I was interviewed by John Piper’s website in response to their questions about horror movies. Understandably, and respectfully, they do not share my appreciation of horror. But they were very open-minded and open-hearted to listen to me and give me a voice.
I really think Christians need to realize the tremendous moral power of the horror genre. It’s not for everyone, but God loves the horror genre, so Christians should at least respect it.
The movie IT, is a classic coming of age horror story of a group of young misfit outcasts who must not only face the returning supernatural evil in their small town, but face the fears and evils in their own lives in order to grow up. It’s not for the feint of heart, and it’s not perfect, but I think it exemplifies moral lessons in line with the Christian worldview.
Some people think that the Bible only describes sex and violence with an historical “reporting” kind of purpose.
Boy, do they have a problem with Jesus, the master storyteller, who used extreme violence in fictional parables to communicate the Kingdom of God. And learn how Revelation’s and Daniel’s visions are virtual feasts of cinematic gore and depravity. There is a holy purpose to depicting disgusting evil in storytelling. Learn how it can be redemptive without being exploitative.
God uses profanity in his holy Word when making important spiritual accusations. I am not exaggerating to make a headline. Some believers just don’t realize that the Bible does not fit the “Christian film” category of storytelling. It does not receive a Dove Award for being family friendly. But that doesn’t justify gratuitous cussing. Learn the difference here.
The Bible is not shy when it comes to describing sexuality of all known kinds, marital, adulterous, heterosexual, homosexual, rape, fornication and more. Ezekiel 16 and 23 are R-rated sexually violent symbolic fiction. The Song of Solomon is undeniably erotic literature. Learn the reason why God is not as prudish as some of his believers when it comes to depicting sexuality in the Bible. And learn the difference between exposing evil and exploiting it in storytelling.
The Bible is quite explicit at times in its depiction of gory, gross or disgusting acts of evil.
Learn why it is important to God that evil be depicted accurately in stories, or the redemption of the story will not be believable.
The Bible is Rated R. Parental Discretion is advised.
Every worldview is a story that has a narrative of Creation, Fall and Redemption.
Every movie has a worldview.
I explain the components of a worldview and how they are incarnated within a story in movies.
This will help you understand the underlying meaning of movies.
Get the full version of this lecture, complete with film clips here.
As a Hollywood screenwriter and best-selling novelist, I explore the power of storytelling in movies and in the Bible. I reveal the elements of worldview, and how storytelling incarnates meaning and worldview. I explain the nature of subversion, and how narratives compete and win in the culture wars of both movies and the Bible. I examine the Bible as a model for analyzing how sex, violence and profanity may be used in movies and storytelling. I look at four differences between exposing sin and exploiting sin. I describe the 9 basic elements of story structure used in movies and the Bible to communicate redemption. I describe the genre of horror and explain the 4 ways that horror is used redemptively in the Bible and in movies.
I think you will love these Powerpoint presentations with film clips!