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2004-05-29 05:18:05.710825+00 by Dan Lyke 2 comments

I have a confession to make. I went to see a Macaulay Culkin movie. On opening night.

And we loved it. Went to see Saved! tonight and laughed. A lot. Along with the rest of the theater. It's a film about a couple of students in a heavily Christian (with a capital "C") high school, crises of faith, hipocrisy and belief. But what impressed me most about the movie is that heavy satires often devolve into a preachy sermon for something. Although everyone who's lived in the Bible Belt has seen first-hand most of the vignettes lampooned in this movie, it's hard to imagine anyone secure in their faith not laughing as hard as us atheists as Hilary Faye (Mandy Moore) angrily hollers "I am filled with Christ love!", or snickering as Pastor Skip (Martin Donovan) tries to get hip with the kids while preaching out "Who's down with G. O. D.?"

Yet in that framework the movie manages to make us care about wheelchair bound Roland (the aforementioned Macaulay Culkin) or the pregnant teen Mary (Jena Malone), who's faith got her into that state, and whose crisis of faith is the centerpiece of the movie.

The ending, and in fact the story as a whole, wasn't quite pulled off with the same strength as the individual parts were, but there were enough laughs that I can recommend this one.

[ related topics: Religion Children and growing up Dan's Life Movies Pop Culture Handicaps & Disabilities ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2004-05-29 21:14:01.556382+00 by: Shawn

Thanks, once again, for the movie feedback. I found the trailers just as hilarious as you've described, but I was concerned about the plot going all preachy.

#Comment Re: made: 2004-05-30 02:29:35.535137+00 by: Dan Lyke

As I think about it a little bit more, I see it as somewhere between Dogma and Dana Carvey's "The Church Lady" character. In some sense it's a serious exploration of a religious sect by a screenwriter who I think at heart believes, in the other the characters are a charicature of an amalgam of people that we've all interacted with, and the only people who are really offended by that charicature are those who closely match it.

At any rate, there is perhaps a little preachiness in it, in the "it's okay to be a single mom" vein, and since I see so many who shouldn't be parents I struggled with that for a bit, but other than that I laughed. A lot.