Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Scarlet and the Black

So one of the things that I decided for Lent was to not watch as much TV.  Since I didn't want to give it up entirely, especially on Sundays when I'm home most of the day, I decided that I would try to set aside some of my normal types of shows and movies and instead watch some things that would maybe help me to learn something.  So I've watched some documentaries (and enjoyed them, because I'm a nerd like that) and I've watched a couple of movies. They just so happened to be oldies, but they're so good!

Can I just say that I can't stand the "Christian movie" genre.  It may be totally unfair, but it makes me want to puke.  Those who know me know several of those movies that I absolutely cannot stand. The morals and the values that they are trying to teach are a good thing to some degree, but the whole thing is completely sappy and most of the acting is awful. And I dislike the implication that some of them have that following God means that in the end it works out just the way they want it to.

I would far rather have something real than some story made up on the premise that there is a message that we want to spread and so we'll make a nifty little story about it.  Life is far to interesting to have to rely on poorly told made up stories.  Find the good ones and tell those.  The good stories have the message without preaching it.  And they don't have to be marketed as "Christian movies". They can just be marketed as really good movies.  For example, The Blindside? Hello! Fantastic movie, fantastic story, fantastic acting. And, oh, yeah, there was a really good message underlying it that lots of people saw because it was really good.

The movie I watched last week was Chariots of Fire. I'm sure you've at least heard the music for it before, even if you didn't know what it was from.  Another fantastic movie, and it was about an Olympic athlete who stood up for his principles, even when it meant he wouldn't compete in the Olympic games that he'd trained for (because the pre-lims were on a Sunday and he wanted to honor the Lord's Day) and another that was trying to beat prejudice. That movie was so good that it won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1983, as well as three other Academy Awards.

Then today I watched The Scarlet and the Black. I don't know exactly how old it was, but it was based on the true story of Monsignor Hugh O'Flaherty who helped to save thousands of people in Rome when the Gestapo was there.  It's older, but again, great acting.  Christopher Plummer and Gregory Peck are the two main actors. Probably the only movie where the wrap up scroll on the screen made me tear up.  Can't tell you why, but it was really good.

Okay, I probably didn't need the "Christian movie" rant, sorry about that. Good movies, though, if you're looking for something different to watch and if you like older stuff.


  1. I'm with you on the Christian movie opinion. I personally would extend it to music also. Some people I'm sure are fortified by it and for that I'm thankful it's in the world. But, for me, it's not authentic. I'm definitely checking out The Scarlet and the Black- two great actors.

  2. I agree! I saw some movie about beting the Giants or something...I can't remember the name of it, came off so hokey! I think really great movies with really great messages don't have to be forced.

  3. I just wrote about that too. I'm with you. :)

  4. Have a recommendation for you ~ The Agony and the Ectasy ~ it is about the painting of the Sistine Chapel starring Charlton Heston and Rex Harrison!!

    1. I've got a reccomendation, too - Bella staring Eduardo Verastegui, it is one of the best movies I've seen...and there is also another short film called The Butterfly Circus - both movies won a lot of prizes