Archive for December, 2007
You may remember this song — LET’S GO TO THE MOVIES. It comes from the movie ANNIE. It’s such an upbeat song that you want to just pack up the family and head out for an evening at the movies. For years, the movies have been a great place to take a date, entertain the family and even drop off the kids while mom and dad are busy doing other things.
I’m sure it’s not news to anyone that things have changed. These days, before we take the family to see a movie we have tp analyze it to see if it’s appropriate. This change has been gradual but very noticeable. GONE WITH THE WIND comes to mind. It is a great movie, but it was the first to dare to use the "d’" word. Since then, movies have used shocking language just for that — the shock value. No longer is it enough to use the "d" word. New movies have to push the limits and as I’ve heard many actors say, take people out of their comfort zone.
Because of the corruption of movies, we have come to rely on a rating system. We as parents have some idea of the level of corruption a particular movie has. While a noble idea, this rating system has been created by worldly people. It catches the big no-no’s such as violence, sex and drugs, but what about other things that a Christian should stay away from. What about blasphemy, sacrilege, disrespect for parents and using God’s name in vain?
The first movie that pops in to my head is THE GOLDEN COMPASS. It is rated PG-13, so many parents will feel comfortable letting their children see it. According to the rating system, it it appropriate for children over 13. There has been much written on this movie warning parents not to take their child to see it. So what’s the problem? Blasphemy. This movie is written with blatant blasphemy as its basis. The world doesn’t see blasphemy as a serious issue.
Another movie that comes to mind is EVAN ALMIGHTY . This one gets a PG rating by the world’s standards. This sacrilegious movie puts a new slant on the story of Noah by poking fun of it. This story that shows us the power of God and His love for man, for obedient man, has been reduced to a comedy. What’s the harm? It’s all done in fun. We all know the difference in a movie and the Bible. Do we? This movie has been brought up by 2 different students in 2 different class session while we were reviewing the story of Noah. This sacrilegious movie is what pops up in the minds of these children when we are discussing the story of God’s destruction of evil in the world.
The movies mentioned above are just a smattering of what Hollywood has offered us lately. Movies are powerful. They are larger than life and louder than life. When you sit in a theater to watch a movie you are totally surrounded by the images and the sounds. They are so commanding that you can’t think of anything else. What you see is unforgettable. When a child or a person with a weak faith sees these powerful images, their whole idea of who and what God is can be altered.
These movies (and many like them) chip away at our faith. A little chip here and a little chip there doesn’t seem to make much of an impact at the time. Multiply those chips by all the other things in life that try to hinder our faith and eventually there is great damage done. THE GOLDEN COMPASS presents God as weak and fallible. Our souls are portrayed as something that lives separate from us. Everything the Bible teaches is twisted and distorted. It’s done in such a dramatic and enthralling way, that anyone (especially impressionable children) can’t help but walk away with images and thoughts that tear down our belief in God.
After watching movies such as these, there will be a permanent link between what Hollywood wants us to think of the Bible and God and what God wants us to think. It takes a strong, mature person to break this link. The fact that my students brought up Evan Almighty during Bible class demonstrates that this is true. We need to protect ourselves and our children from blasphemous and sacrilegious entertainment.
In the words of the Statler Brothers:
Everbody knows when you go to the show
You can't take the kids a-long
You've gotta read the paper and know the code
of G, PG and R and X
You gotta know what the movie's about
Be-fore you even go
Tex Ritter's gone and Disney's dead
The screen is filled with sex.