Finding Family Friendly Movies

Written by Jonathan on . Posted in Blog, Movies

How do you decide which movies are appropriate for your family?  How do you find good movies with meaning and a good message without all kinds of junk in the middle?

When was the last time you watched a movie that said this:

“There are those who claim it’s impossible to know what we’re meant to do or meant to be. But the folks who say that, tend to be looking for a God who shouts and completely miss the one who whispers.

“I side with Paul who wrote, “We see only a dim reflection as through a glass darkly, but one day we shall see face to face and what we now know in part we shall know fully but in the meantime these three things remain faith hope and love and the greatest of these is love.”

Love this quote from the movie: Finding Normal. http://ow.ly/JpfRc

Carrie and I really enjoy watching with our kids movies that have meaning.  Movies that have a great message. That inspire us to action and draw us to love, give and serve.  Not that all of them will be blatantly Christian, although those are the best. We want our children to be inspired and motivated to righteousness.

I also like watching action movies; thrilling movies that have you on the edge of your seat.  But, I’m not willing to compromise, if those movies are filled with worldviews that corrupt. 

“Whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”  Philippians 4.8

Because we take this seriously and realize how movies impact us so much, we rarely will see a movie without checking it out on www.pluggedin.com.   This site, by Focus on the Family, reviews almost every movie and includes it’s: synopsis, spiritual content, violence, profanity, positive element, etc.  For instance, here is their review of 50 Shades http://ow.ly/Jpnbi

Where can you go to find family friendly, motivational movies with an inspiring message?  You can check out pluggedin.com for a list.  You can also check out a new site I just heard about called www.IamFlix.com.   There is also http://www.christiancinema.com/.  Carrie often searches the Dove awards site: http://www.dove.org/. I’m sure there are others, so if you know one, please post it on our site below.

My encourage you to mix it up and declare that “It’s going to be a Movies with Meaning family night!” Be prepared for the kick-back.  They probably won’t always jump up and down in excitement.  The truth is these movies may have some bad acting, even some cheesy scenes, but there is Truth in these movies which is more important than always being steeped in entertainment void of the Truth.

It’s our job to lead them and guide our children to pursue the things of God and movies can be a fun, entertaining way to positively influence them.  If you aren’t putting them in front of some good movies and talking about the negatives in other movies, no one else will. Help them make decisions on what they should and shouldn’t expose themselves to.  And until they are mature enough to do that on their own, God has given them into your custody to “bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”  Ephesians 6.4

 Helping You Have Homes Devoted

Jonathan

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Movie Review: Frozen {And Discussion}

Written by Jonathan on . Posted in Blog, Movies

So I took some of my younger siblings to see Frozen the other day, at my 17-year-old and 15-year-old sisters’ begging and prompting after browsing the Pinterest pins about it,

listening to some of the songs on YouTube, and having been drooling over the concept art for months.  I guess that is what artists do, lol!

 

After my disappointment with the last Disney princess movie Tangled, I was skeptical about Frozen.  Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised and even took home some great discussion points.

Summary of the Film:

 

The movie is about two sisters, princesses Anna and Elsa.  Elsa has magical powers of ice and snow–she can turn an entire room into winter wonderland, snowman and all!  Anna, on the other hand, is just an ordinary girl that adores her sister.

 

One night, Anna wakes Elsa and begs her to “do the magic” so that they can build a snowman.  Elsa cannot resist, and they play for hours…until in a complete accident, Anna ends up getting struck by Elsa’s powers, knocking her unconscious.  Elsa panics and wakes her parents, the king and queen.  Anna is taken to a group of trolls where she is healed.  But her healing comes at a price; no longer does she remember Elsa’s powers, that, with the fear growing inside of her, are consistently growing worse.

 

Elsa and Anna grow up separately.  Elsa stays hidden in her room, wearing gloves to protect those that she loves, her parents being the only people that know of her secret.

 

When the girls are teenagers, their parents are shipwrecked, and they are all that each other has left.  But Elsa continues to stay hidden, the palace gates remain closed, as they had been since Anna’s accident.

 

A few years later, Elsa has come of age; she is to become queen.  The palace gates are opened, neighboring kingdoms’ royalty joins in the celebration of the coronation of the queen.  Among these is handsome Prince Hans, who immediately takes a liking to Princess Anna.  Anna, completely flattered and socially awkward, returns the affections, and upon a spur of the moment proposal, agrees to marry the prince that she had just met that day.

 

The couple happily makes their way to Queen Elsa, as she nervously oversees the party within the castle, wishing with all of her heart for it to be over.  She is tired of concealing her powers, she is fearful of anyone finding out.  Anna and Hans announce their marriage and ask for her blessing, but she refuses.  Anna grabs her hand and pulls off one of her gloves on accident as the two girls argue.  Elsa, ravaged by fear, angered at her sister’s audacity, gestures roughly, throwing her hand down–and in turn, throwing a huge chunk of ice at her guests.  She runs.  Out of the castle.  Out the gates.  To the North Mountain.

 

And inadvertently sets off an eternal winter throughout her whole kingdom.

 

Anna is stunned, but quickly gathers herself to go find her sister.

 

The major theme in this movie is true love.  And, surprisingly, it’s not the same kind of true love that is so popularly sung about in the other Disney Princess movies.  It a story about the love between two sisters.  

 

My Thoughts: 

I really enjoyed the music and the art in this film.  Disney did an excellent job with the story as well, afterwards I found myself using examples from the movie to illustrate storytelling points!  The scenes in the beginning with Anna and Elsa as children, the montage of their growing years as Anna begs Elsa to come and play made me cry–such beautiful and simple love that Anna yearned for from her sister.  It inspires such camaraderie for siblings…

 

The one of the only parts that I particularly did not care for was the scene with the trolls near the end.  They sing a song to Kristoff and Anna, trying to get them together, and use a couple of crude references.  Nothing serious, but bathroom humor type stuff.   And because I take things too seriously, it bugged me.  The other part would be when Elsa is building her ice castle after running away, she has an “attitude”, and her appearance changes with the fact–including her slightly slinky blue sparkly dress, complete with a slit up the front, only noticed at certain times.

 

All that to say, I was thrilled with the story, the rather unconventional Disney princess movie that teaches about true love as the love of family.  After taking my teenage siblings to see the movie, I took my 9-year-old brother and 6-year-old and 4-year-old sisters…toward the end of the movie, my 4-year-old sister was literally on the edge of her seat, “This is AWESOME!”

 

Discussion Points {SPOILER ALERT}:

 

Discuss the two young men in the movie.  We have Prince Hans: handsome, romantic, sweet, and “perfect”…royalty.  And we have Kristoff, not-so-handsome, sarcastic, smelly…and he sells ice for a living.  Both are interested in Anna, but who proves worthy?  

 

Why do you think that Kristoff was so surprised that Anna was going to marry someone that she had just met that day?

 

Do you think that it was wise of her to commit herself to Hans before she really knew him?

 

What do you think her life would have been like if Elsa had just blessed her marriage and did not question it?

 

When Elsa disappears into the mountains, she sings the song, “Let it Go”, where she throws caution to the wind, rebels against everything that she had enforced since her childhood, and abandons her kingdom.  She builds herself an ice-castle and lives all alone.

 

Do you think this was right of Elsa?  Why or why not?

 

Elsa has a special power that she can use to bless others, or to the detriment of those around her, including herself.  If she does not fill herself with and channel her powers with love, fear overwhelms her and traps her, hurts those around her.  

 

What is a special gift that you have that you could use to bless others through love, or through fear, hurt others?

 

As Anna’s heart is turning to ice, she searches for Kristoff.  An act of true love to thaw a frozen heart.  But when she sees Elsa in danger, knowing that she only has a few moments of life left, she throws herself in the way of the sword meant for Elsa’s life.

 

Anna chose to love her sister over herself, she chose to save Elsa’s life instead of her own.  That is true love.  What happened as a result of this act?  How can you show love to others by putting their needs before your own?  Can you think of another example from this movie of true love?

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