One man, playing both Jesus and the Devil? Rodrigo Garcia’s new film Last Days in the Desert at Sundance sounds like it could be a broad comedy.
Instead, it’s a light-on-dialogue character portrait of very human Biblical figures, both portrayed in subtle tones by Ewan McGregor.
Garcia (Albert Nobbs and HBO’s In Treatment) zooms in on Yeshua (as he’s called here) wandering the desert, meditating for 40 days and 40 nights on the nature of his divine mission. He’s looking for a sign — a voice from the sky, a burning bush, anything — from his father. Instead, he receives only suggestions of the Almighty’s fallibility and vanity from his evil companion.
McGregor, playing both roles thanks to camera tricks and the work of his longtime stand-in Nash Edgerton, is differentiated only by the Devil’s smug smile and jewelry.
Check out the newly released scene of Ewan smashing both roles.