Scripture In Film

955 Words 4 Pages
While it is easy to criticize the new medium of film for lack of substance—Aichele and Walsh wrote that “one does not expect especially valuable insights from [film]—it is clear that audiences can learn from the morals and values taught in biblical movies CITATION (Screening Scripture p.viii). Parallel narrative techniques used by biblical filmmakers represent an excellent example of a novel format through which religious teachings could be conveyed to mass audiences; through direct, immersive comparison with their modern lives. The value of this medium should not be understated: “even if no movie has saved anyone’s soul, cinema can provide thought-provoking drama or spectacular entertainment, allowing audiences to visualize stories from the …show more content…
This is likely because filmmakers are influenced by forces beyond academic integrity; namely the demands of the box office to “mix in battle scenes, action sequences, and romantic subplots that did not exist in the original stories” CITATION (TBATH). Producers were free to use biblically themed novels and screenplays that were only loosely based on scripture. Additionally, stories of vice, “sexual adventure, and intrigue abound even in such ‘staid’ sources as the Hebrew Bible”—even though much of the Bible’s text is relatively dry and abstruse CITATION (SS p59). Thus, it is unsurprising that biblical stories that were appropriated by filmmakers had a tendency towards character-oriented, action-packed parables, such as Noah’s Ark, Adam and Eve, and David and …show more content…
While these producers usually come from non-academic backgrounds and have non-academic goals, their interpretations of the bible have a major influence on contemporary religious culture and understandings of the Bible. Naturally, the long-standing traditions of biblical cinema have given rise to several tropes and cinematic techniques, such as the use of epic scale and parallel subplots. These practices have promoted ideals of scriptural transcendence and righteous living in modern society. Additionally, cinematic depictions of women in biblical films have defined perceptions of gender roles in scripture, often through seductress characters and their relatively chaste foils. After decades of biblical film adaptation, a highly romanticized and often over-sexualized image of scripture has emerged in the world of cinema. These concepts of scripture, however inaccurate, have influenced—and will continue to influence—popular concepts of scripture for decades to

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