Tag Archives: Religion

Star Wars: the ambiguity of religion

There is something compelling about the Star Wars saga (I’m only referring to the original films 1977-1983). It manages to be original whilst being heavily plagiarised (from 1940s war movies and 1950s B-movies to pirates and Robin Hood movies, mixed … Continue reading

Posted in belief, Empire Strikes Back, faith, fantasy/supernatural, gender, good & evil, humility, masculinity, monasticism, morality, myth, religion, sexuality, Star Wars, The Return of the Jedi, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ida – the aesthetics of fake religion

The cinematography is truly beautiful, the film is not. It’s an emotionally deprived intellectual exercise. The characters are barely sketched and not allowed to emerge. Nothing really happens and nothing is really said. The photography quickly becomes pretentious to the … Continue reading

Posted in Christianity, faith, good & evil, Ida, monasticism, obedience, religion | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Indiana Jones & Empire Strikes Back – Belief

Religion, as argued in my post on the West Wing, is often assumed to be a person’s belief in a supernatural God. Yet anthropologists and sociologists of religion would wince at this statement. From a social scientific perspective, belief is … Continue reading

Posted in belief, Empire Strikes Back, Enlightenment, faith, fantasy/supernatural, Georg Simmel, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, knowledge/epistemology, magic, Malcolm Ruel, myth, nature, reality, reason/rationality, religion, scifi | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

West Wing’s Religion – Modern Rationalism and Fundamentalism

In movies, religion is often assumed to be a person’s belief in a supernatural God and that the Bible is the word of God to be taken literally. Religion thus gets neatly divided into ‘good’ (progressive/liberal) and ‘bad’ (conservative) President … Continue reading

Posted in belief, Christianity, Enlightenment, evangelical, faith, knowledge/epistemology, magic, politics, Protestantism, reason/rationality, religion, science, West Wing | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Sleepy Hollow – Science, Magic, and Modernity

Faithful to gothic tradition, Sleepy Hollow has fear at its centre. Fear is here understood as what cannot be controlled by scientific reason, but it also associated with the horror of the sublime, as argued by Edmund Burke. Tim Burton’s film … Continue reading

Posted in 'othering', belief, Enlightenment, fantasy/supernatural, gender, Godfrey Lienhardt, horror, knowledge/epistemology, magic, masculinity, Max Weber, myth, nature, reality, reason/rationality, religion, science, Sleepy Hollow (1999), Stanley Tambiah, witchcraft | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boyhood – Gender (and Religion?)

Dr. Sharon Marcus (Columbia University) and Dr. Anne Skomorowsky (Columbia University) do a great job at analysing gender in Boyhood. They argue that the film shows how the coming of age of a boy, Mason, is about self-expression, self-confidence, and … Continue reading

Posted in autonomy, Boyhood, freedom, gender, humanity, love, masculinity, morality, personhood, religion | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

National Treasure – Sacralising the Nation

It seems befitting the Fourth of July to write about American myth-making. By ‘myth’, I do not mean something false, but the narrative vehicle for what is held as valuable and meaningful. Myths are, therefore, ‘true’ rather than ‘accurate’ representations … Continue reading

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Candyman – Class, Race & Durkheimian Religion

Candyman is jolly good fun and great food for sociological thought. As ever, this is not a review, but a short analysis of the film from a sociological angle. Set in Chicago, the film tells the story of Helen (Virginia … Continue reading

Posted in Candyman (1992), class, films, good & evil, horror, knowledge/epistemology, postcolonialism, race/diversity, reality, reason/rationality, religion | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sunshine – mission on the cheap

Sunshine was a very bad film but, like many commercial but pretentious films, it was filled with material for some fun deconstruction. Religion, science, democracy and even epistemology, it was all packed in there in the most splendidly confused way. … Continue reading

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