SPIRITUAL CONNECTIONS
 

This page was created on July 23, 2004
This page was last updated on July 23, 2004


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A SPIRITUAL WORD from david bruce

STORIES ARE ABOUT RELATIONSHIP
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SPIRITUAL THEMES

The importance of spirituality surprisingly was presented through a strong and likable character. We see Spooner’s grandmother, who loves her grandson with a passion. She is old-fashioned enough to still see marriage as a lasting relationship, not as something one jumps in and out of. She sees the value of a home-cooked meal with the family sitting down together to eat and enjoy each other's company. We also see scenes where she demonstrates she recognizes the power of prayer and Bible Study. She is a Christian portrayed in a positive role, and the audience seems to like her. She is the stabilizing force for Spooner, and it gradually becomes obvious that she must be the one who has developed the basic morality and focus on relationships illustrated by Spooner. I’ve got to mention this -- I also really appreciated that she was portrayed honestly, as someone who is not perfect. We see later in the movie that she is one who can give in to temptation, looking for the quick fix and the quick riches that so many do look for (for example, in things like sweepstakes, lotteries and contests). We see her shortcomings as well as her blessings, but we also see her willingness to go to God when she realizes that she has made mistakes. When she does this, when she prays for the needs of others as well as her own needs, we see that she is provided with a deliverer.
--Mikle Furches

ON THE IMPORTANT THINGS IN LIFE

The ability to focus attention on important things is a defining characteristic of intelligence.
Robert J. Shiller, Irrational Exuberance

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.
--Dale Carnegi

The most important things in life aren't things.
--Anthony J. D'Angelo, The College Blue Book

Men always talk about the most important things to perfect strangers. In the perfect stranger we perceive man himself; the image of a God is not disguised by resemblances to an uncle or doubts of wisdom of a mustache.
--G. K. Chesterton

The most valuable things in life are not measured in monetary terms. The really important things are not houses and lands, stocks and bonds, automobiles and real state, but friendships, trust, confidence, empathy, mercy, love and faith.
--Bertrand Russell V. Delong

The component of Robots, especially Sonny, (notice the reference to The Son), and, V.I.K.I. (The Master Brain for the Robots) being able to develop intelligence and have human attributes is rather enlightening. The concept of artificial intelligence is a fascinating subject and this movie portrays it well. One of the beautiful things about the way they do this is that the CGI (Computer Generated Images) is terrific. The character of Sonny, while CGI, is astonishing. His facial expressions are especially true to life, and the voice-over work by actor Alan Tudyk is nothing short of brilliant. You absolutely forget that you are watching CGI, and the work on this character's expressions combined with the voice of Tudyk is the best work I have seen. You actually care for and feel for the character on screen because you believe the character is a real Robot with real feelings. Without the belief that the character fully understands the concept of being both Human and Robot, the story would not work. But the directors have done their job, so you do believe it.

Without going into spoiler areas, another spiritual theme that is also relevant, especially for Christians, is the fact that the Christ figures in this movie, of which there are several, have attributes about them that make it obvious that they are representing Jesus Christ. The concept of a Savior needing to understand the importance of being part one thing and part another does not apply only to Sonny. The dual Christ figures in this movie both understand what it means to love a population enough to sacrifice for it. That sacrifice is another spiritual component specific to Christianity. There is willing sacrifice to the point of death, there is a resurrection sequence, there is love for others more than love for self -- shucks, there is even a specific reference to a Cross on a Hill. Those images cannot help but be identified as references specifically to Jesus Christ.

There are other spiritual references along the way.
We also see characters portrayed as enemies of good and desiring the destruction of humanity. One of the fun parts of this movie is that we don’t know exactly who the enemies are and who they aren’t. There is a mystery involved (another similarity to Asimov's stories), and the process of having to put the pieces of the puzzle together is actually quite fun and enjoyable.

--Mike Furches


 
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