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Pro-life (i.e. life issue) movies for youth?


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Email request from a reader:

Our local Pro-Life Youth Group is sponsoring a Pro-Life Camp for Youth. At the Camp, they planned to show the movie, The Island (2005). We sent them your review of the movie (and the USCCB review), and told them that the movie was not suited for youth (it is rated for Adults)!

The Pro-Life Youth leader is considering other films that might facilitate the same type of discussion, but with fewer mature scenes. If you have ideas of bioethics and pro-life theme movies, please let me know. The Camp begins 7/27. Thank you!

Yeah, I agree that The Island wasn't the best call. Any suggestions?

“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” — Flannery O'Connor

Writing at the new Decent Films | Follow me on Twitter and Facebook

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Email request from a reader:

Our local Pro-Life Youth Group is sponsoring a Pro-Life Camp for Youth. At the Camp, they planned to show the movie, The Island (2005). We sent them your review of the movie (and the USCCB review), and told them that the movie was not suited for youth (it is rated for Adults)!

The Pro-Life Youth leader is considering other films that might facilitate the same type of discussion, but with fewer mature scenes. If you have ideas of bioethics and pro-life theme movies, please let me know. The Camp begins 7/27. Thank you!

Yeah, I agree that The Island wasn't the best call. Any suggestions?

Gattaca?

In case you were wondering, my name is spelled "Denes House," but it's pronounced "Throatwobbler Mangrove."
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Gattaca?

Yeah, first film I thought of too. Might be a little slow for youth. Also, good call re. genetic engineering, certainly a life issue, but requiring discernment re. suicide and fornication. Oh, and the scattered profanity and obscenity might raise some hackles.

Anything else?

“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” — Flannery O'Connor

Writing at the new Decent Films | Follow me on Twitter and Facebook

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I just rewatched Minority Report this past week, and had some similar feelings about bio-ethical issues, especially where the Pre-Cogs were concerned. The line that resonates for me came from Wally the caretaker, when descibing how the Pre-Cogs are used... "It's best not to think of them as human." There's a spiritual and mechanical aspect to the Pre-Cogs... are they to be deified for there talents, or do their talents only make them tools rather than people?

This film may be too intense for younger viewers. I for one am of the opinion that if this film had been directed by anyone other than Steven Spielberg, it would have gotten an R rating rather than PG-13. But I think his name adds a lot of weight when it comes to getting some things in under the wire, as far as the ratings boards are concerned.

Edited by Baal_T'shuvah

Formerly Baal_T'shuvah

"Everyone has the right to make an ass out of themselves. You just can't let the world judge you too much." - Maude 
Harold and Maude
 

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Well I happen to LIKE _The Island_, provided that the kids who watch it are up to the Michael Bay-isms in that film.

But that said, am I the only one here that a movie about abortion should not be sugar-coated, and merely acceptable to PG-oriented families? What I fear is that a subject like this, by definition, would not be shown for what it truly is.

Further, I do not expect Hollywood to get a truly pro-life perspective. (The best they can muster is _Terminator II_, where the cyborg merely aims for kneecaps).

I would think long and hard for a person showing a film that works overtime to show both sides of the issue, so as to foster discussion. The only film I know of that really does this, is that documentary that David Poland has raved about consistently... a film that will make both sides squirm. Of course, there was also that doc made a few weeks ago, that was truly from a pro-life insider perspective... sadly, both titles are drawing a blank.

In terms of movies, the only film I can possibly consider in this category (and I've not seen it, so I don't know), is Todd Holondz' _Palindromes_. That, and maybe _Vera Drake_. I'd even add _Citizen Ruth_ to the mix, (again unseen by me) but I fear that film (along with Palindromes) paints a picture of pro-life gun-wielders.

And _Children of Men_ will definitely be too violent (and not the right type of violence), but that was my fave film last year, undeniably pro-life.

Nick Alexander

Keynote, Worship Leader, Comedian, Parodyist

Host of the Prayer Meeting Podcast - your virtual worship oasis. (Subscribe)

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Baal_T'shuvah wrote:

: I for one am of the opinion that if this film had been directed by anyone other than Stephen Spielberg, it would have gotten an R rating rather than PG-13. But I think his name adds a lot of weight when it comes to getting some things in under the wire, as far as the ratings boards are concerned.

Oh, absolutely. A few months ago, Shia LaBeouf confirmed a rumour to the effect that Transformers was originally rated R until Spielberg, the film's producer, nagged them into re-rating it PG-13.

Speaking of films starring Samantha Morton, Code 46 has an interesting take on what sorts of laws and social standards might exist in the future, once it becomes possible for genetically identical embryos to be "hatched" years or decades apart. What if that woman you meet at the bar is genetically identical to your mother or grandmother? What sorts of laws might we pass to avoid the sort of genetically incestuous relationships and/or offspring that might result from those encounters? That sort of thing. But it's an R-rated film, so probably not fit for youth groups.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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I've never seen it, but I heard Soylent Green is a possible movie that raises some pro-life concerns. Also there is, Million Dollar Baby.

Brandon

"God is so great and merciful that he does not require that we name him precisely. God is even willing to be anonymous for a time. Remember how God led the Three Wise Men from the East to Christ? The Wise Men did not know the God of Israel or Jesus. They worshipped the stars. So God used a star to lure them."--The Twelve Steps for Christians

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I'm not sure exactly what their purpose is but how about:

Entertaining Angels - the Dorothy Day story?

or

Home Beyond the Sun. This is a little campy and the acting is uneven which could be a problem.

or

Hidden Secrets. This is actually a Christian film based on the "Big Chill" kind of genre.

Denny

Since 1995 we have authored a commentary on film, cinema in focus. Though we enjoy cinema as an art form, our interests lie not so much in reviewing a film as in beginning a conversation about the social and spiritual values presented. We, therefore, often rate a film higher or lower due to its message rather than its quality of acting or film-making.

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I watched Tsotsi last night, but it's probably too violent, right? I'm not thinking of the child in the film, but of the handicapped beggar.

What other movies deal with dignity for the disabled, or those whose lives might be considered "worthless" by others? Just Like Heaven?

Hey, how 'bout My Flesh and Blood, which I've heavily touted here, to little avail?

I'd recommend Murderball for older audiences, but it's obviously not appropriate for kids.

Edited by Christian

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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oo! oo! oo!

If we want to go with the theme that every child is precious in the eyes of God, no matter how desperate the surroundings, then one cannot do better than _Born into Brothels_. The film doesn't show anything objectionable, but the youth leader may want to keep the central vocation of the kids' mommies in mind...

Nick Alexander

Keynote, Worship Leader, Comedian, Parodyist

Host of the Prayer Meeting Podcast - your virtual worship oasis. (Subscribe)

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