Friday, April 10, 2009

A Disturbing Film Development

For many years, I have heard Christians lament the lack of "Christian" films available for their entertainment. While I understand the complaint that most of the films playing at the multiplex in a given week reflect secularist values, it is foolish to ignore the many excellent films of serious spiritual clout, many of which can be found on this invaluable list. Regardless, it seems that their cries have been answered, as several recent films from Christian filmmakers have enjoyed enormous commercial success relative to budget, notably: Facing the Giants, rumored to be terrible, and Fireproof, made by the same studio, rumored to be slightly better.

And now we have C Me Dance, in which a young girl suffering from leukemia is bestowed with "the ability to convert people to Christianity with a touch or even a look." A satire of the concept of free will? A satire of predestination? No, Christian media doesn't do satire. I gather from reviews that the filmmaker presents this ability as a good gift from God, without a trace of irony. Forced conversion, miraculous or not, is an affront to human dignity and a complete deviation from the instances of conversion presented in the New Testament. The good is good only when it is freely chosen, and only when it is chosen because it is good. I believe that such a film is far more insidious than the teen sex comedies and violent action films that Christians like to protest. Note the calm response of the increasingly ridiculous Plugged In Online. Whereas a film with a dozen f-words receives their scorn, this bastardization of Christianity gets only tepid criticism. It would be all too easy to continue to rant about the film; instead I pray that no viewer takes it to present the gospel.

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