By: Hawk Ripjaw –
God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness
Every time one of these faith-based movies comes out, my mother or another relative tells me how it’s a great movie. How it inspired them. How it reminded them of how great it is to be religious. This is why I don’t like faith-based movies: they aren’t good. Yes, they’re good in the sense of delivering a message and reaffirming why people who subscribe to that faith do so, but they are preaching to the choir. Anyone who’s religious won’t be getting any really profound experience from it, and anyone who isn’t won’t care. So why watch it at all?
As far as I’m concerned, the best sort of religious movie is the one that bridges the gap between religion and secularism (not a conversion like Kevin Sorbo’s ludicrous turn in the original God’s Not Dead), especially when they’re made introspectively by atheists and especially when they take religion and make it a bit more nebulous, because everyone experiences it differently, right? The God’s Not Dead series go the opposite route of dividing the world into two people: Christians, and the horrible, hateful pieces of shit that despise God and everything Christianity stands for. How does that encourage thought and discussion? How does that challenge either side of the argument (if there even is one in the first place)? What is the point?
I cannot wait for this wave of pandering religious films to end.
Ready Player One
When the best thing most people say about a book is “the audio version is narrated by Will Wheaton,” it doesn’t bode well for the movie adaptation–unless, of course, Steven Spielberg is directing that movie. But seriously: the Ready Player One novel is pretty infamous for being a series of pop culture references amongst really, really shitty plotting that doesn’t tell its own story so much as exist for those very references. It seems that this movie’s entire world revolves around “That’s cool, I remember the Iron Giant” and so on. Yet if there’s a director that can unite those references and make them awesome in a world that has another reason for existing, it’s Spielberg.
I don’t have much to say about this. It’ll probably be fun and I’ll probably forget about it by next month.
Tyler Perry’s Acrimony
Another year, another shitty looking marriage drama from Tyler Perry. This man has done almost 20 movies and damn near every single one of them has been about good people in bad relationships with worse people and it continues on until either the terrible person gets their comeuppance or they learn an important lesson about not beating your wife. Acrimony looks to make villains out of everyone, swapping out “Be nice to your spouse because Jesus” for “fucking kill people when they do mean things to you.” I like the idea of how this will probably escalate in a very hilarious way. Taraji P. Henderson’s character appears to start with property damage, escalating to fighting people, and ending with trapping her former lover on a boat and attacking him with an axe. These sorts of pseudo-erotic thrillers always have some sort of fun factor, and I can almost guarantee that this will have its share even if it doesn’t achieve the recent great heights of The Boy Next Door or even When the Bough Breaks.
Taking Perry’s brand of “don’t be mean to your spouse” and mixing it with massive amounts of rancor can only result in camp. I am ready.