Sunday, December 2, 2007

Amazing Grace

We recently watched two films, "Amazing Grace" and "I am David", both of which I enthusiastically recommend.

Amazing Grace tells the story of William Wilberforce's (portrayed by Ioan Gruffudd) relentless efforts to abolish the slave trade in England. The film is interesting and inspiring on several levels: one comes away with a better understanding of the historical period and its influences, the English political system and politics in general, the way in which God works in our lives, through our strengths and despite our weaknesses, and the beauty and triumph of lived Christian principles.

Because the film deals with the issue of slavery, some material may be too intense and troubling for young children. There are no graphic images, but former slaves/slavers do describe, in detail, the miserable conditions of life aboard ship.

The relationship between Wilberforce and Barbara Spooner is delightfully the sense of Cicero's "A friend is other self." One does not commonly find romance and friendship so beautifully blended in film. (Unhappily, the styles of the period allow us to see a little more of Barbara than we would like. Happily, Barbara has loads of lovely hair which cascades freely, making some amends for the shortage of fabric.)

The next time I sing, "Amazing Grace" it'll have a level of meaning and a kind of beauty it did not before....though it'll sound just as bad as it ever did. Watching good films does not improve musical ability.

I'll post on, "I am David" next.


Ana Braga-Henebry said...

I love the main actor--he starred in all of the Horatio Hornblower BBC films, based on the C.S. Forester novels. We loved those too!

Shelly said...

Love, love, love *I am David*. One we own.