Sunday, June 10, 2007

Christians at the Movies

I love movies but I have a problem--I also like to recommend them to other people, and that’s where things get weird.

You see, some of the movies I like include what many of my friends would call "objectionable content." To me, objectionable content includes bad acting, idiotic storytelling, poor directing or lame writing, but usually to my friends it means that the movie includes: (1) sex or nudity (it doesn’t even matter if the sex is between married couples, it’s sex so it’s objectionable), (2) bad language, (3) violence, or (4) depictions of drug or alcohol use.

Their evaluations of the movie tend to go like this: “You should see it, it’s great! There’s no sex or violence or bad language or anything!”

I’m always tempted to point out to them that a blank movie screen also includes none of those things and that I wouldn’t pay eight bucks to sit and watch that for two hours, but I usually hold my tongue. That, or I feel like encouraging them to avoid reading the Old Testament where erotic poetry, brutal violence, blasphemy, prostitution, and scenes of drunken orgy populate the pages. Typically I just say, “Oh, well. It sounds like you really enjoyed it.”

I think that if the content of the Old Testament wasn’t in the Bible, but was published as a novel instead, Christian bookstores wouldn’t carry it because of all the "objectionable content."

Tomorrow I’ll share the three factors I think discerning people should use when evaluating media. Stay tuned 'till then.

Meanwhile, check out some of Ransom Fellowship's thoughtful, insightful and balanced movie reviews at
I'll bet you leave impressed and filled with great ideas for your Netflix list.


Anonymous said...

At first I thought it was funny that you were going to write about Christians at the movies, but in the end, You did a really good job on explaining it. I love you dad! -Cloggirl

Guybrush Threepwood said...

That was very well-put. At times I think Christians tend to want to be "too comfortable", they try to isolate themselves from the things which could very well make them into better people. Of course, there is a line that movies should never cross, which is now crossed way too often, but the best way to capture emotion, in any kind of media project, is to include every single emotion. A verse of Ecclesiastes comes to mind (I don't remember the exact chapter and verse) but it says "A time for war, a time for peace" and all other kinds of feelings and contrasts. When I write books, scripts or even story lines for games, I try to include every emotion and it's most obvious opposite (sometimes even a less obvious opposite). People can relate to those things so much better, such as the human longing for peace. That is probably one of the biggest feelings you can use, because it is just so sought after in this world.

Great article!