“In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world” (Luke 2:1).
When a movie is made of a Biblical story, it is subject to the interpretation of the director and screenwriters. When it is made of a story with little dialogue, the interpretation is even more prominent. Such is the case with the movie, The Nativity Story starring Keisha Castle-Hughes and Oscar Isaac.
It is such a familiar story that many look for the traditional items we sing about and see in various forums. As such, there are going to be differences of opinion concerning the facts of the story itself.
First, this movie is a good movie about one of the most famous events in history. We see each of the characters in light of what we know about the story. It primarily centers around Joseph and Mary and their life together before the birth of Jesus. Since Joseph doesn’t speak in scripture, this is difficult to know, but we do see Joseph acting, and that is important. We are told that Joseph was a righteous man and a God fearer. Read the texts before you see the movie; it will help set the context (1).
The movie brings to life the setting of the Jewish world at the birth of Jesus. From what I understand, the screen writer and director consulted both Jewish and Christian scholars to present a culturally accurate portrayal. For instance, the houses of Nazareth and Bethlehem were small. One scene shows Mary’s family sleeping in one room, adults and children together. The doorways were low and the houses made of stone. Animals were around, some even inside.
Article Source: http://www.gracecentered.com/The_Nativity_Story.htm