Does it matter if THE PASSION is recognized?

Oscars for Jesus

Michael Williams has a quick post up about THE PASSION and the fuss some are making over the awards it isn’t going to win. I’ve written about it myself a few times, as well.

Michael wonders why some people care so much about the awards, and he points out that the film wasn’t made for the purpose of winning awards. I’m certain that he’s correct.

But few films are made for the express purpose of winning awards. The awards exist (ostensibly) to recognize those films that have gone above and beyond. I put a comment up that included:

Wouldn’t it be nice to see a major, cared-for production like THE LORD OF THE RINGS about a religious story? Or even some non-religious historical event?

Hollywood has waned in importance in our society, but they’re still a major player. Movies aren’t really good places to learn history, you and I know. But a lot of people don’t know any better, and even you and I probably think some things in movies are true when they aren’t. And even the truth is often spun in ways that I don’t appreciate. The fact is that movies just don’t really educate people. Wouldn’t it be nice if they did?

I’m not saying that good, true-to-life films aren’t made. But they’re the exception. And I’d like them to become more of the rule. I’d like the standards of the movie-going public to be higher.

I think this is why the snubbing of THE PASSION might matter. This isn’t sour grapes over losing, mind you. It’s the lack of quality nominations (shutting down a lot of the conversation before it even begins) that rubs me the wrong way.

Go read Michael’s post (and my whole comment) over at Master of None by following the link at the top of this post.


  1. The book ‘Lord of the Rings’ was written by a Christian, and has many parallels to the bible, and christian type of thinking. I do agree with your point about setting higher standards. As I enjoy war movies the most, I have a critical eye for detail and I often anger fellow watchers when I point out the inaccuracies. I think I would indeed enjoy it much more if I had nothing bad to say about it.

  2. Vstress: I’m with you on always haggling over little inaccuracies. In fact, I have trouble watching a lot of the 60’s and 70’s WW2 movies because of the totally wrong weapons and armor. Too bad, because some of those movies are quite good otherwise. I realize that no movie will ever be 100% totally perfect, but wouldn’t it be nice if all military movies looked like SAVING PRIVATE RYAN or BAND OF BROTHERS?. LORD OF THE RINGS was fanatically obsessed with accuracy. And it’s based on a fictional story. It’s too bad movies based on real things usually aren’t even half as fanatic about it. PEARL HARBOR (despite the sappy romance) should have been the best of the best, with all the money and technology available. In fact, part of reason I’m so down on the sappy romance is that the non-romance parts of the movies are so b-a-d. Anything to pressure the Hollywood decision-makers to decide to make better films is okay with me. I’m not sure if THE PASSION has anything to do with that or not, but I suspect that it would help.

  3. The passion didn’t get nominated for any substantial awards because Hollywood doesn’t want people to have morals. That might mean they have to actually admit that there’s a right and wrong, and that you can’t just do ‘what you feel is right’, or ‘whatever makes you feel good’. That theory is what hollywood makes the most money off of. People can get away to this fantasy place where they can do what they want, and in the end, get away with it. Where bad equals good, where somebody will clean up your mess, and where there is no personal responsibility. People actually thinking that this might have truly happened, and living accordingly erodes the ‘power’ hollywood has over our lives. Many people get their whole moral structure from what they see in movies and tv. It scared them that this movie did so well, and it was about Jesus. Isn’t he someone Hollywood constantly makes fun of? (See South Park, Dogma, every movie beside The Passion) If money is the measure of a successful movie, It did extremely well, they just don’t want to recognize that Jesus is what he claimed to be. (my personal belief, don’t jump all over this, I will not debate religion with you. This is just my viewpoint)