Saturday, October 06, 2007


Well since my back has put me outta commision this weekend, I had a chance to catch up on two of my movies from netflix. (I'm amazed at how fast my back is getting better though. I hope to be moving around like normal tomorrow).

The Guardian>
I'm not even sure what made me put this movie in my netflix queue :)
I do like Ashton Kutcher... When he's not being so goofy, I think he can really act. And of course Kevin Costner is always a gamble on the rolls he chooses, but again, I think he can really act well. This movie was not a great movie, but I have to admit I got sucked into it. It has probably been made a 100 times before as far as glorifying a military branch, the small hero, the older wiser man passing the torch to the younger protege, etc... But, maybe that's why this story is told 100 times, because it makes for a good movie. It's very predictable but even so, I liked this movie. IMDB.

Jesus Camp>
Wow, I'm not really sure what to say about this movie. I just finished watching it so I may need some time to process it. It's a bit of a harsh documentary regarding the "evangelical" church. Most of the time, I think a documentary should be less judgmental and try to let the footage speak for itself. I think the film would have been more powerful had we not seen the 4-5 cut scenes of a liberal talk radio host throwing in his two cents regarding the "evangelicals". I found myself agreeing with some of the things he said, but I also felt like they were cheap-shots. At the same time, there were defintely scenes in the movie that were very disturbing to me. To see how these children are manipulated is a bit scary. Again, at the same time, what one person sees as being manipulated, another sees it as teaching. Isn't all teaching some form of manipulation?
The movie also featured Ted Haggard... in an odd twist of fate, Ted has been through a lot and I'm sure really hurt the evangelical movement. In addition to making a strong point for the people who made this movie.
So I'm left with a lot of confused feelings about this film. On one hand, I agree with a lot of the points the film tried to make. On the other hand, It felt wrong, and underhanded. I'm finding it difficult to explain why, other than to say that maybe it didn't seem fair in the way it portrayed the evangelicals.

A really interesting sidenote... I watched the movie through the credits (it had one of my favorite songs - "spirit in the sky")... one of the last few title shots was for the film company behind this movie.. it was "Loki Films" - Irony doesn't get much better than this... So the name of the production company that criticises the evangelical movement is named after a Norse God that is associated with Lies and personified evil and would "lead the enemies of heaven".
wow. The name jumped at me from a strange reference... I had remembered the character that Matt Damon played the "Angel of Death" - a.k.a. Loki, in the Kevin Smith movie called "dogma". I had to google Loki a couple times to figure out exactly who Loki is/was. I'm not sure how Loki from the Norse mythology got to be considered a "fallen angel" unless that was just coincidence.
Loki on
Loki on wikipedia.
Loki quotes from the movie Dogma.

Ok, I wasn't going to say anything about this because it sounds too conspiracy minded, but there were some other "ironic" things that jumped at me in the movie...
The Evangelical camp they went to was called "Kids on Fire" (On the website it is listed as "Families on Fire") - Is it me, or isn't that kind of a negative image? Um, brings up images of people burning in hell doesn't it?
Then to top it off, the "Jesus camp" itself was held at a campground in "Devils lake" North Dakota!
And lastly - One of the kids featured as being a "warrior for God" and a preacher, was named Levi. I couldn't help but to think of the one other person (except for the Levi in the Bible) that I knew of called Levi... Eliphas Levi. I'll remind you to rearrange the letters in Levi and tell me what that spells... See! I told you it was Conspiracy minded!

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