Pureflix Spits in the Soup and Other Short Stories
I had the privilege of having lunch with a filmmaker the other day after reading his script. I don't know whether we will carry his film or not (I hope we do); however, it was refreshing to listen to an artist share the vision he has for his film, considering how well written it is.
Pureflix would not work with him in spite of the film being quite evangelistic (I have despaired of ever seeing a really good evangelistic film) and in spite of the fact that he's worked with them before. He started to tell me his concern and I asked him if I could guess the issue with an analogy:
"You make what you KNOW is essentially a fine meal and they want to take it from you and spit in the soup."
Hollywood has rules. Nashville has rules. Salt Lake City has rules. None of them give creators any real amount of freedom to make what they want artistically. In all three cases, it's unbelievers making rules that they surmise by listening to people with specific agendas.
I get it. People like rules because they feel safe. I, for one, get nervous about making rules since the only holy Lawgiver is God. That does not mean that film execs shouldn't have standards, but I prefer they be based on the Law of God. At the same time, the content of the Bible with all of its depictions of man's sin comes into play at some level. Evil is defined as evil but it's not censored. It is portrayed in the light of truth.
Huh. I wonder if that could be done? Wait a minute....
Christian filmmakers need nuance. We all want it neat and tidy and safe. (Just like real life?) The requirements resulted in terrible films. Terrible in its lack of realism and loaded with sappy sentimentalism (a la Hallmark).
The church is going to have to figure out how to have some grace toward artists--grace that comes alongside to help rather than attack and presume the worst. Both sides need to be willing to listen and both sides need to show some grace as they put forward their ideas.
Unless we simply want more of the same.
To discuss the ethics of Christian film making and a whole gaggle of other topics, join our LOOR Founders group.
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