Comments about ‘From the Homefront: From the Homefront: The movie Mormon parents will enjoy’

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Published: Tuesday, July 12 2011 6:30 a.m. MDT

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Independent
Henderson, NV

Sounds interesting, but I still can't wait for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.

essay
Redwood Valley, CA

I love movies but from what little I saw about this movie, it didn't look interesting and wondered even about the appropriateness of it. So thank you for the recommendation.

Owen
Heber City, UT

Tiffany is too brave. I felt the same about the movie, but didn't dare recommend it to others. It's not linear story telling. It's art on film. Think Man's Search for Happiness combined with creation scenes -- only done right by your favorite photographer. Like life, the reward comes at the end if you can endure. But there is a lot of thinking along the way.

Peccatte
Tallahassee, FL

Thanks for the article. I had wanted to see this movie before and this reinforces my desire. I will surely seek it out.

I am still however trying to understand the point of the dinosaurs comment though.

Quayle
Dallas, TX

Caution: this is a non-typical movie that is very daring and ambitious in how it uses film to convey its message. This is not just another Hollywood movie crafted to entertain with cotton candy.

But if you have the patience to see something other than the standard schlock, this is an amazing and provocative and powerful movie about life and joy and pain and good and evil. My wife and I have been talking about it off and on for a week now, after seeing it.

Also, I would say that this is not Man's Search for Happiness; it is probably closer in theme to another film familiar to much of this readership.

Don't go if your wife wants to see a chick-flick. I would even suggest you may not want to go if you don't like Citizen Cain because of the way it cinematically tells its story.

But if you want to see a powerful and meaningful dramatic portrayal of the deepest questions of life, I can't recommend it enough.

Rancho63
Cottonwood Heights, UT

My wife and I were anxious to see this movie and were greatly disappointed. Early on people were walking out. One person on "All Things Considered" commented that she was "horrified" to learn that people were walking out. Seriously? Horrified? How pretentious and smug.

The creation scenes were beautiful to a degree but I have seem much better. They should have been filled with joy and awe but for a reason I can't explain, I started feeling depressed. The prehistoric scenes were sophomoric. I got the point about about abuse.

After sitting in agony for two hours (the sound was either ear shattering loud or the voice overs were in unintelligible whispers) the music had lyrics about "Amen, Amen, Amen,..." and I thought o goody someone said the closing prayer and we can leave, but it kept going ad nausium. A reviewer that Sunday night on PBS was commenting on the ducumentary "Buck." She said it made her want to be a better person. The "Tree of Life" just made me want to slit my wrists.

Maybe that was the point of the movie? I am just not sophisticated and intellectual enough to do Malick.

Jason F.
Provo, UT

Rancho - While I can understand those walking out, it can be disconcerting to find yourself completely immersed in and attuned to a film's emotional world, while realizing that others in the same theater are so offput as to want to walk out. Nothing particularly smug or pretentious about it.

As for the creation sequences - the film is filtered through the consciousness of a man grieving his brother's death and trying to come to grips with his own place in the universe, so there is a certain sorrowful feeling to the early sequences of the film. It doesn't hurt that Preisner's "Lacrimosa" (a piece written in memory of his good friend, the great filmmaker Kieslowski) is playing on the soundtrack. However, the film does get much more joyful - some of the scenes of childhood are among the most transcendent and euphoric ever captured on film

Ultimately, you either connect to the film or you don't. I have seen the film twice now, and can honestly say that I want to be a better person for it. However, it's definitely not a matter of intelligence or sophistication, but rather being attuned to the filmmaker's sensibilities.

michaelm
Waukesha, WI

I have to question anything with Sean Penn, not that I am critical of his acting, but his politics which are always a large part of his acting choices are often contrary to everything a conservative family minded person stands for.

As an artist, which I am, I try to be considerate of the art itself, still I find art and entertainment personal and hate to contribute to the pocketbooks of those who use that money in a blatant attempt to destroy the things I hold dear.

Even with all that reading revues of the film and talking online with friend who saw it most seem not to come away confused but depressed. Many feel drained and disillusioned. I cannot understand how our reporter came out so uplifted and seeing it as a great parental movie. I will rent it as it's available at Blockbuster online already, another indicator that it's not as great a movie as portrayed. But like other life sucking movies I'll have a happy, light, and uplifting movie in the background to lift my spirits after what most people see as a downer of a movie.

bookish
Salt Lake City, UT

I haven't seen this movie and don't know much about it, but I recently spoke with a friend at work who has seen it. He said it was pretty much the worst movie he has ever sat through in a theater, and his friend he saw it with got up and left half way through. My friend sees a lot of independent movies that are different from the average blockbuster, so I don't think it would be fair to simply say he "didn't get it." I'm curious to see what the fuss is about, but I'll wait to see if my library gets it instead of spending time and money at the theater.

Johnny Triumph
American Fork, UT

So....where's it showing?

Geebes
TEMPE, AZ

On one hand I really enjoyed this film. On the other, I wouldn't recommend it to everyone.

For those who think deep about the purposes of life, who find symbolism and meaning in the mundane, who are fascinated with the process of creation in all its forms, and who have an extremely long attention span - this is for you. For everyone else I guess there is Thor and Transformers.

A sign of a good movie for me is when I am still thinking about it the next day, and that was very much the case for this movie (as expressed in the article). The film begins with a verse from Job 38, and drew a lot of themes from that book. And like Job, it is somewhat confusing and depressing until the end. But contrast is necessary in order to be realistic, and avoid being fantastic and 'cheesy'.

Owen
Heber City, UT

@ michaelm. You're worried that a portion of your entertainment dollar may be going to an actor (or athlete or writer) whose politics or morals don't match yours? Good luck with that.

Does the same hold true for all the other names in the credits who also earn money from the movies you see? Editors? Producers? Coaches (I've seen G.A.s sitting within earshot of the bench)? Publishers? Video game-programmers? If that were the case most of us would sit home with the teeveee off, nothing to read, nothing to do but interact with family and ponder -- which, by the way, is what this movie is about.

Rancho63
Cottonwood Heights, UT

My being snarky is another way to say some will greatly enjoy the movie and some will not. The reviewer on "All Things Considered" was not so worried that people left and interrupted those so deeply transfixed as she was horrified that anyone would dare walk out on a masterpiece. She must have been intimately in tune with Preisner.

Geebes, does it automatically follow that if one does not like the movie, that he or she cannot think deeply about the purpose of life, etc etc?

Also, some who were emotionally abused in childhood may find this movie too much to be subjected to.

Loves SLC
SLC, UT

What Kool Aid has this writer been drinking? She is writing for an LDS focused news organization and not one of the local weekly Tabloids. This was the worst movie I have ever almost seen [we walked out after an hour]. If your idea of a wonderful insight into the meaning of life is to have Sean Penn take an hour in Testimony meeting talking about his insight into the divine, then you might like this movie. I wanted to jump up and scream, "If you only knew"! This movie will drive 99.9% of any LDS audience crazy to the point of walking out. I am a movie nut and often enjoy an actor's work even when I strongly disagree with their lifestyle or philosophy, but this one is so far out of bounds that it should be banned even in San Francisco. Shame on you; your parents taught you better than this. You should take your family to see "17 Miracles" if you want to have an uplifting evening.

Alpine Blue
Alpine, UT

@ Jason

Thank you for your excellent review and insights into Malick's search for meaning. Trying to track down where it being shown in order go see it this weekend.

Newbury Park Mom
NEWBURY PARK, CA

I'm confused. The review on Fandango by this movie directed by Terrence Malick is rated PG-13 for scenes of violence, abuse and several instances of language. I can only surmise that there are two versions of this movie circulating... because this "mormon parent" would never consider seeing this film.

Independent
Henderson, NV

Hey Newbury, does that mean you don't read the Book of Mormon either? It's all about context.

Freedom
Huntsville, UT

I was excited about your title. But sorely disappointed when I read your article. Not every Mormon family enjoys witchcraft. We never got on that 'cult like following' train.

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT

"Not every Mormon family enjoys witchcraft. We never got on that 'cult like following' train."

A faithful Latter-day Saint can most certainly remain true to the teachings of the Church and enjoy Harry Potter, or at least aspects of it. I have 'issues' with Harry Potter like I have issues with many publications or many forms of media from many diverse authors. However, I don't have to agree with something to enjoy it.

I enjoy a lot of British programming (Doctor Who wins them all) and often will find very atheist themes and ideas in them. I recognize these and simply disagree. They have the right to story tell from their belief system just as we in the Church have the same right.

If I created a book about a wizard who was good, clean, and in every way LDS... and magic was simple a parable for the priesthood - there most certainly is nothing wrong with it. If I promoted sin as acceptable behavior, then certainly there is a problem.

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I am only commenting as your statement of disappointment and cult reference infer that people who enjoy HP are doing something morally wrong. - which would be untruthful.

Vanka
Provo, UT

Note to DN Monitors: The movie "The Tree of Life" that Ms. Lewis recommends in this article begins with and is based entirely on the statement: There are two ways through life."

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But they are not the ways Ms. Lewis interprets from this film.

There are two ways through life.

One way believes there are only two ways through life, the right way and the wrong way. This way assumes holism, rationalistic metaphysics, monism, and collectivism. It attempts to force all things into "one great whole". Because it presume you and your kin got the absolute, "one and only true" (right) way, and everybody else needs your patronizing, condescending "help" to come around to your right way, this way is fundamentally haughty, condemnatory, condescending, closed, conservative, and intolerant.

The other way believes there is an infinite plethora and plurality of ways through life, and yours is just one: your personal, unique way. Because it does not force its way into the superior moral and epistemic position, this way advocates individualism, empiricism, diversity, and pluralism. It is fundamentally accepting, tolerant, open, generous, and liberal.

Which way are you going through life?

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