Recently I recieved a Bust Buy gift card and naturally, I didn't want to wait to use it until I needed something. I had my eye on the Superman DVD box set for some time, so I got it. I have had the Superman theme stuck in my head ever since. I remember watching the movies with my Dad when I was quite young. If anyone has seen Superman II then you can appreciate my early memories of trying to crush the hand of my Dad when he would lower his voice and say "Kneel before Zod!" For some reason, having loved the movies as a child allows me to look past the many flaws and overall cheesy factor as an adult.
Superman: The Movie features the origin of the man of steel. When Jor-el's planet is in danger of being destroyed he sends his only son to Earth, saying: "They can be a great people, Kal-El — they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way." (By the way, Marlon Brando played Superman's father, and was paid a record 3.7 million dollars for two weeks of work....I even watched the special features, I digress.)
But wow, what a great quote! Immediately my mind started piecing the metaphore together between Superman and the story of Christ. The whole giving your only son for the sake of humans thing, the fact that Superman is later alienated because he is different, Superman coming to the rescue of a people he cares for, etc. I realized I was getting carried away and it might be a little silly to try and fish for metaphores in movies. I don't really like those books like: "Walking with Frodo: A Devotional Guide through the Lord of the Rings."
But then on the special features section it showed some interviews of the writers and one of them mentioned the many parellels of Superman to the story of Jesus Christ. Suddenly I didn't feel I was superimposing the story of our savior upon things I saw in a silly movie.
But the more I thought about it, I don't think it's a bad idea at all to use film to help illustrate the story of Christ. After all, Jesus talked in parables that were demonstrative of a principal he was trying to make clear. He was relating aspects of people or objects in his parables to the relationship between God and his people.
So is there anything wrong with relating stories that we are surrounded by to a faith we are trying to follow? Nope. If people want to read "Walking with Frodo" and if it helps point them to God then I should not be so critical.
So I will leave you once again with a quote that helped reveal a bit of truth to me, a truth I found while watching a 29 year old movie:
"They can be a great people — they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way."
Well, we have the light and must now go out and be the light.
*Que Superman theme song*