Thursday, February 22 2024

The Chosen: a series of surprises

It’s captivated young people (and so many others!) around the world,
leaving countless fans saying, “I grew closer to the Christian faith thanks
to this series. It put a face to Jesus’ name.”

We are referring to The Chosen tv series (produced by
angelstudios.com) – a series broadcast only via streaming – about Jesus of
Nazareth. The set design is outstanding, the dialogues compelling, and the
language cinematic rather than homiletic. It has been particularly
successful in reaching younger viewers, who have appreciated it so much
that not only the first but also the second season was broadcast around the
world for free—thanks to the donations of its loyal fanbase, ultimately
bringing us hope in the midst of a pandemic.

The Chosen
introduces us to the life of Jesus (played by Jonathan Roumie), inspired
directly from the Gospels.

The app developed by VidAngel has been downloaded more than 5 million times
on Google Play. On YouTube and Facebook, the first season, released in
2019, has accumulated more than 9 million views, and the platform, as a
whole, has reached something like 50 million views.

The peculiarity of the series is that, beyond the apologetic purpose (those
who came up with it most definitely are trying to evangelize) the story
turns out to be exciting, intriguing, moving, and entertaining even for a
“further away” audience. We recommend this show for all those who wish to
know more about Jesus, in light of this upcoming holiday that celebrates
his birth.


The Grinch (made in 2000, directed by Ron Howard): an animated movie
for children and adults

The Grinch is a hairy creature who’s sulky and introverted. He lives with
his dog, Max, above the city of Whoville, in a cave.

Being a sad, lonely guy, the Grinch hates Christmas. He can’t stand the
cheerful spirit, the feeling of brotherhood, togetherness, and, above all,
the Christmas music.

He’s put up with it all for fifty-three years, but now he can’t stand it
anymore, and he crafts a plan to steal Christmas from the Whos. He
wants to steal all the presents, the decorations and, most of all, their
happiness.

They must stop singing, once and for all!

So, he drafts a detailed plan.

Riding his dog Max, who is disguised as a reindeer, he pretends to be Santa
Claus. But instead of delivering gifts, he’ll be taking them. When
everything seems to be going his way and the evil mission is almost over, a
little six-year-old girl, Cindy Lou Who, gets in the way of his plans. She
will not only succeed in bringing Christmas back to her village, but also
in breaking the Grinch’s small and hardened heart, making it grow three
sizes larger—ultimately turning the Grinch good again…


War Room (made in 2015 by Alex and Stephen Kendrick): all about
discovering forgiveness in marriage

Elizabeth is a real estate agent; Tony, a pharmaceutical salesman. They are
married with a 10-year-old daughter, but their marriage has come to an end.
Both are constantly on the warpath against one another. Proud and always
letting their own personal beliefs and needs get in the way, they don’t
know how to understand each other.

Clara, a kind, elderly woman of deep and sincere faith, meets Elizabeth
during a business appointment and helps her to understand that she and her
husband are fighting the “wrong battle.”

Clara manages to establish a trustful relationship with Elizabeth and, in
one of their meetings, offers her some advice. The first – and most
important – is to start praying for Tony instead of giving him a hard time.

During their most difficult trial (when Elizabeth’s friend warns her that
her husband is about to cheat on her), she begins “to draw her weapons,” as
the elderly woman suggests. She decides to trust God with all her heart.
Weeping, she confidently asks the Lord to transform Tony’s heart so that he
can become the best version of himself.

After much resistance, she lets go of her resentment, responds to her
husband’s indifference, cynicism, and anger toward her with prayer for him.
She also showed him respect in a way she hadn’t for quite some time.

Elizabeth opens herself up to forgiveness, having overcome the pride that
led her to hold it all against him and demand “justice.”

When Elizabeth changes her attitude and humbly accepts her husband as he
is, that is the moment when miracles begin to happen in their marriage and
family. Even the husband, feeling unconditionally loved, stops to reflect
and questions himself. He eventually will feel called to change.

It’s a movie to watch as a couple, to recognize how forgiveness – one of
the values that has always been linked to Christmas – can rebuild bonds
where before was solely brokenness.

The film’s directors are two evangelical Christians who are committed to
promoting stories based on the Christian faith. War Room was not
as successful as its predecessors Fireproof and Facing the Giants, but it is still an inspiring film.

And do you have any movies to suggest for the Christmas season?

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