Enter your email address to receive updates by email:

subscribe in a reader like my facebook page follow me on twitter Image Map
Podcast Message Line: 512-222-3389
Logos Catholic Bible Software

« Against the Falsely So-Called Gnostiticism | Main | On the Importance of Working »

July 11, 2008

Comments

Jason

C.S. Lewis didn't write the letters from the guardian angel because he didn't feel he could write with the level of holiness required... to paraphrase form the prologue "The aroma of Heaven would have to waft from every word placed on the page".

Though you could view The Great Divorce as C.S. Lewis' attempt to write such a novel. I enjoy that book even more than Screwtape.

--Jason

SDG

C.S. Lewis didn't write the letters from the guardian angel because he didn't feel he could write with the level of holiness required... to paraphrase form the prologue "The aroma of Heaven would have to waft from every word placed on the page".

Though you could view The Great Divorce as C.S. Lewis' attempt to write such a novel. I enjoy that book even more than Screwtape.

Yes, that's exactly what I said in my article. :‑) (I even offered The Great Divorce as a counterpoint.) The question here was posed as a teaser.

Agellius

Very interesting review. But one thing you seem not to have commented on: Was it a good movie? : )

SDG

Very interesting review. But one thing you seem not to have commented on: Was it a good movie? : )

Um, which movie?

If you mean Hellboy II, while my article doesn't discuss the merits or demerits of the film, my review does. They're two separate pieces.

If you mean Monsieur Vincent, then you're being funny. Sorry for spoiling the joke. :‑)

David B.

Great. Another movie I have to see. (Monsieur Vincent, that is). ;-)

On the other topic, I do hope that Chris Nolan hasn't fallen into the same trap others have and become unable to portray the good guys as strong in their goodness as the enemy is in his wickedness.

SDG

Great. Another movie I have to see. (Monsieur Vincent, that is). ;-)

You will so thank me. I guarantee it.

On the other topic, I do hope that Chris Nolan hasn't fallen into the same trap others have and become unable to portray the good guys as strong in their goodness as the enemy is in his wickedness.

Yes indeedy, that is my concern as well, particularly after catching another really dark Nolan film, The Prestige, which I see I described as "a tightly wound Möbius strip, with a dark side that just keeps going, and has no other side."

That said, I'm willing to give Nolan some space, to allow Batman to be overwhelmed and outgunned, to fail more than he succeeds. This is the second movie, and it's allowed to be darker than the first.

What I think I need to see happen after that is for Batman to be shaped by the experience, to rise to the occasion if only at the very end, and become something more for the next film.

I'll let you know...

David B.

SDG,

What I think I need to see happen after that is for Batman to be shaped by the experience, to rise to the occasion if only at the very end, and become something more for the next film.

Eggactly!

Edward

SDG,

Congratulations on getting a review quote on a DVD cover! Is this your first?

vector

I followed the link to your article on Hellboy. I noticed this comment in the article:

"Hellboy may be a walking oxymoron, a “good demon”… but he’s the singular exception to the rule .... (The comics apparently establish, though the movie doesn’t, that Hellboy is a devout Catholic.)"

I must have too much time on my hands to even ponder this, but: what would be the point of "a good demon" being a devout Catholic?

Could a demon make it to heaven, assuming he believes in Christ, rejects Satan, and repents of evil?

If I understand correctly, Hellboy is originally from Hell.

I was under the impression that once you are in Hell, you have lost all chance of Heaven.

If that is the case, what would be the point of being a Catholic, since the purpose of the Church is to serve as a vehicle to help folks get to Heaven?

There seems to me to be several layers of paradox here. Am I just overthinking all this?

Can anyone unpack my confusion?

Mary

I must have too much time on my hands to even ponder this, but: what would be the point of "a good demon" being a devout Catholic?

Could a demon make it to heaven, assuming he believes in Christ, rejects Satan, and repents of evil?

Yes.

Ever hear the saying "The gates of Hell are locked from the inside"?

In Christian theology, the damned and the saved have made their choice and will not unmake it. Perhaps because they are no longer related to time in the same way we the still living are.

If, fictionally, you allow the damned and the saved to make other choices, you have departed from Christian theology and can logically deduce the other changes from them.

Whether such a departure is healthy is another kettle of fish.

SDG

Congratulations on getting a review quote on a DVD cover! Is this your first?

Thanks! It's technically not the first time -- I was quoted last year in a back-cover blurb on Ignatius Press's DVD release of The Miracle of St. Therese.

Of course, I know the people at IP, so that feels a little all-in-the-family to get too excited about. Plus, as much as I value the movie, it's not much of a DVD release (bare-bones edition of the English dub with picture quality comparable to the out-of-print VHS).

As far as I know, the Lionsgate Monsieur Vincent DVD blurb is the first time I've been quoted on a DVD jacket from a mainstream entertainment company, so yeah, that's kind of exciting.

I followed the link to your article on Hellboy. I noticed this comment in the article:

"Hellboy may be a walking oxymoron, a “good demon”… but he’s the singular exception to the rule .... (The comics apparently establish, though the movie doesn’t, that Hellboy is a devout Catholic.)"

I must have too much time on my hands to even ponder this, but: what would be the point of "a good demon" being a devout Catholic?

Well, I haven't read the comics myself, but as I understand it, the comics portray Hellboy as "half demon" and "half human," having had a human mother. Note that Hellboy was never an unfallen angel, so he never chose to rebel against God, as real demons have.

In reality, of course, there is no such thing as a demon who was never an unfallen angel, nor do demons reproduce either with one another or with humans. In fictional worlds, though, you can have fictional rules (e.g., human souls becoming angels and earning wings as per It's a Wonderful Life; "good witches" as per The Wizard of Oz, etc.).

I don't know whether the comics grapple with the question of whether Hellboy has a "soul," or whether in this context "being a devout Catholic" means that Hellboy was actually baptized and receives the sacraments, or only entails some sort of allegiance to God and to the Church, "rejecting Satan and his seductions," etc. FWIW, in my review of the first film I did ding it for having the characters ignore the question of Hellboy's redeemability.

FWIW, if we imagine that the world were so ordered that demons could beget offspring demons who were never unfallen angels and never chose to oppose God, and if these creatures could repent of evil, turn against Satan and seek to serve God, and especially if such creatures could be partly human, then it would certainly seem to me fitting that they should be able to be redeemed.

If, fictionally, you allow the damned and the saved to make other choices, you have departed from Christian theology and can logically deduce the other changes from them.

Whether such a departure is healthy is another kettle of fish.

Agreed. Hellboy for me represents a grey area that I'm not comfortable with but can't really condemn either. I can see a credible case either way.

David B.

Plus, as much as I value the movie, it's not much of a DVD release

Whoa! I bet the folks over at IP want to put that on the back cover of the second edition! ;-)


Just Kidding.

SDG

Whoa! I bet the folks over at IP want to put that on the back cover of the second edition! ;-)

I've already said as much in my Register "DVD Picks" column as well as the "DVD Notes" of my review, which calls the DVD's limitations "disappointing." I'm not spilling any secrets, here. :‑)

Paul Hoffer

Technically, Hellboy is not a demon. He is the offspring between Satan and a human woman. That would make him a Nephilim (Genesis).

Both the comics and the movie (in the subtext) show that he is a practicing Catholic. Whether that is theologically sound or not, I do not know, but his character shows a reverence for life, a hatred of evil, and a capacity for sacrificing for others. That is more than can be said for a lot of characters in movies that play the "hero".

Mary
FWIW, if we imagine that the world were so ordered that demons could beget offspring demons who were never unfallen angels and never chose to oppose God, and if these creatures could repent of evil, turn against Satan and seek to serve God, and especially if such creatures could be partly human, then it would certainly seem to me fitting that they should be able to be redeemed.

You can judge a tree by its fruit.

Paul Hoffer

Hi Mary, nature vs. nurture? It was in the nature of Hellboy to be evil and bring about the end of the world (his stone hand was supposed to be the key to loose a monster to destroy the earth), but because he was nutured by a devout and loving man, he turned out good (that a serving of pancakes-you have to read the story).

jt82

Is the DVD dubbed into english or is it just subtitles?

Craig

Re your article about Heaven, Hell and Hollywood, I am reminded of Touched by an Angel. Admittedly a TV series and not a movie, but noteworthy in the prominence of its angels and the only occasional role given to the Fallen.

jhonsajiro@misena.edu.co

einshdgtushdg edg shedg therdg einshdgteeshdg eidgteeshdg meefreinshdg einshdg oweedg sheiveedg meieey meedg enshdg eidgweiodgteesheidg tenshdg permenshdg eenshdg ckeidg peirdg beedg teeshdg einshdg sheieenshdg feiyberdg forpleeshdg eenshdg thoshdg teishdg teiodgrenshdg shenshdg queewdg

David B.

Wow SDG!!!

I just saw your review of THE DARK KNIGHT! Four stars, A+!?! Oh, yeah!
Strange as it may seem, in spite of the many positive reviews it has received, I was on pins and needles until you gave your thoughts. whew. :-)

Mary

No, Paul, I mean that if a "demon" acted good, we could judge him according to his actions.

Paul Hoffer

Hi Mary, Sorry! I read something into your comments that wasn't there. For some reason, your premise, which I fully agree with by the way did not register.

Sherri Irvin

Movies are movies. Watch em or don't watch em. I don't watch em. They just take up my time and fill my head with junk. Even the funny ones. Although I really liked Caddyshack (long time ago) and some others like that. Unfortunately I have the sense of humor of a 12 year old but I'm 51. But I must say they go in and out of my head very quickly. The movie I most found interesting was Dr. Zhivago. He was such a normal man in a great war trying to be good but ultimately did evil and died. He was tempted, loved a women he shouldn't have, been taken advantage of, did good deeds, tried to redeem himself and then died. That is so human it is heartbreaking. Doesn't any one of us identify with at least one of his trials?

LEWISisCatholic

download Mere Christianity audiobook here http://www.box.net/shared/dpqaxdsgdf
this is divided into chapters so very convieniant

The comments to this entry are closed.

January 2012

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31