What makes The Last Temptation of Christ one of his great films is not that it is true about Jesus but that it is true about Scorsese. Like countless others, he has found aspects of the Christ story that speak to him. This is the Jesus of his two most autobiographical characters, Charlie in Mean Streets and J.R. in Who’s That Knocking at My Door? Both of those characters were played by Keitel. Interesting that he choose Keitel this time to play Judas. Perhaps Judas is Scorsese’s autobiographical character in The Last Temptation of Christ. Certainly not the Messiah, but the mortal man walking beside him, worrying about him, lecturing him, wanting him to be better, threatening him, confiding in him, prepared to betray him if he must. Christ is the film, and Judas is the director.
So well said.