Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Positive Depictions

We often read of Hollywood's distaste for traditional religion and are irritated by the stereotypes they often present of people of faith. Yet there are occasionally films made - though not always by "Hollywood" - which present Christians in a realistic and favorable fashion, sometimes explicitly and sometimes in a more understated way.

I've tried to think of some examples that I've seen over the years and the following list is what I've come up with. I've limited the list to non-fantasy and thus have not included the Narnia films (e.g. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, Prince Caspian), and I've not included films based on the Biblical narrative such as The Passion of the Christ, Jesus of Nazareth, etc.

Here's my list:

  • The Mission
  • Saints and Soldiers
  • The Scarlet and the Black
  • Chariots of Fire
  • Amazing Grace
  • Romero
  • The Big Kahuna*
  • Luther
  • End of the Spear
  • The Apostle
  • Facing the Giants

My friend Byron suggests some further possibilities:

  • Babette's Feast
  • The Hiding Place
  • Joni
  • Long Walk Home
  • Remember the Titans
  • To End All Wars*
  • Matewan
  • Entertaining Angels

* indicates an R-rating

I'm sure that there are many other films that we've overlooked so recommendations from readers would be welcome. You can send them along via our Feedback function.


Chauncy Obama

Charles Krauthammer, Jack Kelly, and Michelle Malkin tell us clearly, if tacitly, why we should see Barack Obama as an empty suit. As the campaign wears on there's a nervous apprehension beginning to take shape around the quality of Obama's education. Despite a degree from Harvard, he seems to possess a very uncertain grasp of both American history and American geography. Perhaps this judgment is unfair, but of this much we can be certain: If George W. Bush said just half the things Barack Obama has said, the hoots of derision would reverberate through the media echo chamber for years.

As Michelle reminds us in her piece, we still today hear about Dan Quayle misspelling of potato and George H. W. Bush's unfamiliarity with a supermarket scanner, but there's a good chance you haven't heard in the traditional media any of Obama's doozies reported by Krauthammer, et al.

Read their columns and contemplate that this man might well, in a few months, be the leader of the free world.

Here's a parting irony: George Bush often sounds a little dim when he speaks, especially extemporaneously, but he's known to be reasonably bright. Barack Obama sounds like Demosthenes when he speaks, but is rapidly coming to be seen as an intellectual poseur.

If you haven't already, you really should put Peter Sellers' Being There at the top of your Netflix queue. Senator Obama is Chauncy Gardner come to life.