Friday, July 23, 2010

A New Book

I've been doing some reading while I recuperate and just started a new called Meaning at the Movies, becoming a Discerning Reader.  It's kind of an interactive book.  The author, Grant Horner, writes about a number of movies and recommends that you watch them first.  He has tried to avoid spoilers, but you will get more out of the book if you watch the movies first.  We added the movies that he writes about to our Netflix cue.

This is not a book that just the do's and don'ts of watching movies for Christians.  Neither is it a list of acceptable movies for Christians.  The author's goal is to provide a biblical perspective on how Christians should interpret what is seen and heard in the movies.  Here's an excerpt from the book where that author explains his intentions:

The purpose of this book is to help us think through these kinds of questions in regard to movies.  Why do we think the way we do about the world?  Is filmmaking an art, in the classical sense?  Is it philosophy is some technological advanced form?  How influential are movies, really?  Can they have a bad effect on us?  Can they promote virtue in any way?  How do we think in a biblical and theologically rich way about film in general and movies in particular?  And why is film so incredibly powerful? 

As a Christian myself I have gone from watching anything I wanted to see, giving little regard to the content, to totally avoiding R rated movies.  It is a tricky balance to be in the world but not of the world.  We must make ourselves available to reach out to an converse with the lost world around us.  Christians surely should not watch every movie that is made, but avoiding movies altogether would be just as bad.  Movies are social events, where we can converse about the movie with other individuals and express our opinions of the film.  Movies also give us a way to engage culture.  They are a way to see the world through the eyes of people who do not share your beliefs.

Here's the web page where I first heard about the book:  Justin Taylor

For more fun reading, head over to  Home Sanctuary.


  1. Good "thinker" post! I've run the gamut with movies myself...can't bring myself to go to ones I know will be offensive, but I do love a good story up on the screen! I do wish there were more films that didn't rely on sex and violence...I keep thinking surely, there are enough good writers in hollywood to come up with something better.

    Take Toy Story 3 for example. I thought it was the Perfect Movie. Great story, great characters, wonderful theme, humor, action....I know it was a "kids" movie but the appeal is universal. I loved it. It even had romance so it had it all :)

  2. All the Toy Story movies have a good theme. My ds26 just took his brother (15) to see it along with some of their friends. They all said it was very good.