Monday, April 12, 2010

Clash of the Titans

I wasn't going to do it, but I did it. I went to see Clash of the Titans today. In 3-D, no less.

Like I said on my Facebook status update, it was ridiculously fun. Ridiculous because of the over-the-top special effects and the irony of heavy hitters like Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes having major roles. But also fun because of crazy mythological creatures like Medusa, scorpions, and witches, and the death-defying antics of our hero, Perseus (played by Sam Worthington of Avatar fame).

Actually there's a lot of gospel application in this movie. Perseus is a demigod - both god and man. He is ridiculed, rejected, scorned, and nearly killed by the very people he ends up saving. Perseus has to travel to the underworld to engage evil in hand-to-hand combat. Hades (played by Fiennes) is a horrible, self-centered, deceptive being intent on the destruction of humankind. Zeus (Neeson), the father of Perseus, turns out to be a beneficent (if somewhat naive) god who has the best interest of human beings in mind.

What particularly stood out to me is the way the movie illustrated man's stubborn attempt to live independently of God. The citizens of Argos, early on in the movie, wanted to stop living as though they needed help from the gods. Andromeda, princess of Argos, rebuked her parents and townspeople and called them to honor their creator. But she was largely ignored. The citizens of Argos said they were tired of being thankful. The gods had let them down too many times, so from now on they were going to rely on themselves.

Romans 1: 21 says that "although [human beings] knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened." How ironic and sad that we puny little mortals, whose every breath is an unmerited gift from God, think that we don't need God. Like Zeus in Clash of the Titans, God has powerful ways of showing us our weakness. Every now and then he raises up a Kraken to humble us and prove how dependent upon him we really are.

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