Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Christianity [For Sale] Today


The New York Times tells us about another Hollywood outreach to evangelical wallets (HT). This time it's the movie Evan Almighty, apparently the sequel to the irreverent if not blasphemous Bruce Almighty, in which Jim Carrey trades places with God and promptly makes a mess of things.

So it appears that Evan Almighty doesn't contain any humans acting as God, which is probably good, but I think it's safe to say that making a comedy out of a biblical story is something less than prudent. But then we're talking about Hollywood, and if they can keep from sensationalizing the Noah-getting-drunk episode, we might as well be grateful.

One might expect a little more discernment from Christianity Today, but if one were to do that one would be disappointed. The latest issue, which I saw last week, is wrapped in a faux cover that serves as a full two-page advertisement for Evan Almighty. It's one of the more appalling things I've seen in a while.

John Carney summarizes the story of this sellout on his blog. I've been searching for an online image of the magazine cover ad, but apparently no one has scanned it yet. If you really want to get a taste, this page of "ArkAlmighty" downloads might give you a very small sense of what we're talking about, but you really should browse your local bookstore to get the full effect.

6 comments:

Chris Anderson said...

Ben,

CT spoke positively about the first installment, Bruce Almighty, as well. I addressed it at MTC , and had one of the guys that writes on movies for CT comment. It's astounding.

Chris Anderson said...

Sorry for the messy link.

Ryan Martin said...

Neat-o. Simony really is not as bad as those medieval theologians said it was. After all, they were all Catholic.

Of course, American Evangelicalism even encourages you to host a bible study around that great cinematic epic which here you mention, Bruce Almighty. But, hey, it's "culture", so it's redeemable, i guess.

Ben said...

Here's a lovely illustration of the mindset CT is profiting from.

G-Harmony said...

So it appears that Evan Almighty doesn't contain any humans acting as God...

Actually, the NY Times article states:

By comparison, “Evan Almighty” seems an unlikely candidate for this kind of marketing. Unlike “The Passion of the Christ,” it is a comedy that portrays God in the flesh (played again by Morgan Freeman, wearing a natty white suit).

Nath @ Reformed Geek said...

Here is a link to a graphic of the front cover. I got it first from Pulpit Magazine.