So I just got back from the theater viewing a movie about my faith, Meet the Mormons. This film tells the story of 6 ordinary members from all around the world. This is not a piece on the Osmonds or the Romneys. Just 6 families.
Currently Rotten Tomatoes has the movie at 0% with nearly every critic calling it a ‘PR stunt’. I’d be lying if I didn’t say they were partly right but all documentaries are in a way. Almost all I have seen have a strong conviction one way or another, especially movies about current times.
For example, last year’s Blackfish has a 98% on rotten tomatoes and that movie makes almost no attempt to be fair. It tells its perspective and it tells it very well. I found it gripping. The same could be said for Michael Moore documentaries and even the recent Ken Burns miniseries on the Roosevelt’s was very slow to criticize and quick to praise the former presidents
Not every movie has to be everything to everyone. There is a place for movies that share a certain type of story, a certain type of message and if you don’t like said message then the movie isn’t for you. Take a look at my post called ‘Consider the Audience’ that talks about this issue.
As I was watching, I kept thinking ‘what if this was a series and we had Meet the Catholics, or Meet the Muslims, or Meet the Jehovah’s Witnesses’, would I enjoy it as much? Maybe not as much as my own faith finally getting some love (been a rough couple of years) but I’d still enjoy it. I’d love to hear about the lives of 6 honest, hard working Catholics, Muslims or Methodists.
I think most people are smart enough, even most children, to know when something is giving one side of an argument. My favorite bit was about the Candy Bombers in WWII and all they did for post-war Germany. I’d heard his story before but it is a great example of living close to the spirit so you can get those moments of clarity when you need them.
Plus, something tells me these critics would have no problem praising a movie with 6 ex-mormons sharing their heroic stories of leaving the cult of Mormonism…Groan.
People may also say it is ‘unrealistic’ that there aren’t really people this good and wholesome. ‘Nobody’s perfect’. Yes, nobody’s perfect but there are a lot of people actively striving to be good people.
If you went to any ward in the church you could find 6 men and women like the one’s shown in the movie. My ward there is an amazing woman who is a full time ER doctor, has 7 kids and sings in the tabernacle choir. Another woman is a domestic abuse survivor turned attorney. There are so many examples everywhere in the church and I enjoyed seeing 6 new one’s in the movies.
That said, it does feel like a visitor centers piece because it was. Still, a well done piece and I enjoyed learning about these 6 people. It’s comforting to know there are people who are striving to do the right thing and lead good lives.
I’m so grateful for my Membership in the Mormon church and to be surrounded by good people.
Here is the trailer. If this looks like something you’d hate than I can pretty much guarantee you will hate it but if it looks at all appealing check it out. I’m glad I saw it.
Here is the trailer
This perhaps belongs better on BYUTV but if it reaches more people than go for it!
Content Grade A+ Overall Grade B