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The Bible: The Epic Miniseries

MPAA Rating: Not rated
not reviewed
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Primary Audience:
Teens Adults Kids
Genre:
Drama Television
Length:
7 hr. 20 min.
Year of Release:
2013
USA Release:
March 3, 2013
DVD: April 2, 2013
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Relevant Issues
Copyright, History Channel

How do we know the Bible is true? Answer

When we say that the Bible is the Word of God, does that imply that it is completely accurate, or does it contain insignificant inaccuracies in details of history and science? Answer

INFALLIBILITY—How can the Bible be infallible if it is written by fallible humans? Answer

Answers to supposed Bible “contradictions” and puzzles

Is the Bible truth or tabloid? Answer

Bible archaeology

INTERNAL HARMONY—Answers to a skeptic’s questions about whether the Bible’s internal harmony is truly evidence of its divine inspiration—Read

Bible and science

Biblical prophecies

God’s Story Online home
Do you understand God’s Story? Take a multimedia journey through the Bible, from Creation to eternity. Hear and read an exciting summary of the Bible’s most important records, in chronological order.
Featuring: Keith David … Himself—Narrator
Darwin Shaw … Peter
Diogo Morgado … Jesus Christ
Roma Downey … Mother Mary
Andrew Scarborough … Joshua
Paul Brightwell … Malchus
Greg Hicks … Pilate
Sebastian Knapp … John
Amber Rose Revah … Mary Magdalene
Adrian Schiller … Caiaphas
Andrew Brooke … Antonius
Louise Delamere … Claudia
Matthew Gravelle … Thomas
Simon Kunz … Nicodemus
Joe Wredden … Judas
Fraser Ayres … Barabbas
Khalid Ben Chegra … Phicol
Paul Marc Davis … Simon/ Simon the Pharisee
Paul Freeman … Samuel
Michael Legge … Stephen
Francis Magee … Saul
Fintan McKeown … Abimelech / Ekosh
Mohamen Mehdi Ouazanni … Satan
Soraya Radford … Hagar
Director: Crispin Reece
Tony Mitchell
Christopher Spencer
Producer: LightWorkers Media
Richard Bedser … executive producer (10 episodes)
Mark Burnett … executive producer (10 episodes)
Roma Downey … executive producer (10 episodes)
more »
Distributor: History Channel

Here’s what the distributor says about their film: “The Bible comes to life in HISTORY’s epic new series. From Genesis to Revelation, these unforgettable stories unfold through live action and cutting-edge computer-generated imagery, offering new insight into famous scenes and iconic characters. Created by producer Mark Burnett and featuring an international cast that includes Roma Downey, this docudrama explores the sacred text’s most significant episodes, including Noah’s journey in the ark, the Exodus and the life of Jesus.

Noah endures God’s wrath; Abraham reaches the Promised Land but still must prove his faith in God; Moses leads the Israelites out of Egypt, and his faith in God is rewarded when the Red Sea parts to allow the Israelites to escape Pharaoh’s chariots; Moses delivers his final message from God—the Ten Commandments.

Joshua conquers Jericho; Delilah betrays Samson as the Israelites battle the Philistines; Samuel anoints David king, a move that could throw the nation into civil war; Saul is consumed with jealousy when David defeats Goliath; King David ushers in a golden age for Israel, but is soon seduced by power and lust for Bathsheba; God forgives David, and his son, Solomon, builds God’s temple in Jerusalem.

The Jews are enslaved in Babylon; Daniel is thrown into the lions’ den, but when his faith endures and God spares him, the Jews are allowed to return to Jerusalem; the Angel Gabriel tells Mary she will bear a child; Joseph takes Mary to Bethlehem for the census, where Jesus is born; the Holy family escapes Herod’s order to kill Bethlehem’s male babies; Judea comes under the ruthless rule of Pilate; John baptizes Jesus, who is now ready to take on his mission—and his revolution.

Jesus feeds the crowds in Galilee and brings a dead man, Lazarus, back to life; Jesus enters Jerusalem riding on a donkey—a declaration that he is the Messiah; Jesus turns on the money-changers in the Temple; Caiphas coaxes Judas into betraying Jesus; Jesus throws the disciples into turmoil at the Last Supper; Jesus is arrested and condemned to death as the disciples scatter.

Peter denies Jesus, and Judas hangs himself; the crowd clamors for Jesus’s death; Jesus is crucified, but when Mary Magdalene goes to his tomb, a figure walks towards her—he is back; Jesus commissions the disciples to ‘go and preach to all creation,’ but their godly mission meets with hatred and even death; Paul has a vision and experiences a miraculous change of faith on a journey to Damascus; John receives a revelation—Jesus is coming back, and all who keep the faith will be rewarded.

Reportedly the production consulted 47 theological advisers, including Rick Warren pastor of Los Angeles’ Saddleback Church, and one rabbi.”


Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive
Positive—From when I first heard about this series when going to see a movie in the theater, I have been really looking forward to it. I was excited by the fact that the special effects would not be cheesy like some other Christian movies that are made (I’m a real movie buff), but I also knew with this being made in modern day America and in modern day Hollywood that there would be some compromises on certain things. Overall, though, I was very pleased with the end result and believe that everyone should watch this series at least once (I plan to buy it when it is released).

I noticed that many of the other viewer comments were negative due to the inaccuracies of the series, which is what made me want to write a positive review for it. My personal opinion about the inaccuracies is that I obviously would have liked them to not be there, but found that they were a good way to check yourself on the accounts. While watching it with my family, we pointed out different things that were taking place and saying things like “didn’t this happen a little differently” or “they left out this detail”. It is convicting, in a way that it makes you want to know your Bible better. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Austin, age 19 (USA)
Positive—I cannot believe this series has not received one positive comment yet. I am a Pastor, and I realise the many errors in the series. But I also realise that many people are being introduced to the basic message of God’s love, the sacrifice of Christ for their sins. People are being drawn to God. Yes, God can use a flawed TV series to bring people to Himself. Instead of complaining how inaccurate this show is, pray for the viewers that they themselves would be brought into a personal relationship with Jesus and read the Bible for themselves! I have read the interviews with the creators of the series (who are Christians). Their heart is in the right place. I very much enjoyed the series even with its flaws. Remember… You and I are flawed, too. …
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Pastor Scott, age 39 (Canada)
Positive—In all honesty, I loved this series! I was shocked at the negative comments, because they wanted nothing but perfect perfect perfect everything. We gotta realize that it was man who made that movie, so of course, it may not all be perfect! If a person wants to come to Christ, are you going to sit there, and preach a novel, of how bad they used to be? Are you going to criticize what that person has on, and say that he looks unworthy to have the presence of Jesus Christ enter their heart?

Look, God knows that we are not perfect, we constantly sin, and we constantly make mistakes! I’m not concerned with overextended sword fight scenes, or added script! Realize that everything that is told in the Bible, are just the most important things we all need to know as Christians! I’m pretty sure Jesus told more sermons, said more things, and showed his love for many people! Just because his whole entire lifeline wasn’t recorded in the Bible, doesn’t mean it’s “bad” or “evil.” more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Mari, age 18 (USA)
Positive—This was AWESOME! I was really surprised to read so many negative comments. The fact that so many people watched this series, that probably don't have much to do with God, is amazing. Sure it was about 30% off in its accuracy, but the main parts of the story were right on. It wasn't meant to be a total accurate movie of all things that happened, and I don't know why they did change some things… the important thing to look at is how many millions of people saw the story of the Bible!

I was really encouraged too, to see so many of the things I have read about, acted out. I will definitely watch it again and have my Bible by me so I can confirm what is accurate and what is not. It’s a GREAT series! It’s about reaching the lost, and the way they did this series, did exactly that!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Samantha Taylor, age 38 (USA)
Positive—I must admit that I am shocked by all the negative comments by “Christians”. The movie makers themselves explain that this series was not accurate, but also that it’s purpose is to stay true to the spirit of the stories in the Bible. I’m sure people can understand how difficult it would be to accurately tell the stories of the Bible in such a small time span. In the end, the purpose of this series is not to take the place of the Bible in any sense, so it pointless to quote scripture saying that it was wrong to add or take away from the Bible. It would be like saying the movie The Ten Commandments did not include the whole Bible so it was wrong to show it.

But perhaps it may help to know that one of the makers stated one of her hopes was to show the stories of the Bible with such drama that it would draw people back to reading them in the Bible. I did notice many inaccuracies and deviations, but I was pleased to see the stories displayed in a dramatic manner that many people can find enjoyable. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Troy Mendez, age 38 (USA)
Positive—I watched the first part of the mini series… “The Bible” tonight and absolutely loved it. I cannot wait till the next part comes on. So far excellent in all areas. I wish we had more inspirational series like this on TV. I miss the shows like… “Highway to Heaven”… “Touched By an Angel”… and good wholesome family shows that has moral values.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Sheila Christiansen, age 51 (USA)
Neutral
Neutral—I don’t get this at all. They have all these production values, a huge audience, the best stories out there, nice actors, so why do they have to do their own thing? I’ve been teaching Sunday School for the last 22 years, I’m excited that my young kids are more interested in the Bible because of this series, they do a nice job with much of this. But ninja angels at Sodom? A black Samson? A middle-aged David taking Goliath down? I don’t think so. And I’m only two episodes in. There’s so much that can be done with the actual, real stories that these deviations are at least a distraction and at most something much worse. People shouldn’t be telling “Bible” stories with their own other agenda, then that’s no longer the Bible. If they want to call it the “Bible,” they should just be telling Bible stories. At the end of the day mildly disappointing, but it cudda been spectacular.
—RN Morton (USA)
Neutral—This was a miniseries that lasted only 10 hours, so, it was not meant to be an accurate depiction of the Bible; it was made to be entertainment. Therefore, I was okay watching it. The acting is so-so, but being made for TV, I wasn’t really expecting Oscar-worthy performances. Being a fan of Noah’s story, I was upset that it only received a few opening seconds, instead of a film in its own right.

My other objection is the amount of blood and violence that is presented in this film; a friend I know wanted to watch it with her kids, but couldn’t because they were too young. However, all in all, this is something that may be enjoyed by families with older children, who may want to discuss the differences between what is shown in the book, the Bible, and what is presented here.

This is something I would maybe buy on the discount shelf, but not something I would pay full-price for when it is available in stores.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Holli, age 22 (USA)
Neutral—It was just OKAY. This is the politically correct version of the Bible. All politically incorrect statements that may offend, that may portray Jesus as being God in the flesh, or that would let one know how to be saved have been carefully omitted. Yet, all the violence has been left in and even over emphasized. It’s hard to squeeze everything in a 10 hour mini series, but I think they could have gotten a lot more in if they would have left some of the violent fight scenes out, and cut down on the artistic licensing that went on.

To me it also moved too fast, and I think was hard to follow if you hadn’t already read the book. Also, the miracle scenes were kind of mundane and dry. It could have used some better special effects to spice things up, but then again, it was more of a documentary than a movie.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Frank, age 44 (USA)
Negative
Negative— I’ve seen all of the “bible” movies, including the animated ones with my children (since the 60s), and this was the most inaccurate and bordering heretical one of them all. I could write for an hour, but I’m going to focus on Jesus. The movie Jesus was not my Jesus that I worship! He was a wimp and confused, especially in the beginning when he “freaked” out about his Dad dying. He says he wanted to be a carpenter; mother and others convince him to follow his spiritual Father. The Bible said he had a mission, and he knew who he was.

I can go on and quote scripture, but I’ll leave that up to anyone who wants to know the real Jesus and what he did for us. There are warnings in the Bible to people who add to it. I hope no one loses his soul because he followed this movie Jesus. Read it for your self, your soul depends on the accurate truth of God’s opinion (He wrote it down in the scriptures!) I hope you find the true Jesus, like I did many years ago. The Bible does say there are many “Jesus” and only one true one, FIND HIM! God Bless you!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—John James, age 54 (USA)
Negative—The source (Bible) is true. This movie is total fiction.
—Anonymous (USA)
Negative—If you are a Roman Catholic, then you will utterly love this movie. As with most of the negative comments, I have to say that this should have been done more accurately in reference to the scripture. I am surprised that no one mentioned the road to Calvary when Jesus receives his cross, he kisses it? Really? And when he falls and His mother comes running through the barrier of Roman soldiers and helps him pick up His cross! Hence the heavy Catholic reference and Mary as co-redeemer with Christ. Utter nonsense and blasphemy.

Rick Warren… Hmm… Mr. “Chris-lam” himself and Joel “Let’s not talk about sin” Osteen, were amongst the historical advisers to the series. I better quit before this doesn’t get posted. Read your Bible and learn the REAL story of God’s plan for humanity. It is ACCURATE!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Dominick Malchiodi, age 50 (USA)
Negative—To try to present the Bible from Genesis to Revelation in less than 10 hours (considering commercial breaks), something will inevitably suffer. Important characters and their stories are glossed over. The part of Genesis that involved man’s creation was told by Noah on a tossing, leaking ark in a flashback format. This also happened to Jacob’s and Joseph’s stories. On the other hand, events that never happened have extended scenes (the sword fight between the angel and the men of Sodom and also Joshua’s spies and the men of Jericho—these fights were never mentioned in the Bible). In fact, there seems to be an extended sword fight in almost every story. If you are looking for an accurate representation of Bible stories, this documentary will disappoint.
—Debbo (USA)
Negative—There are so many errors and misrepresentations that I found myself constantly saying, “you’d think if they were going to do a mini-series on this they’d at least READ it!!” AND while there are many battles in the Bible, this almost seems like merely an excuse to create sword fights and slit throats, as they repeatedly have them in places where the Bible does NOT. This is UNBELIEVABLY bad.
—Anonymous (USA)
Negative—Although the outline comes from the Bible, almost none of the details do! This movie has once again emphatically brought to my remembrance what both Moses and the apostle John taught:

Deuteronomy 4:2—“Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you.” more »
—Anonymous (USA)
Negative—It seems like they are confusing the story of Noah and the Ark with the story of Lot. They show, what appears to be, Noah, his wife and two teenage daughters being close to Noah and then just a glance at another boy doing chores in the ark. Moses is very clear when he states that Noah was about 500 years old (Genesis 5:32) when he had the three sons that joined him on the ark with their wives and that Noah was 600 years old (Genesis 7:6) during the flood. That would make those three sons about 100 years old at that point. I doubt their wives were young teenage girls at the time. There were 8 people saved in the ark (1 Peter 3:20).

Before anybody jumps to the conclusion that nobody knew how to read or write back then and that everything was handed down verbally for centuries, please review Exodus 24:7—“And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the Lord hath said will we do, and be obedient. Moses wrote down what God commanded him in the first five books of the Bible and he commanded the people to read from it regularly.” much more »
—imho-a (USA)
Negative—I’ve read various comments regarding the mini series, but what disturbs me the most is that these individual knew what they where doing when they produce the movie. Dangerous! Extremely Dangerous! We are not calling for perfection, but to be as accurate as possible concerning God’s word. To change God’s word to make it more appealing or to appease a certain audience is denying the authenticity of the one who inspired men to write the word.

I keep the mini series as a discussion tool with my children, friends, church members.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 1½
—Sanford Outlaw, age 59 (USA)
Negative—I’ve read various comments regarding this mini series, pros and cons. As a Christian, I find this series extremely offensive. How can they maintain the spirit of the Bible yet at will change Scripture as they please. It’s not that these individuals are ignorant of Scripture, but they change the content knowingly. That’s dangerous! Very dangerous! Where does it end? One can not affect the authenticity without affecting the author of Scripture.

It is not that we are looking for perfection, but to be as Biblically accurate as possible. It’s appalling Rick Warren and Joel Olsteen who are the general editors would commend this series with their knowledge concerning Scripture, and maybe that’s the problem; both of these gentlemen are liberalist.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 1½
—The Outlaw, age 59 (USA)
Comments from young people
Negative—I was really disappointed when I saw the first episode of this mini series. First things first… it is so not even close to the Bible’s true stories. I mean it feels like the maker and writer of this series wanted to add drama to the Bible when it’s cool without it. I have to say, I was extremely excited to see this series hoping in my mind for a true Bible series.

But sadly this show was WAY off from what the Bible tells us. The first two minutes in the first episode was false. It just makes me sad to think all the people that may not know the Bible very well have watched this garbage. And another thing, very violent… for young children be cautious. There are a lot of scenes of people of all ages being killed. Overall… very disappointed… would not recommend this series… my thought… stay far away from this garbage.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 2½
—Meaghan, age 14 (USA)
Positive—To the people who have been saying, “this movie is fiction,” “you aren’t supposed to add or take from the Bible.” I have one thing to say… when you create a movie that has exactly what the Bible says and does, WORD PERFECT! as you have said it should be. Please stop complaining and judging! A lot of people have put a lot of hard work and effort into creating this movie. So if you don’t like it, go make your own movie, exactly word perfect (as you have said) and then you can complain! people are not perfect. I think this is a lovely movie which helps us to picture what we read in the Bible.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Excellent! / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Ash, age 16 (Australia)
Comments from non-viewers
Negative—I saw the first episode of this “Epic” miniseries, and was thoroughly disgusted with the liberties taken, so I decided not to view the rest of the episodes. Really bad miniseries. Too many inconsistencies with Holy Writ. Abraham never had to be told to have faith, for he was a man of faith. Moses didn’t say that death was coming for them all when the Lord spake unto him that He would smite Egypt and the firstborn of every house of the Egyptians would die. Saul was not covering his feet when David cut off a corner of his robe; Scripture saith that Saul was asleep.

I stopped watching after the first episode, as I was disgusted with what they did with the Biblical accounts. See “The Passion Of The Christ,” the epic six-hour television miniseries “Jesus of Nazareth” and the 1923 and 1956 versions of “The Ten Commandments.” Those productions are excellent, and faithful, with minor deviations, to the Biblical accounts. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: / Moviemaking quality:
—D, age 27 (USA)
Negative—This series shows where most people are at in regards to reading and understanding the Bible. I asked myself, how can someone read the Bible and come up with this? Answer came. This is what the Bible is to those who do not ask for the Holy Spirit’s guidance. This was a disaster. Even secular people not even trying to be Biblically correct, just making a movie, i.e., “The Ten Commandments” strayed, but didn’t butcher it like this series. All I could think was, “This is what watered down Bible studies and preaching do”. It produces people that produce this garbage.

I see that even some pastors think this is okay as an introduction. Are you kidding me? Introduce the Bible to new believers or people that don’t know anything about the Bible with obvious lies. The first episode was irritating and vexed me completely. Abraham’s wife was described as so very beautiful that Abraham had to lie and say she was his sister so he wouldn’t be harmed. They made her look worn down and jealous while the other one was younger. They didn’t show that Hagar was mocking Sarah and showing her son Isaac contempt. I think this story should have been told correctly so people can understand what is going on in the Middle East. more »
—Neleh, age 40 (USA)

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