가난으로 인해 유대(유다)에는 메시아의 탄생을 예언하는 자들이 늘어만 간다. 한편 가난한 마리아의 아버지는 마리아를 목수 청년 요셉과 결혼시키기로 한다. 그것은 그들 가족의 안전과 마리아를 위해서 할 수 있는 유일한 탈출구. 그러나 아직 16살에 불과한 어린 마리아는 갑작스런 결혼 이야기가 혼란스럽기만 하다.

그러던 어느날 올리브나무 아래에서 쉬고 있던 마리아에게 천사 가브리엘이 찾아온다. 그는 그녀에게 하나님(하느님)에 의해 선택 받은 자라 칭하며 아들을 낳을 것이니 그의 이름을 예수라 하고 그가 세상을 구할 것이라고 예언한다. 어린 나이에 결혼하는 것도 혼란스러운 차에 결혼도 하기 전에 임신이라니…게다가 유대(유다)에서 미혼모는 경멸과 치욕의 대상이 되지 않은가? 그럼에도 불구하고 마리아는 신의 계시를 받아 들이기로 하고 역시 하나님(하느님)의 계시로 노년에 임신을 한 엘리사벳을 찾아가는데…

엘리사벳을 통해 더욱 믿음을 확신하게 되는 마리아는 역시 천사 가브리엘을 통해 예수 탄생의 예언을 접한 요셉과 함께 베들레헴으로의 기나긴 여정을 시작하게 된다.

네이티비티 스토리 (The Nativity Story)

About the Movie: The Nativity Story

아기예수의 위대한 탄생을 사실적으로 그린 영화!

이번에 공개된 <네티비티 스토리-위대한 탄생> 예고편에는 예수가 탄생하기 전의 나사렛(나자렛)과 베들레헴 마을의 모습, 처녀의 몸으로 기적적인 잉태를 한 마리아, 그녀와 아기를 지키는 요셉의 모습들을 보여주고 있다. 특히나 마리아와 요셉이 나사렛(나자렛)마을을 떠나 베들레헴으로의 길고 험난한 여정과 동방박사들이 사하라 사막을 건너는 모습들은 실제 나사렛(나자렛) 지역과 사하라에서 촬영되거나 이태리와 이스라엘에 재현된 세트에서 촬영되었다. 이렇듯 실제 배경이었던 나사렛(나자렛)마을과 베들레헴, 이태리, 모로코, 사하라 사막을 아우르는 다국적인 촬영은 놀라우리만큼 사실적인 영상으로 다가와 마치 그 시대의 모습을 옮겨 놓은 듯한 착각마저 불러 일으키면서 영화를 더욱 정교하면서 완성도 높게 만들어준다.

알려지지 않은 예수탄생 과정을 실감있게 묘사

마태복음(마테오복음)과 누가복음을 바탕으로 그 동안 사람들에게 잘 알려지지 않았던 예수 탄생의 과정을 상업 영화로써는 최초로 그리고 있는데, 기적적인 잉태로 인해 마리아와 요셉이 겪은 혼란과 고뇌가 실감나게 묘사되어 예수의 탄생이 결코 쉽지만은 않았음을 느낄 수 있게 해준다. 아쉽게도 이번 예고편에는 예수의 탄생 직전까지의 영상만 담겨 있어서 성서나 이야기로만 들었던 예수의 성스러운 탄생 장면을 예고편에서 볼 수 없다. 최초로 공개되는 성스러운 장면인 만큼 벌써부터 많은 이들의 관심을 받고 있으며 12월 21일 영화를 통해 직접 확인해 볼 수 있다.

Cast & Crew

감독: 캐서린 하드윅
주연: 케이샤 캐슬 휴즈, 오스카 아이삭
장르: 드라마
등급: 미상
시간: 1시간 41분
개봉: 2006년 12월 21일
제작사: New Line Cinema
배급사: 시네마서비스
수입사: 태원엔터테인먼트

Preview: The Nativity Story

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