"laestadian, apostolic, gay, lgbtq, ex-oalc, ex-llc, llc, oalc, bunner" LEARNING TO LIVE FREE: Favorite Movies?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Favorite Movies?

From a friend in Finland:
I was asked to start a thread about favorite movies, so let's talk about favorite movies then! :) I like the Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar. In fact I happened to see his latest movie "Volver" last Saturday. I maybe don't agree with all of his opinions, he seems to have an axe to grind with the Catholic church, which I don't have, and he seems to have a rather negative view on men (although he's male himself), but he takes up difficult themes in his movies and opens a view to the life of people you don't normally meet. For example, I can't remember one single movie of him that didn't have any prostitutes in it.
In general, I tend to like historical movies, especially WWII movies, or any movies that handle about human tragedies. I'm not interested in war as such, but rather on its impact on human lives and human fates.
When talking about movies on this site, it maybe should be mentioned that the world's first movie made by Laestadians was released in 2005 when a group of young people from the Finnish OALC equivalent decided to make a movie with a medieval setting and a Christian message. In my opinion, it turned out pretty well, considering it was done by amateur forces. The reactions among the Laestadians varied a lot, some condemned it and demanded repentance from those involved while other were very positive. It was shown on a few occasions in some small movie theaters and later a dvd was released (with Swedish and English subtitles). The movie has its own site (in Finnish): http://www.kaksivaltakuntaa.fi


  1. I've only been to the movie theater a two times: once to Pirates of the Caribbean and once to see the Passion of the Christ. The first was pretty much what I'd expect from a summer movie. The second was overwrought and boring: Gibson's weirdness was featured more than the Christian message.

    Most of the movies I've seen have been on DVD. Historical movies are my favorite as well. Black Robe was captivating, if violent.

  2. lefty laestadian9/19/2006 08:31:00 AM

    Some favorite movies that I've seen with a Finnish/laestadian theme include:

    Popular Music from Vittula--read the book and saw it at the Minneapolis International film festival 2005. As good as the book, but alas, cannot find anywhere on DVD.

    Man Without a Past--my 12 year old son's favorite Finnish movie. Aki Kaurismaki. Available at Amazon.com.

    Mother of Mine--tells a story of a Finnish boy evacuated to Sweden during the Winter war years. A real tear jerker. In Finnish and Swedish subtitles. Saw originally at the 2006 Minneapolis film fest, but is available on the Net in DVD.

    Pathfinder--the only full length movie in the Saami language. A bit bloody but a compelling story nonetheless. The characters really looked like many of the laestadians I know, which really brought home our Saami ancestral roots to me. Fascinating. In English subtitles.

  3. Many Trails Home9/19/2006 06:01:00 PM

    My thanks to "lefty laestadian;" will order Man Without a Past - heard that one recommended before. I ordered Pathfinder from Amazon; it was described as the Saami movie, and I got one about NY Indians instead.

    My personal favorite, set in Denmark with English subtitles and a French heroine, is Babette's Feast: hope and upliftment in the face of loss.

    My favorite comedy is One Night on Earth, which features taxi drivers in 5 locations (LA, NY, Paris, Rome, and Helsinki) all on the same night. I saw it on TV years ago - all except the Rome segment; why will be obvious if you see it - was able to track it down and got a copy. It is SOOOO funny; priceless, all 5 segments.

    My other favorite comedy is A New Leaf with a young Elaine May (who wrote and directed it) and starring a young Walter Matthau. He is a hopelessly charming dilettante who goes thru his inheritance and then woos and marries Elaine May, a very frumpy, klutzy botanist who is also a wealthy heiress, blatantly for her money. Hadda get my own copy of that one also.

    Has anyone seen Under a Shipwrecked Moon by Antero Alli, a Finn living in SF? I read about it on another website but could not find it anywhere.

    Looking forward to everyone's recommendations. MTH

  4. I watch most of the movies that I see at home using Netflix… as I can stop and start when I wish and the popcorn is a bargain. As for favorites??? I enjoy movies that are compelling and have a good story that is well told. I have always been a Woody Allen fan and most of his movies save a couple are entertaining and fun although I have a bit of a time with him marrying his adopted daughter.

    This year the only movie I have seen that merits a five is “My Architect: A Son’s Journey”. This documentary has some of the best personal interviews that I have seen on film. Some fun movies are “Perfect Crime”, (a Spanish caper movie) and “Tortilla Soup” (for anyone that has daughters and loves to cook). Another foreign film worth mentioning is “Warm Water Under a Red Bridge” and should be watched for its weirdness. “How to Draw a Bunny”, a documentary also has value as well as “American Splendor” (not a documentary but based on a real character in every sense of the word). In the dramatic genre with a twist I suggest “The Last Seduction” and “The Italian Job”.

    If I were pushed to the wall to name one favorite I would pick “Dr. Zhivago” from long ago but I must admit that I also love gangster movies with “The Wiseguys” heading the list.

    I agree with MTH about "The New Leaf"

  5. "Winter war years"????

    The Winter war lasted for 105 days.

    Veteran H. Finn

  6. My favorite is Man Without a Past. It loses a lot in translation, but I'd still recommend it to any of this blog's readers. Made with far better taste than an average Hollywood production.

    Kaksi valtakuntaa was an amateur movie project, kinda like Star Wreck - In the Pirkinning.

  7. Ummmmm. H Finn there was not only the Winter War but the Continuation War...if I know my Finnish history correctly.

  8. I really like movies! (Is that because as a child I wasn't allowed to go to them? Hmmmm...)

    I go to movies for different reasons at different times. If I just need to forget life for a couple of hours and just laugh I will go and watch lighthearted comedies, or pure "guy" movies that have lousy acting, cornpone jokes, and a plot that a six year old can figure out -- but they're entertaining! I stopped trying to attend movies because they were considered to be examples of art or have a strong political or social message. Movies by and large are fiction, and what is portrayed is going to show the director's view anyway, so I give little credence to their real "value" beyond entertainment. I go to movies with my wife that often fall into the "chick flic" category and while I secretly enjoy some of them, I make sure that I get to my share of ones with high body count to compensate.

    My favorite movie of all time is still Fiddler on the Roof. I swear I have gone through most of the same emotions as Tevye at one time or another, and I never get tired of watching it.

    If you want to see a genuine feel good movie, rent the original "Goodbye Mr Chips". It won virtually all of the academy awards back in 1939, and deservedly so.

    I do have an affinity to old movies -- the b&w stuff that featured Bogart in particular but also Henry Ford in his early years, Katherine Hepburn (who I think I was in love with even though her politics were far enough left to satisfy most of the readers here), Cagney and the rest. In those movies, actors actually acted and didn't just rely on crude dialogue and special effects to carry the day.

    On a Finnish bent, I rented "Leningrad Cowboys come to America" or some such title and laughed myself sick! It had a dumb plot, lousy acting, and I thought it was hilarious. I've picked up a couple of movies about the Winter War that I found compelling in their message -- and appreciate the fact that the dialogue was intelligent and focused on the relationships rather than the spectacular.

    Historical movies? Love 'em! Unfortunately too many of them only grind the director's axe with the message they deliver, or they head off into the ridiculous and try to wrap it in history. I saw Titanic and was really excited because I had always been interested in that event. By the time DeCaprio and Winslet had dove into the bowels of the ship for the umpteenth time I was wishing I could just go and drown myself! Pearl Harbor turned out to be the same garbage...

  9. My favorite movies are Chick Flicks: Like Water for Chocolate, Amalie, Real Women Have Curves. My husband and I see a lot of movies (his favorite pastime) and enjoy comedies, but good ones are hard to come by. We both loved Little Miss Sunshine. He, of course, likes action films and occasionally manages to drag me to see one. I hate blood-and-guts, though; may be the mother part of me that doesn't like violence, gratuitous or otherwise.

  10. The Sound of Music is my favorite.
    I too, like historical movies, and the black and white ones; Sabrina is also a favorite (the new and old version). I like The Fiddler on the Roof, the Shirley Temple movies; Pollyanna and Little Princess, The Anne of Green Gables series. I don't care for all of Mel Gibson's but I did like We Were Soldiers, Braveheart,and Patriot. I also enjoy clean comedies.

  11. LLLreader sez: My favorite movie of all time was To Kill a Mockingbird with Gregory Peck. No one has a voice like his. God's peace to you Free2be.

  12. As far as Finnish-themed movies go...I saw the documentary, "Fire & Ice," a week or two ago. It's about the Winter War, and is really well done. I've always been curious (and a little confused) about the various wars in Finland...and just how the Winter War led to Finland's position during World War II. This documentary fills in some of the blanks. Plus, it makes you proud of that good ol' Finnish sisu. I recommend it.

  13. LLL Reader, thank you for your care. I feel like a year has passed in the last 2 weeks. I've tried to write a few times but couldn't get any traction . . . that will change soon, no doubt.

    RE movies, recently my husband and I saw the US release of a 1969 French movie called "Army of Shadows," a timely and unsettling take on civilian morality during occupation. Emotionally complex, beautifully-acted, suspenseful, entertaining. Its occasional violence is implied, and all the more terrifying.

  14. Woman getting educated. How not LLL is that? Anyway, in my marriage and family class, I have to write a long self perspective examining my family. And it must be my family of origin. Isn't that a hoot! I never did go for counseling after leaving the FALC. Maybe after writing this paper and re-examining so much buried and ignored "stuff" I will end up in the chair. I guess growth always has a cost.
    Soooo on that note, no time for movies but one I can watch many times over is Benny & Joon.

  15. Now I'm thinking too much. I must say that most of the "junk" in my head didn't come from my immediate family but from the culture I was raised in. A lot of the self- righteous and prejudice comments I heard growing up were actually made by members of my extended family. I really didn't hear them in my home. But I guess I feel that when you grow up in an Apostolic church, you are really influenced by the membership at large as well as in your home.

  16. LLLreader: Oh yes, I agree. Anyone would have the right to rebuke you--and your immediate family wouldn't speak up for fear of being criticized too.

  17. Which ones of you have gone to the Laestadian Lutheran Church. I just found this website like 2 hours ago and have been reading, wow, fascinating. I even thought a while back wouldn't it be great to have an online support group for former Laestadian members, and I was just searching Lars Levi Laestadius and found this website. My experiences have been very similar to all the blogs I have read. I would recommend anyone to this website if they leave the church. IF they even know its out there because of course if any church members hear of it, they will not direct you to this support. They don't support you at all in your faith.

  18. LLLreader sez: I was OALC--and I think a Lot of others were too. Glad you arrived here!

  19. I saw "Brokeback Mountain" recently and I thought it was a great film as far as showing what homosexual people have had to deal with in America's past.

  20. Do you think that they are in a cult? Has anyone done any research on this? I would be interested in learning more.

  21. I think some of the Laestadian based splits are becoming cult-like and will continue to have more resemblences to cults in the future.

  22. It is hard to say its a cult, because they don't worship a leader, they do worship god. And they are not evil people, but warm and loving for the most part.But they have alot of characteristics of one like leaving is hard because you can't have your friends anymore, they claim persecution, they have strict rules about dress and behavior, they say they are Gods only special people, they have the "true" christian faith, I've been told many times not to think with my carnal mind, just accept and belief as it is God's will.
    I just pray for them every day that they may open their eyes and see it as we do. But most of them probably never will, it is so ingrained in their heads that there is only one way, so why search another.

  23. To gain an excellent understanding of cults and their mechanisms see www.orange-papers.org and click on "The Cult Test Questions" link.

  24. Hmm, interesting. They don't have all the characteristics, but do have several. Does anyone know of some great bible passages that state you can pray and ask the lord for forgiveness. I know it was stressed when I was in their church that you need to confess your sins to one another, and not directly to God. I believe I can also ask God, just looking for some good bible passages to support that. Thanks!

  25. Faith; here is one good bible passage. (John)

    20:21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
    20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:
    20:23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

    It would also be good idea to read what Martin Luther writes about confessing ones sins.("The Large Catechism") I'll post when I find the best part of that.

    H. Finn

  26. Many Trails Home10/12/2006 05:19:00 PM

    H. Finn, this is the "Keys to the Kingdom" passage on which the whole asking-forgiveness ritual in the OALC is based. But having pondered it at some length, I think there has got to be more than one interpretation. If you take it literally, and we (or the "true believers") are the "ye" that are mentioned, then mere humans have the right to "retain" sins for all eternity. So what if somebody decides to "retain" another person's sin? Does that mean the sinner goes to hell forever, unforgiven, based on another human's say-so? Sounds like rubbish to me. But if forgiveness and forgiveness-refusal are rights and responsibilities delegated to us humans, then the one is of no value without the other. In other words, if we have to always forgive, then what is the value of forgiving if we have no choice not to forgive? So therefore, we have to have the right to "retain."
    Based on this "logic exercise," I have decided this passage is faulty and prefer to go instead to the Lord's Prayer: "Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us." No mechanism specified. Just ask, and make sure we hold up our end.
    Many blessings to you all. MTH

  27. MTH, the engineer in me really likes that logic! Thank you for the gift!

  28. The Ministry of the Keys and Confession (by Martin Luther)

    As the head of the family should teach them in the simplest way to those in his household.


    First: What is the use of the Keys?
    The use of the Keys is that special power and right which Christ gave to his church on earth, to forgive the sins of penitent sinners but to refuse forgiveness to the impenitent as long as they do not repent.
    Where is this written?
    The holy Evangelist John writes in chapter 20, "Jesus breathed on his disciples and said, 'Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven."


    Second: How does a Christian congregation use the Keys?
    A Christian congregation with its called servant of Christ uses the Keys in accordance with Christ's command by forgiving those who repent of their sin and are willing to amend, and by excluding from the congregation those who are plainly impenitent that they may repent. I believe that, when this is done, it is as valid and certain in heaven also, as if Christ, our dear Lord, dealt with us himself.
    Where is this written?
    Jesus says in Matthew, chapter 1 8, "Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."


    First: What is Confession?

    Confession has two parts. The one is that we confess our sins; the other, that we receive absolution or forgiveness from the pastor* as from God himself, not doubting but firmly believing that our sins are thus forgiven before God in heaven.
    Second: What sins should we confess?
    Before God we should plead guilty of all sins, even those we are not aware of, as we do in the Lord's Prayer. But before the pastor we should confess only those sins which we know and feel in our hearts.
    Third: How can we recognize these sins?
    Consider your place in life according to the Ten Commandments. Are you a father, mother, son, daughter, employer or employee? Have you been disobedient, unfaithful, or lazy? Have you hurt anyone by word or deed? Have you been dishonest, careless, wasteful, or done other wrong?
    Fourth: How will the pastor assure a penitent sinner of forgiveness?
    He will say, "By the authority of Christ, I forgive you your sins in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen."

    *The German term is best translated as 'confessor," that is, the person who hears the confession.

    (This is from Luthers Small Catechis. The idea is even more clearly explained in Luthers Large Catechis.)

    Its true that many laestadians these days do believe in the same way as Martin Luther believed in his time.

    H. Finn

  29. "The use of the Keys is that special power and right which Christ gave to his church on earth, to forgive the sins of penitent sinners ..."
    Sound like to me, from the sentence below that the forgiveness is coming from the pastor.
    I say that forgiveness come from God and one only needed to go to God and repent and ask for forgiveness.
    Is that forgiveness coming from man(the pastor or memeber of God's chosen church) or God?

  30. "Is that forgiveness coming from man or God?"

    Here is Luther´s answer to this question.

    (Theo, please translate this. Tätä ei löydy englanniksi. Iso katekismus, viidennen osan loppu. puuttuu engl. käänöksistä)

    H. F.

    Tätä ripin lajia ei ole meille annettu käskynä, kuten nuo kaksi edellistä, vaan se on annettu vapaasti käytettäväksi, sen mukaan kuin itse kukin sitä hädässään tarvitsee. Tämä on peräisin siitä säätämyksestä, jolla Kristus itse pani päästösanan kristittyjen suuhun ja käski vapauttaa meidät synneistä. Missä ikinä on syntinsä tunteva ja lohdutusta ikävöivä sydän, se saa lujan turvapaikan, kun se löytää Jumalan sanan ja kuulee, että Jumala itse ihmisen suulla päästää hänet synneistä ja julistaa vapaaksi.

  31. I think that when Christ breathed the Holy Spirit into the disciples, he was giving them power to proclaim that sins are forgiven in his name, through the Holy Spirit. Not mans power himself. I think maybe it means that if we want to actually "hear" the words, then that is a way if we feel more comfort in that. But I also feel I can pray to God and he forgives me as well. I don't think there is only just the one way, you can do both. Does this make sense? There is one bible passage in 2 Chronicles 7:14 when the lord appeared before Solomen. He said,"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways: then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sins, and will heal their land". Or 1 John 1 vs. 9 " If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all righteousness". It doesn't say confess to a man or pastor, I believe we can confess to God. Those are just a couple passages I have found. It was just so drilled into our head that only man could forgive sins, and not any man, it had to be a Laestadian member.

  32. And obviously we would want to forgive each other for sins we have done to one another.

  33. The belief at the FALC is the a "Christian" can forgive sin. And you need to go a "Christian" to hear the words, "Belief all you sin forgiven..." and then your sins are forgiven.
    The problem with that is the poor person who dies and hasn't had their sins forgiven a mere minute before death.
    BTW, I no longer go the the FALC.

  34. H Finn, it's included in some English translations. My aunt and uncle were kind enough to give me Luther's Large Catechism (in English) for my confirmation and it's got that part. I've seen also some Finnish translations of Luther's Large Catechism that don't have the part that deals with confession. I don't know why and when they started leaving it out. Maybe when confession became more uncommon in the Lutheran church, so they deemed it unnecessary or uncomfortable? Anyway, here's your quote from Luther's Large Catechism in English:

    "This type of confession is not included in the commandment like the other two but is left to everyone to use whenever he needs it. Thus by divine ordinance Christ himself has entrusted absolution to his Christian church and commanded us to absolve one another from sins. So if there is a heart that feels its sin and desires consolation, it has here a sure refuge when it hears in God's Word that through a man God looses and absolves him from his sins."

  35. For you who didn't understand H. Finn's post in Finnish, the quote above is from the Sixth part of Luther's Large Catechism, some catechisms like mine (translated by Rober H. Fischer) don't call it the Sixth part but add it to the end of the Fifth part with a separate heading "A Brief Exhortation to Confession".