Christians need to be serious about engaging our culture in a relevant and yet non-confrontational way. We need to find common ground with those who don't share our faith. What better way to do that than to use modern movies as a launching point for spiritual conversations?This book is exactly what we, as Christians, need at this point in time. I'm probably not the only one who has wondered if there is any benefit to seeing movies anymore. As is pointed out in the foreword for this book, Christians generally tend to fall into one of two extreme positions: either they avoid modern cinema completely, or they abandon discretion completely. The Message Behind the Movie dissects the "formula" (for lack of a better term) of the screen-writing process, and will instruct the reader in how to a) evaluate the movie from a Christian worldview; b) find elements within cinema which reveal deep-seated human needs and desires; and c) how to intelligently engage the unbeliever in a discussion about the movie. There is plenty to be learned from reading this book pertaining to apologetics, and it introduces the reader to some very simple ways of questioning the post-modern philosophy of our age.This is really the first book of its kind--the only other book like this in the past 100 years would probably be Francis Schaeffer's "Art and the Bible." Kudos to Mr. Beaumont for this much-needed, very unique work. I whole-heartedly recommend this book for all Christians!
In this book Beaumont explains some of the techniques used in producing movies as well as how those techniques are used to unfold the story on the screen. For example, I was amazed to find out that the musical score in The Fellowship of the Ring so precisely tracked the progression of the plot. But besides giving the reader insights and tools for increasing movie-watching enjoyment, Beaumont explains to Christians how they can analyze movies beyond merely the stylistic elements in order to understand the worldview of the movie and message that drives the movie. The book also contains helpful 'coffee-shop' dialogues that show how one can use great movies to discuss universal themes ultimately leading to the reality of God and divinity of Christ. A good read for parents and youth leaders who are concerned with the media's influence over young adults but don't think complete isolation from the world is the answer. Also, pastors and theologians may enjoy the weightier aspects of the book.