Friday, June 15, 2012

For Greater Glory

A movie review

     Brenda and I saw it last night, in a nearly empty theater.  I had heard about it only by reading a recommendation at Lew Rockwell's website.  I heartily second the recommendation.

     The movie, For Greater Glory,  is a first class production.   It has great cinematography; good performances by Andy Garcia, Peter O'Toole, Bruce Greenwood, and others; and a great musical score by James Horner.  It is a little bit longer than the average movie (it is a few minutes over two hours), which I especially like:  blessed is that movie which is good enough to know that it is a good movie, and isn't self-conscious about taking time.  This is such a movie.

     Based on the true story of the rebellion of the Cristeros against the secular, obnoxious, rude, and violent federal government of Mexico in the 1920s, it is pretty honest in dealing with faith, world, contradiction, ambiguity, and determination as they flow through cultures and individuals.

     Two things were particularly good about this movie, from my viewpoint.  The first thing is, that it portrayed a slice of history about which I was previously unaware, and deals with events in Mexico as if they were about real human beings like ourselves (shock! how liberal, how humanistic), instead of treating them as the Other, who are vaguely, and belong, South Of The Border.

     The second thing is, that I'm sure that the good people of Mexico are neither the first people, nor the last people, who have had to figure out for themselves how they are going to deal with a secular, obnoxious, rude, and violent federal government. . . . (Long pause, while we think about that for a few moments.)

     The Hollywood crowd seems to be downplaying this movie.  (I am told that the independent producers of this film have found it difficult to distribute it.)  Well, of course:  it can't play to a demographic.   It isn't a chick flick, so there go the ladies; it isn't a video game, so we've lost the young boys; it isn't even vaguely pornographic, so there go the men.  It isn't a feel-good movie, so there goes the Disney-Cinderella crowd.  It isn't about running drugs, so there goes the urban demographic, which is supposedly always morbidly interested in that.  It isn't a rehash of World War II, so there go the veterans.  It isn't set in the Middle East, so it doesn't matter to the intelligentsia.    It isn't about the Wonderful 'Mericans; so why would the Wonderful 'Mericans be interested?

    All that being said, that leaves us pretty much on our own to find out when and where it is playing near where we live.  I highly recommend this movie and plan to see it again, very very soon, before it is gone from the theaters.

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     Wikipedia has a brief entry here.

     For a review by Ryan McMaken, go here.

     For a trailer on YouTube, see here.

     Have you seen it?  Care to comment?

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