BO Sheds Light On Religious Film Debate?

    May 22, 2008 – “Can God make one movie franchise a hit and another flop?” asks Time magazine reviewer Richard Corliss. Syndicated conservative columnist L. Brent Bozell III cites that quote in pointing out how pro-Christian Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian is rolling up healthy box office now, while anti-religious The Golden Compass was a disappointment last year.
    To answer Corliss’ question, Bozell writes, “God isn’t playing favorites with the public – the market is playing favorites with God. There’s no public appetite for atheist fantasies about ‘killing God.’ But  ask Mel Gibson if he can fill a movie theater with a film with explicitly positive Christian themes in it.”
    The ever-amusing New York Post headlined Bozell’s opinion article “God Cleans Up At the Box Office.”

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    Here’s a link to the full text of the Time magazine article cited above, which examines marketing issues in both the selection of films, shaping their content and presenting them. However, I would say Corliss approaches from an artistic view – how he thinks audiences should view movies – rather than accepting audiences attitudes for the way they are.
    "The two movies were alike in at least one major way: they did their darnedest to mute elements of religion," writes Corliss. "Not many kids beg to be told a ripping yarn with a feline Messiah. The theological touches in the Lewis and Pullman books are things for adults to ponder--and, when the movie versions come out, to praise or protest."

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