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Idol Chatter

Movies are tapping into issues of faith more and more–and not just during the holidays–a topic which usatoday.com is exploring in its current article on the topic.
“The Book of Eli,” in theaters now, kept its secret during a very long marketing campaign that was showing trailers as long as last year. They showed Denzel Washington in scenes carrying a sacred book, but the fact that it was the Bible was kept on the down low.
Until now.
Moviemakers are finding that matters of faith and religion may not be embraced as much by the press or cultural banter, but they sure do bring in large audiences and large profits, so we can expect to see more of them in the near future.
And I’m absolutely thrilled!
There is something about a movie that can say so much about matters of faith without really appearing as if its trying to. Movies can tell a story without preaching, When they do that, they are effective. If you agree, there are some great DVD archive choices including oldies like “Heaven Can Wait,” “Defending Your Life” and “Chariots of Fire,” as well more recent choices such as “Angels and Demons,” “Faith LIke Potatoes” and of course “The Passion of the Christ.”
The usatoday.com article goes on to name “The Blind Side” and “The Lovely Bones” as current offerings which also include faith and the afterlife as primary themes, after faith-themed movies from last year (“Knowing” and “Madea Goes to Jail”) both exceeded analysts’ expectations.
Probably like yourself, I usually don’t like being “preached at,” even in church, but I certainly enjoy films which raise the bar on how we think and feel about faith, films which deepen our discussion past “did you like that or not” to “what did you think about what it said?”
I thought “The Book of Eli” had a lot to say, as sort of a “Mad Max” with a Bible. I hope more people pick up a Bible this year after seeing it. I “The Lovely Bones” encourages friends and families to chat about their views on the afterlife, even if one’s perspective is different from the movies.
And I hope Hollywood continue to recognize that movies which tap into matters of faith are interesting in our culture…as long as they’re not too soapy or preachy. I like the trend and hope it continues!

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