Tag Archives: The Blind Side

When pastors undermine the relevance of Christianity to the culture

Eric Metaxas has posted another dynamite Breakpoint commentary. (H/T Kelli)

Excerpt:

Here’s a particularly egregious case in point: the recent campaign to remove a great movie, The Blind Side, from the shelves of LifeWay Christian stores. Remember, The Blind Side was denounced as Christian propaganda by many liberal critics. It explicitly depicts an affluent white Christian family devoting itself to helping an impoverished black kid because it’s the Christian thing to do.

The film’s offense, according to a Florida pastor who started the campaign to have LifeWay stores pull the DVD, is that the movie contains “explicit profanity, God’s name in vain, and racial slurs.” It doesn’t seem to matter that the objectionable language is used to depict the palpably unpleasant world from which the young black man, Michael, was rescued by his adoptive family.

What seems to matter to this pastor is that if we “tolerate” the presence of this movie in Christian bookstores, our children and grandchildren will “embrace” this kind of behavior. I’m not making this up – this is the exact reason given by the pastor. And frankly, I think it’s insane. I saw the movie myself. I even let my 12-year-old daughter see it. That’s because it is a great film and I recommend it highly.

But sadly, LifeWay caved in and removed the “offensive” discs from their shelves.

For outsiders looking in, the moral of the story is that “there is no pleasing Christians. They always seem to be looking for something to be mad about.”

We complain about the calumnies and caricatures of Christians on the big screen; and then, when an Academy Award-winning film shows us at our very best, we complain that scenes depicting harsh, inner-city reality are too true to life!

We are, in effect, making our participation contingent on all our possible objections being met beforehand. Since there are many people who would be happy if we stayed within our cultural and religious ghettos, it’s difficult to imagine how we Christians can hope to be taken seriously in cultural discussions and debates with this kind of an approach.

Concerns about the language in the film also miss the larger point: what made the Tuohys — the family depicted in the film — such great Christian exemplars wasn’t their non-use of profanity; it was their willingness to reach out and embrace someone in need.

If we Christians can’t get this, then maybe we really should refrain from commenting on culture in the first place.

The Blind Side is on the very very exclusive Wintery Knight list of great courting movies: (not in order)

  1. Rules of Engagement
  2. Bella
  3. The Lives of Others
  4. United 93
  5. Taken
  6. Cinderella Man
  7. The Blind Side
  8. Cyrano de Bergerac
  9. Amazing Grace
  10. We Were Soldiers
  11. Stand and Deliver
  12. Blackhawk Down
  13. The Pursuit of Happyness
  14. High Noon

These are the movies that you show women to get them to understand what it is that men do in a marriage, so that they can recognize, understand, support and affirm men in their married roles.

If you missed his last Metaxas Breakpoint commentary that I featured, it’s about how pro-abortion people are uncomfortable with the evidence for the humanity of the unborn from things like ultrasounds and sonograms.

Two movies for Christians to see

The first is called “The Blind Side”.

Story here.

Excerpt:

The best Christian film of 2009 is actually a secular film. The Blind Side, starring Sandra Bullock (The Proposal), which depicts the remarkable true story of All-American football star Michael Oher, may go down in history as one of the best Christian stories of our time. However, it is not a “Christian” film, but a universal story about a godly family who lives up to their convictions.

[…]Director John Lee Hancock (The Rookie) understood the story to be one of faith, but delivered it more universally. “It really is two different stories, one of which is more of a question: Who is Michael Oher and why did the stars align to shine so brightly on this kid from the projects in Memphis? And then on the other side, it’s a great story about how this unique family evolved, and the unconventional mother son relationship at its center. The journey that Michael and the Tuohy family go on is the heart of the movie.”

And “To Save a Life”:

Story here.

Excerpt:

The goal of the film is twofold: to bring hope to hurting students and to empower young people to reach out to the hurt and lonely. “If you’re a follower of Christ, you’re called to be an imitator,” Britts says. “You’re never more like Jesus than when you’re reaching out to the hurt and lonely. There’s not a page in the four Gospels where Jesus doesn’t reach out to the hurting, lonely, left out, and lost.”

But Britts says they never set out to make a faith-based film—they set out to create a story any teenager would automatically connect with. “In the film, we don’t make a blanket statement separating Christians from non-Christians. Instead, the bad guy is actually the senior pastor’s son,” Britts says. “There’s definitely hypocrisy in the church. People who’ve seen the film have told us us, ‘You’re not trying to push something on me. You’re telling it in an authentic way.’”

Also interesting is Britts’ intentional decision to communicate that becoming a Christian won’t automatically mean all your problems will be solved. After the main character, Jake, becomes a Christian, his life actually falls apart and he’s left questioning whether the whole God thing is working out. “It asks the question, Are you going to trust God because he’s going to make your life great or because you need him?” Britts says.

Two good movies to watch!.