Wednesday, May 11, 2011
At the Movies with Students Part 2
Over the next week we're continuing to think about how to encourage teens to approach media; especially television, movies and music.
As they live their lives in the middle of culture it's the parent's and pastor's responsibility to equip them to engage media through the lens of truth.
There are seven question I love teens to consider when engaging with media. For the first two questions check out
"At the movies with students part 1".
Here are questions three and four.
How does it portray authority?
Honestly, this question may stem from my growing up in the 80's, but it's still relevant for today. It seems that every movie in some way showed parents, principles, coaches and police as either stupid or evil. One of my favorite movies was "Ferris Bueller's Day Off". Remember how clueless the parents were and how vindictive the principle was? We all wanted Ferris to succeed in his rebellion. My son Zach gets up every morning 1 ½ early so he can watch at least 2 episodes of "Saved by the Bell". One thing about that show that’s very interesting is that you rarely see parents. All the time I ‘m watching it thinking “where in the world is mom and dad”? Recently movies like "The Social Network" subtly portray authority negatively.
Sure, much of authority is corrupt and disconnected, but authority isn't the "a" word. God has established it for our good. Students need to see it clearly and Biblically.
Does it communicate anything about God?
Not every movie talks about or mentions God but many do. From the "Book of Eli" to the" Adjustment Bureau" to "Bruce Almighty", there are many opportunities to watch and reflect on what media is saying about God and learn how our culture views him. One of my favorite "Glee" episodes is the one about "grilled cheesus".
"Grilled Cheesus Preview"
If you haven't seen it you should check it out. It's an episode that sheds light on how a student who is totally disengaged from religion might view God and prayer.
The point is when we go to the theater, turn on the radio or watch our favorite TV show, media is teaching us something about God. Our students must ask good quesions and filter what they're seeing / hearing with truth.
Students are living in a world where there they have more access than ever before. They are interacting with media on many different levels. May we be people that help them think through what they're seeing and hearing.