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Posts tagged "Disney"

Beneath the Pelagian Surface of Moana: A Conference Breakout Preview

Beneath the Pelagian Surface of Moana: A Conference Breakout Preview

Allow me to channel SNL’s Bennett Brauer (Chris Farley):

I don’t “read much” and I don’t
“look the part” I’m not
“seminary trained” or even
“theologically inclined.”

I don’t “know what ‘Pelagian’ means” and I
“don’t look comfortable in front of an audience” I
“sleep in my make-up” and
“also with stuffed animals” I guess I
“talk too much” and I
“sweat when I’m nervous” and I
“can’t remember names” because I’m
“too concerned with myself” even though I
“don’t bathe regularly” and I’ve
“let myself go.”

I haven’t “learned my lesson” my
“coffee hasn’t kicked in yet” I haven’t
“kept calm” or
“found my bliss” but I’m
“talking at this conference anyway.”

On the surface of things, Moana (Disney)…

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Moana Leads the Way Home (and to the Horizon)

Moana Leads the Way Home (and to the Horizon)

One of the more attractive elements of grace-based living is that it removes (in doctrine, anyway, if not always in practice) the pressure to discern every decision correctly. Both the roughing-it-through-the-grind and seeking-the-horizon are both valid and acceptable approaches to life. This stance contrasts with FOMO-driven media in both the general and Christian spheres. Such movies, books, sermons, etc emphasize the importance of striving over settling. Persistence involves driving forward toward goals, not simply making it through.

Mbird contributors (and, I think, readers) have diverse views on theology and practice, but we are mostly united in our skepticism of the ever-striving-forward…

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The Sun’ll Come Out Tomorrow in Tomorrowland:  Disney Does Eschatology

The Sun’ll Come Out Tomorrow in Tomorrowland: Disney Does Eschatology

The futuristic city of Tomorrowland in the film Tomorrowland rises from the amber waves of a vast field of ripened grain, gleaming in the sunlight like, well, like the New Jerusalem “coming down out of heaven from God” (Revelation 21:2). But this is the City of Man, or at least a possible city of humanity’s possible future as envisioned by writer-director Brad Bird. Bird’s vision is part utopian, part anti-dystopian diatribe, part pop eschatology, all wrapped up in a paradoxical package of American populist optimism mixed with elitist progressivism. With a little Steam Punk thrown in for good measure.

The city…

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Subject: Fwd: And They Lived Realistically Ever After

I usually roll my eyes at and delete email forwards. But I just received one worth passing on that had the subject “The endings of All the fairy tales……….” The email included about a dozen images of fairytale, cartoon, and superhero characters later in life with children on their hips, grey hair, beer bellies, and the like. Maybe you received this one back in 1999 or thereabouts, and I’ll admit that the quality degraded as I scrolled down, but the first couple are gems:

Cinderella

Cinderella is divorced…

Snow White

Snow White has not been so lucky…

Another Week Ends: Helicopter Parents, Love (Not Actually), Llewyn Davis, Joe Jonas, the Inner-Hamlet, and Why?

Another Week Ends: Helicopter Parents, Love (Not Actually), Llewyn Davis, Joe Jonas, the Inner-Hamlet, and Why?

1) A week past Black Friday, we’re well into the holiday shopping and the family travel bargaining, and so it’s no surprise that this is also when we find a slew of family sociology on the internet. Exhibit A: Slate’s piece on the Millennial Anxiety and the Helicopter Parent. In it, therapist Brooke Donatone explains that soaring rates of college- and post-graduate-aged depression and suicide, as well as the more general epidemic of “adultescent” anxiety, has a lot to do with conflict-fear, and the 20-something’s unpreparedness for disappointment and failure. Over-parenting is the cause of these “crash landings” to the…

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Mockingbird at the Movies: Sin and Redemption in Frozen

Mockingbird at the Movies: Sin and Redemption in Frozen

This reflection on redemption ‘in practice’ in Disney’s movie Frozen comes from our friend Michael Belote, first posted on his blog Reboot Christianity. (And while we’re on the subject of illustrations/examples for Christianity, we couldn’t recommend more highly his Geek’s Guide to Christianity.)

Every year on Black Friday, my wife goes shopping and the boys and I go to my parents’ house. We watch some football, eat some leftovers, play some video games, and (usually) go to a movie. This year we went and saw the best theology-rich movie in years.

Seriously, this movie was amazing. It was poignant, subtle, brilliantly directed…

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Wrecking Ralph: Extinguishing the Quest for Glory

Wrecking Ralph: Extinguishing the Quest for Glory

Score one for this year’s winter film season! With a half-dozen movies premiering on Mockingbird’s *must* see list (including The Hobbit, Les Mis, James Bond, Django Unchained…), Wreck-It-Ralph kicks off the winter with a pixelated parable of judgment, love, and identity so potent,  you half-expected to see Martin Luther listed as a guest-writer in the credits. Okay, so perhaps I’m a bit over-enthusiastic in my praise of Disney’s newest in-house release, but when movie critics call Wreck-It Ralph “pixar-esque,” well, we’ve kind of got to take notice.

Perhaps there’s no better world to play out the drama of law-trapped characters than the unforgiving…

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The Fame Formula: The New Performancism of Children’s Television

The Fame Formula: The New Performancism of Children’s Television

A very interesting article by Bryan Lufkin over at The Atlantic about the seismic thematic shift that’s taken place on children’s networks like Nickelodeon and Disney. Lufkin calls it “The Hannah Montana Effect”, citing several primetime slots  currently being occupied by 30-minute programs about the everyday lives of rich and famous, dream-achieving youngsters. It’s a little weird, considering the 90s were filled with shows about average, no-count, oddball children. Doug Funny had a C average, kept getting beat up by Roger Klotz, had a green friend Skeeter, and could never move past friendship with Patti Mayonnaise. The protagonist of Hey…

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Sanctuary! – a Theological Appreciation of an Old Practice

Sanctuary! – a Theological Appreciation of an Old Practice

If you’ve ever seen the Disney movie, or read Victor Hugo’s book – you know about the practice of Sanctuary given by the church to those seeking asylum. While the actual practice of asylum has varied since its first attestation in the year 343, the basic gist is that anyone who was pursued by secular authorities to be punished for crimes committed could find protection by fleeing to the knocker of the church. The idea behind this practice was primarily the maintaining of the distinction between sacred and profane; the boundaries of church were sacred and must not be sullied…

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A Row of Your Favorite Cereals, Anytime You Want: The Gospel According to Pixar

A Row of Your Favorite Cereals, Anytime You Want: The Gospel According to Pixar

Anthony Lane of The New Yorker penned a fantastic and very thorough profile of everyone’s favorite studio last week, Pixar. As suspected/rumored, their “corporate culture” appears to have been lifted straight out of Grace in Practice; they understand intuitively that great work is always the fruit of a root, that motivation/the internal life is everything when it comes to creativity, that art cannot be leveraged out of people. Indeed, (lasting) collaboration itself is a matter of friendship and shared interest, and even perfectionism can be subordinated to story. Lane’s descriptions of Pixar head honcho John Lasseter almost bring Thornton Wilder’s…

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