Sunday, November 21, 2010

Why I Loved Evan Almighty

This is an old post that I wrote many, many moons ago on my xanga blog back when Evan Almighty first came out.  Several influential Christian leaders, who hadn't even seen the movie, were blogging their reasons why Christians shouldn't go see the movie.  I, in response, felt the need to inform my little corner of the xanga world (and anybody else who might stumble upon my blog) why the movie was actually worth watching.  I thought it deserved to be re-published here before I finally shut down that old blog:

Evan Almighty (Widescreen Edition)

I loved the way this movie portrayed God.  God was personal.  He was conversational.  He was not "the big guy in the sky" that many people believe him to be.  I loved at the end when Evan is doing the dance that his whole family teases him about; God is doing the dance with him and laughing.  I like the picture of God enjoying my silliness as I enjoy the life that He has blessed me with, because I believe that's what He truly does.

I loved many of the very pointed statements that are made about the character of God.  At one point he asks Joan (Lorelai Gilmore... probably more recognizable than her real name) something to the effect of: "When someone prays for courage, do you think God gives them courage, or does he give them a moment to be courageous? When someone prays for the family to be closer, does he sprinkle around happiness, or does he give them an opportunity to be closer?"  There is also a part where Evan doesn't understand why God is asking him to build an ark, and God tells him, "Everything I do, I do because I love you."  And then later when Evan is really struggling, he reminds himself of this.  There are several more.  Oh, my favorite one is when Evan says, "But this isn't a part of my plans!!" and God just absolutely cracks up laughing and says (through gasps, cause he's laughing so hard), "YOUR plan?!?!  HAHAHAHAHA!!"

I loved how it showed God getting his message to Evan.  God doesn't always work in the same ways, and I would say that it is rarely as blatant as presented in this movie, but I have had personal experiences where God gets his message across to me by "coincidences" that occur enough times that His direction in your life becomes inescapable.  And even more general than that, through these "coincidences" in Evan's life, the movie displays God's sovereignty over all things.  At the end of the movie, Evan expresses his amazement with how God orchestrated everything so perfectly.

I loved that they didn't try to act like this was a new flood, or that God had gone back on His promise in the Noah story, or that this was supposed to BE the Noah story.  It's very clear that none of those is the case.  It's hard to say much more about that without giving a major part of the story away, so I'll leave it at that.  It did, however, make real to me some of the reactions that Noah probably faced when building the ark.

I loved that this movie was HILARIOUS.  Seriously.  I laughed out loud more times than I can count, and I'm not one that generally laughs very much in movies.  And there's this one scene toward the end where they're in the boat and go over this waterfall and I literally grabbed both armrests and leaned way back and got that same weird feeling like when you get to the top of a big roller coaster and are about to go flying down a steep drop!  It was great!

I loved that it was clean and wholesome.  Period.

I loved that this was a "green" movie.  This is something Josh and I learned while researching it before it came out in theaters.  All the landscaping, lumber, windows and other reusable materials were donated to Habitat for Humanity.  All crew members were given bicycles by director Tom Shadyac to reduce car usage.  Learn more about that here:

One thing I didn't love was the movie's interpretation of the Noah story being all about love and not wrath.  I disagree with that.  However, I know that there are a lot of Christians out there who would agree with it and I'm not going to call them heretics just because of that one nonessential point.

So there's my review!

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