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Sunday, November 27, 2016

"I Want to See Something That Represents Who I Am"

The television movie commentator said, “People want to see movies that represent who they are.”

Yep! We do.

We want to see clean, wholesome movies that promote:
  • Morality
  • Family values
  • Respect
  • Individuality
  • Positivity

Instead, the movie industry cranks out just the opposite. What’s the problem? I’m not sure. It hasn’t been all that many years ago that basically any movie that came out was okay for family viewing. Box office favorites during my childhood included: The Sound of Music, Mary Poppins, and Swiss Family Robinson.

I don’t need to describe to you the non-values that today’s movies promote. Today’s films are Godless, disrespectful, violent, and full of sexual content. Rarely ever is the language clean. A “family unit” can consist of all kinds of couples, triples, and cheating. Some marital arrangements even include passive tolerance of aberrant behaviors. Movies represent many divorces and immorality from singles, as well. When there are children in films, they have nasty attitudes and talk back to their parents and other adults. If there’s a school scene, there’s more of the same disrespect.

I realize we’re no longer in “Ozzie and Harriet” days, and “Leave it to Beaver” was a very long time ago. When I was a child, I never knew any woman who actually wore high heels and starched aprons around the house. It was an unrealistic, idealistic picture of life, but it was a positive one. When Beaver and Wally got into trouble, they learned life lessons. The moral tone was good. Their parents may have disagreed, but they were committed to each other, and the family unit was secure.

Today, even the remakes of classic films are darker. I recently saw a frame-by-frame comparison of the new Beauty and the Beast movie with the older, animated one. I noticed that the scenes’ coloring is darker—more like dark grays and navy than daylight. (I haven’t seen it, and I can’t judge whether the whole tone is truly more pessimistic. I don’t know. This is only an observation about staging and lighting.)

Why the darkness? Why the gore? Why the disrespect and immorality?

The Bible says. In the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. . . . men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith (1 Timothy 3:1b-7, 8b). It sounds like a snapshot of today’s entertainment—that supposedly reflects who people are and what they want to see.

Not me!

And, I’m sure not many of my readers.

What can be done to change things? (Before offering some ideas, I’m not sure we can change Hollywood, but I do think maybe we can begin to influence culture—and movies—in a positive, alternative way.)

Here are four ideas:
  1. Make sure your own entertainment choices are clean and pure. I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me (Psalm 101:3).
  2. Patronize good, Christian films and watch the old classics. When there’s more of a market, there is more funding and availability of good films. It’s a win-win.
  3. Make your voice heard. For example, you watch a children’s movie with your kids, and you’re horrified to hear potty talk, innuendo, and crudeness. Write a note to the company. If every caring parent did this, there would be a huge difference in kids’ movies.
  4. If you’re talented in writing, acting, etc. make sure you use your talent for the Lord. His reward is greater than any secular acclaim—and it’s eternal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven. . . . But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you (Matthew 6:20a, 33). Choose to only take part in clean, moral productions as well as Christian ones. The Lord will reward you.
Let’s be a voice for positive moral tone in entertainment.

After all, we want it to represent who we are.


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