1. James Caviezel in The Passion of the Christ
Although he was backed up with an incredible director and script, this could have gone so wrong. But Caviezel gives a restrained performance that is nevertheless powerful and unforgettable. The actor disappears, and all that remains is the image of whom he represents. Incredible.
2. Jeffrey Hunter in King of Kings
Hunter was able to accomplish the tricky feat of both portraying Christ as God and man. He is elevated, but we understand Him. He is God, but approachable.
3. Max von Sydow in The Greatest Story Ever Told
Unlike, Hunter, von Sydow slightly missed the mark and is a bit too removed. But he completely captured the gentle, but also power, strength of Our Lord.
4. Christian Bale in Mary, Mother of Jesus
In a film that is sadly riddled with blatant inaccuracies, Bale gives a masculine performance that is studied and solid. I hope one day, with a different project, he can get another chance at playing Jesus.
5. Robert Powell in Jesus of Nazareth
Probably the best, over all, film ever made about Christ. However, Powell’s performance is distant and icy. Jesus remains somewhat aloof. Regardless, he does give us a glimpse of Jesus’ calm assuredness.