Critics at the time panned this movie as "I was a Teenage Jesus", etc., which was extremely unfair.
I am not a particularly religious person, but I found this story of Christ's life extremely moving and sincere. Even if you do not believe in him as God, he comes across as a noble and charismatic figure worthy of admiration. The plot retells the biblical story more as less traditionally: this is what you expect to see. The musical score by Rosza is, as usual, excellent.
When I used to run a cinema club, I put on special showings of this movie for religious groups. They were totally overwhelmed, many leaving in tears after the final scenes of crucifixion nad resurrection. Though the crucifixion scenes are deeply affecting, the gratuitous and disgusting violence of "The Passion of the Christ" has thankfully been avoided.
Having projected this film many times over, I found it a profoundly disturbing experience; it does make you wonder about your beliefs or lack of them.