Composition of a Good Film: Moral Excellence

Not many people like Hollywood. Conservative Christians don’t like Hollywood. Liberal Christians don’t like Hollywood. Film critics and theorists don’t like Hollywood. Film scholars don’t like Hollywood. Independent film-makers don’t like Hollywood. Film-makers from other countries and cultures don’t like Hollywood. I don’t like Hollywood. (Did I just make a bunch of generalizing statements? Yes).

Hollywood is one big, fat movie-making corporation. They are able to knockout movies faster than you can blink an eye because they recycle stories, characters, and production processes for greater profits. For this reason, the films they produce are generally not thought out nor thought-provoking. Hollywood movies are far removed from moral excellence. (I am just full of generalizing statements today).

I should probably stop now, before somebody gets the impression that I don’t watch or even enjoy Hollywood movies.

I am a girl. I like a good romantic comedy – applying the term “good” very loosely. Boy meets girl, boy falls for girl and girl falls for boy, some circumstance threatens to rip them apart, boy and girl get together anyway.  My favorite romantic comedies are probably Katherine Heigl movies – yeah, she gets her own subcategory. Bad boy meets uptight good girl, both seem to hate each other at first, both realize they are in love with each other (usually in a dancing scene of some sort), a circumstance threatens to rip them apart, they end up together (usually after yelling about all the things they hate about each other).

I don’t know why I like this particular plotline so much. I guess it resonates with my personal history. (Not that my personal history has turned out the way a Katherine Heigl movie does, nor do I want it to, but I digress). I really kind of hate that the good (but uptight) girl must be loosened up by a bad boy. Along the way, she reforms him from a commitment-phobe to a semi-nice guy.  It’s a really bad model of relationships.  (A really, really bad model of relationships). Not to go all Dr. Lydia on everyone but a good relationship is not about reforming the other person, but in helping the other person become who God wants them to be (and that doesn’t just apply to romantic relationships).

Just so you know, this whole deal about movies – I’m not exactly trying to tell you what you should or shouldn’t watch. That is most definitely between you and God. I’m just saying that we need to be critical consumers of movies: that is, we think about and analyze what we are consuming. What do these movies say about society? Cultural issues? How do these movies affect the way I see things, if at all?

Most importantly, and to be continued…

What do movies say about God?


Lydia holds a Bachelor of Arts in Radio, Television, and Film. She is passionate about reaching artists for Jesus Christ!


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