Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Suffering Together

There are a lot of hurting people in this world, and everybody needs love. As if recent things like the bombing in Boston, the explosion in Texas and earthquakes all around the world didn't make that clear enough, I was reminded of it again recently as I was watching the 2012 movie, The Lucky One.

At the beginning, we meet Sgt. Logan Thibault (Zac Efron), a U.S. Marine serving his third tour of duty in Iraq. There, in the desert sand, he discovers a photograph of an American woman. As he stops to look at it, there's an explosion nearby! It would have killed him if he hadn't stopped when he did! Fast forward several months, and we see that Sgt. Thibault still has his lucky photograph. Although he has no idea who the girl in the picture is, he and others believe her to be his guardian angel, because he has stayed safe despite several dangerous encounters!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Jackie Robinson Day

The new movie '42' is a home run!
Yesterday, we went to see the new movie, 42, which tells the true story of how Jackie Robinson got his start in Major League Baseball in the 1940s. I highly recommend the film, whether you're a baseball fan or not, but as with most movies today, I would caution parents about taking small children to see it because of the film's use of profanity - especially racial slurs. That said, I'm glad filmmakers didn't "pitch around" the issues of the day.

I'm also glad they didn't "pitch around" the role that Christian faith played in the story.

Besides Jackie Robinson, himself (played by Chadwick Boseman), the second most important character in the story is Branch Rickey (Harrison Ford), the executive for the Brooklyn Dodgers who chose Robinson specifically for the purpose of breaking baseball's unwritten color barrier. The mutual faith of these two men is alluded to early in the film by a humorous observation from Mr. Rickey:

"Robinson's a Methodist, I'm a Methodist, God's a Methodist... We can't go wrong!"

It's a line that elicited laughter from the rest of the theater, but - while I really don't think God cares very much about denominations - as a Methodist myself, I couldn't help but cheer just a little!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Would You Believe...?

Maxwell Smart, Agent 86,
"drops in" today!
At the height of the 60s spy craze, Mel Brooks and Buck Henry asked the question, "What would happen if James Bond and Inspector Clouseau somehow had a child?" Their answer... Maxwell Smart, Agent 86. For five years on network television, Don Adams played the bungling secret agent who helped America's CONTROL agency thwart the evil intentions of KAOS, whose Bond-like villains tried their best each week to Get Smart.

Get Smart really was a smart, fun show, which appealed to people on multiple levels. Some, no doubt, appreciated the satire of American politics. Others watched for the physical comedy, as Agent 86 fell in and out of trouble every week. And still others probably tuned in just to hear their favorite catch phrases (like "Sorry about that, Chief," and "Missed it by that much!") in Adams' unique voice! The series was cancelled in 1970, but not before winning 7 Emmy awards - 3 of which went to Adams for "Best Continued Performance in a Comedy".

Well, over the next few hours, I'd like to explain how there are no less than 764 life-altering lessons we can learn from watching this TV show. Would you believe it? 764!

No? Would you believe... if I include all the sequels and spin-offs of the show, I can list for you 209 important insights?

Still no? Eh... How about 3?