Sunday, December 31, 2006


For whatever reason, there seem to be some scenes in movies that just get to me. Like the scene in "V for Vendetta" when they show Valerie's story. Or the closing scene in "A Perfect World."

Tonight, that scene was in the movie "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" -- when Cedric's father finds his son's dead body on the field and weeps "My son! My son!" I remarked to my wife as I choked up with emotion just how different it seems to watch that scene as a parent. How much easier it was to keep a certain emotional distance from such a display before I had children.

One of the reasons that I love watching movies is that they have this tendency to get me thinking. In this case, about how the death of this fictional character moved me...and yet there are all of these brutal deaths occurring all over the world. Not fictional ones we can rationalize and forget about. Real deaths. Fathers, Mothers, Sons, Daughters. People with names. People with just as much a right to live as any of us. Killed by the brutal realities of Darfur, of Iraq, of poverty and injustice worldwide.

Where are their movies, I wonder? What stories are being told of them beyond a recitation of cold statistics on the evening news?

2006 certainly had much that was good in it. Yet looking back at it, it is hard not to weep, to shake your head and pray to God that 2007 finds an end to all this bloodshed, all of this unnecessary violence. I pray that 2007 will find peace spreading, heart to heart, family to family, community to community, nation to nation.

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