1 Apr 2004

Leading Samoan clergy give pre-release advice on Christ film

10:03 am on 1 April 2004

It's been revealed that leading clergy in Samoa were called in by the Censors Board to help rate the controversial film, The Passion of the Christ, before release to cinemas.

The chairman of the National Council of Churches, Rev. Oka Fauolo, secretary Rev. Fepai Kolia and Archbishoip Alapati Mataeliga all attended pre-release screening.

Censors Board chairman, Masinalupe Soa Tusipa, says now that the heads of church have seen it, there's no concern about the appropriateness of Christians viewing the film.

However, Masinalupe warns viewers to be prepared for bloody scenes, some of which he says are unrealistic in their severity.

Rev. Oka Fauolo describes the film as 30 percent in line with gospel and 70 percent pure Hollywood fiction.

Rev. Oka says one of the images in the film not in line with scripture was Christ's flesh being ripped off, clinging to the whip, as he was lashed.