Synopsis by Rebecca Flint Marx
The life and times of Paul, one of the co-founders of Christianity, is the subject of this documentary by Israeli-French filmmaker Abraham Segal, who first explored the life of a major biblical figure in his 1996 documentary The Abraham File. Originally known as Saul of Tarsus, Paul was not one of the original 12 apostles, but instead spent his life in an apparently disreputable manner. A witness to the martyrdom of Stephen, the first saint, Paul did not come face to face with Jesus until the Resurrection. Paul wanted to unite everybody under one faith, and his writings and preachings were at odds with Jewish laws; his personal rejection of some of these laws was the source of controversy among Jews even as it garnered hostile interest among others. In his attempt to deduce whether Paul was merely a traitor to his Jewish brethren or a true visionary, Segal interviews people ranging from rabbis to Biblical scholars to a born-again New York taxi driver. He also retraces Paul's steps throughout the Middle East, Europe, and elsewhere, searching for answers but usually finding contradiction instead.