Sunday, July 17, 2011

Harry Potter and the Missed Point

I just saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows part deuce. Loved it. It was much better than the last movie, Harry Potter and the Wandering Aimlessly for Two Hours. I’m going to talk specifics about the movie, so if you haven’t seen it yet put your fingers in your ears and sing “La, la la,” for a few minutes.

I just want to make a quick statement about a minor controversy going around concerning Potter and religion. No, I’m not going to address the fear some Christians express that J.K. Rollins books are bad because they contain magic. I’m going to brush that aside as quickly as if I had a flying broom. CS Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia is full of magic and Christians don’t have a problem with that. So I’m calling poppycock on that controversy.

I’m talking about the other popular opinion going around: that Harry Potter himself is a Christ figure because he is willing to sacrifice himself for humanity (or at least for all of Wizard-dum.) On that observation, I’m going to have to say movie analysts are missing the point.

People sacrifice themselves in movies all the time. Consider this scene:

Hero: I’m going in there.

Commander: Are you crazy? Don’t you know it’s suicide!

Hero: Don’t you think I know that? But, I’m the only one with enough muscle attached to my arms to do it. Tell my wife I love her.

It’s not the fact that a character is willing to sacrifice himself or herself, that is important, in a story. It is the person whom the hero is willing to sacrifice himself too. I propose that it is the Sacrificee not the Sacrifer, that is important. In all those movies, Potter included, the hero is willing to die at the hands of the bad guy. You could almost say, that the villain is defined as the villain, because he requires the hero to die before him.

Bond: Do you expect me to talk?

Goldfinger: No, Mr. Bond. I expect you to die.

Boo, hissss. The fable of Jesus Christ, on the other hand, is unique in storytelling, in that, the hero sacrifices himself to the supposed good guy , the almighty – God himself (WTF). I think this says a lot about the Abrahamc religions, and why I do not support them. Doesn’t this odd fact cast God squarely as the guy wearing the black hat, wringing his hands and twirling his mustache, while giving out an evil “Wha, ha, ha” laugh? Am I the only one who thinks this is weird?

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