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Cinema as Religion

March 4, 2010

I believe cinema is now the most powerful secular religion and people gather in cinemas to experience things collectively the way they once did in church. The cinema storytellers have become the new priests. They’re doing a lot of the work of our religious institutions, which have so concretized the metaphors in their stories, taken so much of the poetry, mystery and mysticism out of religious belief, that people look for other places to question their spirituality.

–George Miller, filmmaker

HT: Christopher Benson

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Justin Ruttkay permalink
    March 7, 2010 9:55 pm

    I can’t help but think back to Campus Crusade days in SLO when reading this. It seemed like every meeting the speaker would use a clip or segment out of a movie in order to draw their Biblical parallels. Whether it was Lord of The Rings, The Last of the Mahicans, or Forrest Gump…it was inevitable that the first 6o seconds of a CC sermon would start out engaging the audience with a visual stigma.

    • March 9, 2010 8:26 pm

      I know – I swear in our 4 years in SLO if we collected all of the clips used from Braveheart we probably were able to watch the whole movie. The part about this quote that got me was the part about religious institutions overly “concretizing” the metaphors. Its as if we couldn’t permit the truth to come to us symbolically and so we have to reduce it to mere propositions (not that there is anything wrong with propositions in themselves) – we need both but the pendulum swung to far in favor of the proposition and now people are turning to religious symbols found in the theater (or in LOST if I may).

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