"Film as dream, film as music. No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls."
I love films.
I love God.
At times in the churches history (and in some places its present) these two loves would have been in conflict. Films were seen as inherently evil. Anyone who has seen the Father Ted episode incorporating a protest outside a cinema can imagine the conflict that faith communities have had with the art form of film. We can't remain faithful to God and engage with the dirtiness of celluloid stories...or can we?
Humanity has always told stories. More times than not it has told stories to make a point. It has held the truths (and sometimes the lies) of our world within the narratives it has told. It has desired to pass it's tales of good and evil, darkness and light, death and life, and order and chaos onto those with ears to hear.
Modern humanity is no different. From comics to TV shows to opera to ballet to books to pop songs, we desire to tell stories. Perhaps the most visceral of all modern storytellers is the cinema. Sitting in the dark, surrounded by immersive sound, while the characters play out their plots; there is nothing quite like cinema's ability to pull us deep into the story and the story deep into us.
I believe that the greatest story of all is the on going story of God at work in the world. When I'm pulled into the depths of film I can't help but see motifs of, allusions to and direct metaphors pointing towards this greatest story of all. The storytelling of film pulls me into the story being told by God.
Art in any form invites us to engage with some story bigger than itself and film is no different. I don't think film can ever tell the whole story but I think it often invites us to see an aspect of the big story of God through a different lens (No pun intended! (Who am I kidding? that pun was completely intended!)).
With all this (and many other thoughts) in mind, on 22nd August we are going to have a night of exploring faith through the movies. We're calling it "Reel Faith" (because as we've established I like a pun.) We'll be enjoying an evening of food, film and a good chinwag about the small and big story within the film. We'll be using the Cutty Sark Centre's professional community cinema facility and, as always, our two course meal will be something special too.
We're kicking off what will hopefully be a series of Reel Faith nights with the beautiful Les Miserables. We'll be exploring themes of grace, forgiveness, revenge, mercy, justice and the tensions that exist when these things (as they often do) collide.
For more details of the event on 22nd August click HERE.
This blog post was brought to you by....Oli Higham
Oli Higham is part of the leadership team at the Rock Community Church. He finds it hard to sum himself up in a few sentences. However he loves Jesus and is also rather fond of his family, films, coffee, rugby, Arsenal FC, poetry, spray paint, beards, cooking and laughing.