Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Reflections On Film Scenes- Lord of the Rings 1

There is so much said in just a few lines here. The reflection on the nature of sin: 'he hates and loves the ring, has he hates and loves himself.' The reflection on judgment, and pity. On intuition, and the meaning of life. "All we have to do is decide what to do with the time that is given to us." I'd put this towards the top of a list of greatest film scenes ever, and it is definitely one of the most Christological ever. The fact that both Gandalf and Frodo play Christ-figures in the film (as I pointed out in a recent post), makes the reflection on judgment and sin all that more poignant.

"It is a strange fate that we should suffer so much fear and doubt over so small a thing." Baromir represents humanity in general, at the mercy of the power of sin. Indeed sin is a small thing. Yet it afflicts us with fear and doubt and temptation. The look on Baromir's face here. The fear and doubt coupled by an almost aching longing. Baromir's entire character is summed up in that longing stare at the ring.

The hope and trust in Frodo by Gandalf here is what really stands out. Gandalf trusts in the power of vulnerability, the power of vulnerability to destroy coercive power, to destroy sin, and yet the power of evil cannot detect the greater power that resides within vulnerability itself. God was able to trick the devil because the devil knew nothing about the true power of God. "That we should try to destroy the ring has not entered their darkest dreams." The very idea that power would be put aside is beyond the ken of evil. And this ignorance is the key to evil's undoing.

The great King returns. He leaves nothing for himself, but gives fully for the good of others. Here Aragorn embodies his own Christ imagery. He is the one who can unite humanity, and he is the one who can forgive the sins of those in a kind of purgatory (can there be any doubt that the entire sub story of the men in the mountain hearkens back to classic Christianity, especially the Catholicism of Tolkien?) There are many more scenes I will be doing from LOTR over the next few weeks. There is just so much there. It is not for no reason that I created a Bible study based on the films.

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