Ewan McGregor enjoys a moment of levity between takes on the set of “Last Days in the Desert.”

What makes a movie Christian?

The answer to that question has taken myriad forms in 2016, a year that has encompassed the Coen brothers’ extravagant parody of 1950s Hollywood Bible kitsch (and sincere portrayal of discernment) in “Hail, Caesar!,” the modern-day dramas “God’s Not Dead 2” and “Miracles From Heaven,” and the period pieces “Risen” and the “Young Messiah.” When a lavish, state-of-the-art remake of “Ben-Hur” opens this summer, we will have come full circle to precisely the brand of lurid swords — and — sandals epic the Coens skewered so affectionately just six months earlier.

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