Video Resources

Banned from the Bible (2003, History Channel, 100 min.)

How often do you find documentaries dedicated to New and Old Testament Apocrypha? Sure, it is a little slim on expert commentary (Marvin Meyer is one of the talking heads, but come on, where’s Francois Bovon and Stanley Jones?) but it provides plenty of discussion of canon formation and eight key texts: the Life of Adam and Eve, Jubilees, 1 Enoch, Infancy Gospel of Thomas, Infancy Gospel of James, the Gospel of Mary, the Gospel of Nicodemus, and the Apocalypse of Peter.

Stigmata (1999, 103 min.)

The Gospel of Thomas is portrayed here as a text suppressed by the Catholic Church in a scheme to deny believers individual paths to salvation.

X-Files, “Hollywood AD” (2000)

This satirical episode features a plot to forge an ancient Gospel of Mary. You can read selections from the script at

X-Files, “Revelations” (1996)

This episode includes references to the Apocalypse of Peter. For a discussion of the episode see

The Gnostics (Border Television, 1987)

The Gnostics is a four-part documentary that mixes remarks from scholars (e.g., Elaine Pagels, Gilles Quispel) with dramatic re-enactments (see Irenaeus debate a Gnostic Christian! listen as an afroed guy in a white robe recites logia from the Gospel of Thomas!) and location shots (watch Gilles Quispel stumble over rocks in his search for the place where the Nag Hammadi Library was discovered!). Each episode covers a different element of Gnosticism: 1. Knowledge of the Heart (ancient Christian Gnosticism), 2. The Godmen’s Heresy (Cathars and Bogomils), 3. The Divinity of Man (the Corpus Hermeticum), 4. A Crack in the Universe (modern Gnosticism, including Carl Jung and contemporary Gnostic churches).

Gnostic Themes in Hollywood Films

Need a film clip to illustrate Gnostic concepts? Consult the list and reviews at