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His Master's Voice
|Copyright © 2008 - All rights retained by author
|Written by: C. W. Booth
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
An Hour of Peace (or was it ambition?)
Over the past few months I have been studying such topics as salvation (according to Scripture contrasted against the "gospel" according to the Jehovah’s Witnesses), biblical hermeneutics, and Joseph’s decades-long dispute with his brothers. All that study has been a blessing. Then, yesterday, after studying, I went shopping with my wife, did yard work, and completed some car maintenance. In the evening, as the sun was setting, my son was at his computer and my wife was watching some singing competition on television, so I grabbed a soft drink, a jar of nuts, and sat in my back yard. For an hour. Watching the green grass grow and thanking God for such a peaceful hour.
I suppose this relaxed hour of peace implicates me as lacking a certain degree of ambition. Yet, is ambition really all that society cracks-it-up-to-be?
and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you, (1 Thessalonians 4:11)
Therefore we also have as our ambition, whether at home [alive] or absent [dead], to be pleasing to Him. (2 Corinthians 5:9)
P.S. At some time in the future I will be sharing more of what I have been learning through my studies in the past few months. But for now, well, there goes another blade of grass, and see that lily, I think it’s ready to begin blooming…
Thursday, May 29, 2008
One Christian’s Movie Review: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
If you felt as I did, then you classed the original Indiana Jones movie (remember the Ark of the Covenant?) as an excellent film; a good balance between humor and suspense with a fun plot. The second movie (The Temple of Doom) was simply terrible: dark, disgusting, and the plot was virtually nonexistent, or perhaps meaningless might be more accurate. Returning to its roots, the Indy series came back with a surprisingly strong film with The Last Crusade; the interplay between Indy and his father (played by Connery) was outstanding as they searched for the cup of Christ, explored the life events that made their personalities what they were, reopened their father-son relationship, and all while dodging Nazi soldiers.
A new fourth film in the series is The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The theme of this movie is somewhat obscure, but it eventually reveals itself to be: even though we are aging, we are still vital, and we should have seen what was truly important while in our youth and clung to that way back then, and maybe we still can. Not everything in the plot supports this theme.
Certainly there are wild action scenes and witty dialogue. Scattered throughout the film are lines and visuals from other movies (homages) which will make the viewer laugh. For all those things the movie is a fairly good and somewhat fun 2 hours. There are even "surprise" character revelations that deserve a chuckle.
Just as certainly, the writers and directors decided this episode should be done in comic book style. Far more of the action is way over the top silly (extreme violations of physical laws, like gravity) than in previous episodes. This disdain for anything close to reality begins shortly after the film begins to roll, epitomized early on with an atomic explosion. Oh, the blast was cool, but what happened during the blast, though meant as humor, gave one the understanding that nothing in this film was to be taken as dramatic or suspenseful, for this was a 1960’s comic book story unfolding, and nothing deeper than that.
Anyone who has been an avid fan of the little known science fiction television series called Stargate SG-1 is sure to see this Indy film as "reminiscent" of their own prior crystal skull episode. Familiar points include: a crystal skull (duh!), odd things happen by looking at the eye sockets, inter-dimensional aliens, the need to return the skull to its temple, old kooky man affected by the skull, etc. Perhaps a bit too familiar…hmmm…
Forget about Indy as an archeologist. This is a science fiction / action film done in comic book style. While reasonably amusing as an entrant into this genre, it feels like a significant departure from the Indiana Jones series. Forget suspense or drama, it isn’t there. And don’t look for any deeper meaning than the loosely supported theme allows. Nonetheless, the movie is what it is, a fun to watch live action comic book.
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