It’s ironic that producer Mark Burnett — the man who makes reality competitions designed to bring out the worst in people — would make his most ambitious work to date about the good book.
Along with wife, actress Roma Downey (“Touched by an Angel”), Burnett (“Survivor,” “Celebrity Apprentice”) is the creator and executive producer of “The Bible” (8 p.m. Sunday, History), a scripted 10-part miniseries that touches on the higher points of the Old Testament and the ministry of Jesus Christ.
Burnett and Downey bless “The Bible” with grand special effects and a script that mines the humanity in the divine heroes that are larger than life (almost literally with Samson and Goliath). Ingenious casting brings people of color into major roles.
Sunday's two-hour opener spotlights Noah, Moses, Abraham and Joshua. Each scenario is told through the eyes of individuals, often poor and downtrodden types, who answer to a higher calling, making them feel unworthy or incapable of handling the tasks ahead.
With this as the case, “The Bible” isn’t a sweeping story. It’s a simple one and truly inspiring. This is the type of respectful and feel-good television that is in short supply these days.
Minor flaws abound, with actors speaking in British accents (Noah was from Scotland). The odd accents are distracting.
“The Bible” is a heavenly delight, and even such faults are forgivable.
Score: 4 stars (out of five)
Terry Morrow may be reached at 865-342-6445 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2013, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
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