Reaction to my admittedly negative take on the trailer for the upcoming documentary Oh My God was quite mixed with some agreeing with my observations and others thinking I was a bit to hasty in dismissing the film before seeing it. Which is great, that’s part of the fun of talking about movies in the first place. But when The Happy Catholic chastises you for being too harsh*, well, maybe it’s time to lighten up a little, at least for one post. So as a token of good will, I offer everyone this trailer for yet another soon to be released documentary, Act Of God, a film which which explores the psychological and spiritual effects that being struck by lightning has had on seven different people. And this time around I promise to be a minimum of 50% less curmudgeonly. At least for one post.
Now obviously this film takes a more how-brow approach to the subject matter than our typical fare around here as there appears to be no mention of the well-documented power of lightning to reanimate the dead and/or grant super human abilities. But even without that, the movie looks interesting anyway. And what I especially like about the trailer for Act Of God is that, unlike that other trailer I was maybe, possibly, perhaps a wee bit too hard on (see, I’m trying to play nice here), it does not immediately strike me over the head with what I perceive as a predetermined agenda. I’ve been watching these things long enough to know that almost no documentary is ever entirely fair or lacking in manipulation, but I like how it appears that the documentarians just cut on the cameras and let their subject’s do the talking.
And it should be fascinating talk indeed as the responses seem to range from one guy who sees the event as nothing but a cosmologically random occurrence, all the way to another guy who interprets what happened to him as a singular act of God worth changing his entire life over. I’m really interested in seeing if I automatically gravitate towards the more spiritual interpretation because of my Catholicism. As Catholic educator David Bennett points out, “a sacramental worldview, rooted in God's revelation to humanity, especially in the Incarnation, is experiencing God acting within the world in which we live, the world in which God chose to dwell for the sake of our salvation. As such, a sacramental worldview, perhaps given completely only through God's grace, allows us to perceive deeper meaning to what appear to be everyday symbols and events.” That being the case, how much more so then would I be tempted to see God in such a statistically unusual event as being struck by lightning? Still, maybe the skeptic will win me over.
So what about this one folks? Sound like a good night’s viewing or will you just wait until it shows up on the Weather Channel?
*By the way, Julie, your use of the word ‘extreme’ implies that I am an extremist. While this may indeed be true, as a nod to these more genteel times, I would prefer that in the future you utilize the phrase ‘catechetical zealot’ :)