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Top 25: Choosing the second list's theme


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M. Leary wrote:

: Also: Cinema isn't about Christianity. Cinema is about durations of time and space. This is why this whole Pilgrimage theme has been intriguing to me from its first mention.

Ah, well put. I like.

Persiflage wrote:

: But haven't we crossed a line somewhere if our list just becomes a generalized "these are the best religious pilgrimage movies" . . .

Well, yes, I would say we have, but the line we've crossed is a thematic one, not a religious one.

To put this another way: I don't believe that we are looking for movies about RELIGIOUS pilgrimages. Rather, we are looking for movies about journeys that can function, either literally or allegorically, as pilgrimages. And if, say, a secular drama like The Straight Story can function as an allegory for pilgrimage, then I see no reason why a movie about a Buddhist pilgrimage couldn't also function, in some way, as an allegory for pilgrimage that we as Christians might find useful or even applicable to our own lives.

: So when you say you're open to, or "ESPECIALLY" open, does that mean open to appreciating a good Jewish pilgrimage story, or open to putting down your name as recommending it to everyone?

Well, both. I mean, Christianity's relationship to Judaism is very, VERY different from its relationship to any other religion, inasmuch as Christianity began as a Jewish sect. I imagine many Jewish pilgrimage stories -- to the Holy Land, for example -- could be immediately applicable to Christian audience members without any need for allegorization or translation whatsoever, just as whenever Jews quote the Hebrew Bible, we Christians don't have to ask how it compares to divine scripture: we already recognize it as divine scripture OURSELVES. (Obviously there may be differences in interpretive context: the Jewish Bible is smaller than the Old Testament followed by non-Protestant Christians, and Jews tend to interpret it through the traditions embodied by the Talmud etc., rather than the New Testament. But you get the basic idea.)

: Not demanding that all the films we recommend can be called "Christian", but still demanding that no film we recommend essentially concludes that Christianity isn't true.

The trick here is that it's usually difficult to say that a "film" is "concluding" anything. If every person contains multitudes, how much more so a film, which is made by many people and typically depicts the experiences and perspectives of multiple characters. Are films like Monty Python's Life of Brian or The Last Temptation of Christ blasphemous? Depends who you talk to, and what they focus on, etc., etc. I would be reluctant to rule certain films out of order before we had even voted on them; I would prefer to think that the voting process ITSELF would reflect the disposition of the broader A&F community as a whole in these matters.

"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 would be reluctant to rule certain films out of order before we had even voted on them; I would prefer to think that the voting process ITSELF would reflect the disposition of the broader A&F community as a whole in these matters.

Based on the top horror list we came up with, that seems a safe assumption. If we trust the nomination/discussion/voting process, I'm confident our list will be an accurate reflection of this community.

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This is why this whole Pilgrimage theme has been intriguing to me from its first mention.

I'm very excited about it as well. biggrin.gif

That's just how eye roll.

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Are we still brainstorming? Top 25 Film Movements in History and How they Impacted the Faith.

or maybe why they impact the faith. Something like that.

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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To put this another way: I don't believe that we are looking for movies about RELIGIOUS pilgrimages. Rather, we are looking for movies about journeys that can function, either literally or allegorically, as pilgrimages ...

The trick here is that it's usually difficult to say that a "film" is "concluding" anything. If every person contains multitudes, how much more so a film, which is made by many people and typically depicts the experiences and perspectives of multiple characters. Are films like Monty Python's Life of Brian or The Last Temptation of Christ blasphemous? Depends who you talk to, and what they focus on, etc., etc. I would be reluctant to rule certain films out of order before we had even voted on them; I would prefer to think that the voting process ITSELF would reflect the disposition of the broader A&F community as a whole in these matters.

Alright, well I think I do still like the pilgrimage theme.

Frederick Buechner, The Alphabet of Grace, pg. 75 -

Religion as a word points essentially, I think, to that area of human experience where in one way or another man happens upon mystery as a summons to pilgrimage, a come-all-ye; where he is led to suspect the reality of splendors that he cannot name; where he senses meanings no less overwhelming because they can only be hinted at in myths and rituals; where in great laughter perhaps and certain silences he glimpses a destination that he can never know fully until he reaches it.
Edited by Persiflage
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Is it Pilgrimage? Where are we at with this? Have I missed something?

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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Is it Pilgrimage? Where are we at with this? Have I missed something?

Yeah, I think you've missed quite a bit.

I think I missed it, too. The link doesn't work for me. Something similar happened to me the last time we did a list.

"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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