Saturday, December 10, 2011

Quick Thought: The warped pro-life message in 'Twilight: Breaking Dawn (Pt. 1)'

Because I love my wife dearly and deeply, I do things for her that I would rather not do and do them without complaint. Take, for instance, going along to the movies to see the latest installment of the Twilight saga. If you're a Twilight fan, then you should probably stop reading now because my [brief] review - as others have commented already - is rather harsh.

As I expected it be, 'Twilight: Breaking Dawn (Part 1)' was a steaming pile of faecal matter. Yes, those are very harsh words, but I can assure that that's about as crass as I will ever get in writing these blogs.

The acting was simply woeful and there were some very creepy and disturbing scenes (e.g. the "birth" scene and Edward "biting" Bella repeatedly in an attempt to "infect"/save her). Some might argue the movie was an "emotional rollercoaster" but 20 minutes in I didn't know myself if I wanted to gag myself or laugh out loud during those "intense" scenes. Bella was, predictably, as pandering and pathetic as she's portrayed in the books; Edward had about 20 different hair styles during the movie; and Jacob was as emo as emo can get. But to cap it all off there was a very, very warped pro-life message in the narrative.

I didn't know what to make of it. On the one hand Bella carries the baby through to term and the baby is born healthy, etc. but all this mish-mash of defending the baby's right to life before it all just left me lost and unconvinced. Edward wasn't much help either; he wanted the baby dead too!

There was definitely a pro-life message present, but I felt that it was rather lacklustre. It got lost in between all the "we have to kill it" arguments from the wolves and the "it's killing Bella" sub-narrative. Yes, in the end the baby is born, but Bella dies in the process after literally being beaten up and broken by her vampiric infant. It's not an overtly encouraging message. If anything it may plant a deep-seeded fear or apprehension towards fertility, pregnancy and childbirth. I can only imagine what pro-choicers would have made of it all.

Perhaps the underlying message here is that we shouldn't look to this sort of media for any sort of moral guidance or truth. But I say that as a man that's in a sense trained to read between the lines and abstract a meaning that is not explicit. Our youth, on the other hand, may take messages like these to heart because there's no denying that as a child gets older, influences like that pertaining to their parents, religion, etc. lessen in importance/relevance over time and the influence of the media strengthens; it - inevitably - begins to guide their moral compass. Thankfully there are exceptions to this "rule".

I'd be interested to hear what other Christians thought of this new Twilight movie. Feel free to shoot me an email with your thoughts.

Thanks again, as always, for reading.

Pax tecum.

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