I watched 2 movies this week as part of my preparation for the next sermons on marriage.
As a pastor, I watch movies like a coach watches film of the opposing team. What are the strengths of the argument? Where does it fail to answer the most pressing questions of humanity? How does the film articulate truth that is God’s truth? How does the film lie to me and deceive me?
These 2 movies were pretty good– He’s just not that in to you and Couples Retreat. CR was pretty silly, but a good illustration of how distracted people can get from their marriage priority.
HJNTITY was by far the better. Ben Affleck’s character gives a passionate speech on why he is opposed to marriage that really captures a common sentiment– why do I need a piece of paper to tell you I love you… The depiction of the affair is heart-wrenching and the friendship that develops into something more captures some of God’s plan for what should be at the core of marriage– best friends, committed to the other’s good.
Both of these were released this year. What are some of your favorite marriage movies? Which ones give hints of God’s best and which ones have bought into a lie?
We are going to spend Nov 15 and Nov 29 digging into the back end of Eph 5. Tomorrow I’ll have some more introductory thoughts for you.
November 12, 2009 @ 4:09 pm
Marley and Me – a great redemptive movie about marriage and family [more so than about pets]; was totally surprised by this one
November 12, 2009 @ 4:09 pm
Arsenic and Old Lace. It’s an oldie, but a goodie. Presents a humorous situation of having to hide your families “quirks” from your spouse.
November 12, 2009 @ 5:45 pm
Enchanted April. It’s such a sweet, meandering period film. Tracing the ebb and flow within marriage, this lovely film shows how slight perspective changes can reinforce commitment.
Another favorite is People Will Talk. Ok, it’s a B&W and I’ll admit my crush on Cary Grant helps, but I am inspired by the story of Dr. Praetorius’ sacrificial and protective love. And in turn he is bolstered by the respect and trust of his wife.
There are some things that can’t be explained. My repeated viewing of Barbara Streisand’s Mirror has Two Faces is one of them. It is a steamy flick, but I keep returning to it. Probably because of the curious and comical treatment of the consternation that builds when the characters marry for practical purposes and neglect the essential physical relationship.
November 13, 2009 @ 10:16 am
We’ve been struggling to think of good ones! For every movie about marriage, there must be 100 about marriage as the END rather than the MEANS. Perhaps that contributes to folks’ disillusionment with it.
If it’s the repository of two people’s hopes and dreams, it cannot help but be a disappointment. Carolyn and I tend to view it as a vehicle to bringing glory to God — just like treasure, time and talents.
November 13, 2009 @ 11:16 am
I seem to have watched a lot of movies on airplanes this month … three which showed very positive views of marriage were Julie and Julia (bit saccharin but refreshing to watch a movie which is so cheerful and so promotes the strength which comes from a healthy marriage relationship), The Time traveller’s wife (which again shows fidelity and rich relationship) and finally My sister’s keeper (wept bucket loads – had to sit on the plane back from Kolkata with a blanket over my head, but at least I was on my own … once again showing a marriage surviving huge challenges – what can be more difficult than a child with cancer?). Is marriage making a come-back in the movies?
November 13, 2009 @ 12:31 pm
Not a movie, but a new TV show that has my interest is “The Good Wife.” While I wish the story line (husband cheats on wife & his mistakes become public) was not an increasingly common reality, I have been impressed with how the show has addressed many of the facets involved in such a situation (the marriage itself, how a wife responds, the children & extended family, co-workers, etc.) During this past week’s episode, I gave a “Good for you!” when the main character (the wife who had been cheated on) completely shut down a man who kept pursuing her romantically – the reason she gave him for not wanting to go down that road? “Because I’m married.” I was honestly surprised to see a prime-time TV show portray someone sticking to the covenant they made – even though in the world’s eyes she would’ve been justified if she had responded differently (the argument being: your husband cheated on you, so why shouldn’t you be able to do the same?) It will be interesting to see how the character/story develops . . .
November 14, 2009 @ 9:43 am
I’d have to say “Parenthood.” I love how Steve Martin’s character and his wife have a true partnership amid a swirl of family and work chaos. I like the emphasis on keeping your sense of humor and enjoying the ride. Another favorite is “She’s Having a Baby.” It takes Kevin Bacon’s character the whole movie to get that he isn’t holding up his end of the partnership, but I love how he keeps trying.
November 19, 2009 @ 8:02 pm
“Here here!” to Jeff’s recommendation of Parenthood; it’s one of my favorites – and hits so many marriage and family dynamics right on the head with great humor.
“The Story of Us” with Bruce Willis and Michelle Pfeiffer – is one of my wife and I’s favorites. A buritily honest – and needed – look at the less-than-ideal marriage realities. Any marriage worth it’s weight in (you choose the commodity) often has to come to the brink; for that is where genuine humility is cultivated. This movie is a refreshing break from hyper-romanticism that charactizes what Hollywood defines as true love and easily sets couples up for rude wakenings as they awaken (if ever) to what love is really all about.
October 24, 2018 @ 2:04 pm
War Room, Courageous, & FireProof are my 3 favorite !!