The movie really isn't all that big out here.. the ticket guy said that they moved the movie from its largest screen because of poor ticket sales on wednesday.. this isn't surprising since only 5% of the people in Washington go to church occasional.. so why would they pay money to hear about Jesus--in our screening there were about 100 people in the theater with about half from my church and campus. One guy that believes in Jesus but doesn't consider himself a christian showed up in protest by not seeing movie he thought it was wrong to make a story that's about love into a movie about hate.. I think its wrong to charge $9 to see a movie.. the fact of the matter is that the Jews really did hate Jesus--they did say let his blood be on us and our children.
I only heard of two people that left during the movie because of the violence... a lady sitting next to me didn't make it through the flogging scene which was just the beginning of the beatings and a guy sitting behind me was crying so much that his friend told him that he should leave. The movie doesn't hold back when showing the physical, emotional and spiritual suffering of Jesus.. the height for me was the many scenes in which Jesus was struggling to carry a cross.. these give a whole new meaning to take up your cross and carry it daily.
I think that its good for believers to sit through the violent movie.. for many it will renew understanding or for most clarify the messages conveyed by the gospels--by far it does a better job at depicting the actual events than other materials. Nonetheless, I felt like the movie missed the most important point that his dying didn't save us from our sins but rather by his rising... I assume this was left out because it would force the movie to go into issues of baptism. As with most movies i recommend reading the book before seeing the movie :)