Jesus in Armani

by William L. Blizek


1. 5 Minuti is directed by Deborah E. Brown and Sergio Mascheroni and is produced by Cinema Verita. Sergio Mascheroni is also the screen writer. The film stars Barbara Sanua and Maurizio Desinan. Eleven minutes. Color. Italian, with English sub-titles. 5 Minuti is the winner of the 2006 Best Film Award at the 168 Hour Film Project. The 168 Hour Film Project is a faith-based, worldwide incubator in which teams make a short film in seven days (168 hours). All works are based on a particular theme and a particular verse from the Bible. The theme and verses change from year to year. All films from the Project screen at the annual 168 Film Festival. The eleven-minute version of the movie is available on YouTube. There also is a twenty-five minute version of the movie to which I will occasionally refer throughout the essay. That version can be found at You will need to download it to your computer and open it in the appropriate player (Quicktime, Real Player, an iPod, etc. Windows Media Player can not play .mov files). You can also access the twenty-five minute version at (this takes a while to download before it plays smoothly).

2. Ask youself: “How would I describe Jesus, the Son of God, if I could not use the popular robe and sandals image?” It is an interesting question to consider and one that the movie invites us to raise.

3. There is something simple and elegant in this brief exchange that reveals both the suffering and the sacrifice of Jesus in a way that the sixty or so minutes of flogging and blood splatter in Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ do not.

4. A similar passage can be found in Galations 2:16: "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified." But there is some dispute in Christian theology about faith and works, in part due to the passage in James 2:14: "What doth it profit, my breatheren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?" And, see James 2:17: "Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone." (King James Version)

5. Telephone interview with Deborah Brown and Sergio Mascheroni, conducted on Thursday, September 17, 2010.

6. 6 King James Version

7. The lyrics to the entire song follow:

I love you

I love you
And I am impatient to know you
To breathe your breath
And tell you that I love you.
I love you
And I covet the day that I will see you
Face to face
You will be like me

I, I love you as you are
I created you as you are
Beautifully made
And I will transform you
I will remake you perfect
My flame
Will purify you

I love you
And I have desire to see my reflection in you
That your eyes will tell of me, reflect Me
I desire that you sense My heart beating
Within you
For your life, I desire to be united with you.

While aspects of me come down from Me to you
You will fly high to the point of meeting Me
My spirit will speak to you of Me
Of the profound love I have for you

I, I love you as you are
I created you as you are
Beautifully made
And I will transform you
I will remake you perfect
My flame will purify you

“And, I, I love you as you are
I am pleased that you are that way.

8. Telephone interview.

9. King James Version

10. From e-mail correspondence (09/15/10, 04:03 p.m.)

11. E-mail correspondence.

12. I have adjusted some of the quotes from the film so that they are more appropriate to the way in which I have written this essay. The comments from my colleagues, Michele Desmarais, Brady DeSanti,  Guy Matalon, and Paul Williams on earlier drafts of this paper were quite helpful.  Also most helpful in the formulation of the paper  were Deborah Brown and Sergio Mascheroni who extended me the courtesy of an interview.

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