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(Washington Post)   Why "The Hobbit" is a Christian film   ( washingtonpost.com) divider line
    More: Interesting, Christian film, Nordic countries, Lexington, Kentucky, C.S. Lewis, liberal arts colleges, subtext  
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4912 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 15 Dec 2012 at 9:22 PM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-15 11:10:36 PM  

antidisestablishmentarianism: AverageAmericanGuy: And let's face it, Tolkein was a pretty boring storyteller.

I tried reading The Hobbit in middle school. I didn't get very far before I was bored out of my skull. I preferred Stephen King and Michael Crichton over Tolkein.


Michael Bay is awesome, right?
 
2012-12-15 11:12:52 PM  

AeAe: antidisestablishmentarianism: AverageAmericanGuy: And let's face it, Tolkein was a pretty boring storyteller.

I tried reading The Hobbit in middle school. I didn't get very far before I was bored out of my skull. I preferred Stephen King and Michael Crichton over Tolkein.

Michael Bay is awesome, right?



Yeah Stephen King never gets long winded....Crichton? seriously? yeah never long winded either.

Michael Bay...I would love to see his version of the hobbit...
 
2012-12-15 11:23:50 PM  

Wayne 985: I did. The author quoted someone else who paraphrase the Tolkien quote, and yet he disregarded it.


Subby's headline is misleading. Have a lovely evening.
 
2012-12-15 11:25:45 PM  
It IS "yes" and "no":

* Pulls down "The Letters of JRR Tolkien" (1981 Allen and Unwin).*

Tolkien wrote to Milton Waldman of Collins Publishing House in 1951 that, while he was attempting to create something quite new, that's inevitably doomed because all good myths resemble one another - there's creation, fall and redemption (or not, presumably).

Specifically, he says:

"I dislike allegory - the conscious and intentional allegory - yet any attempt to explain the purport of myth or fairytale must use allegorical language (and, of course, the more 'life' a story has, the more readily it will be susceptible of allegorical interpretations: while the better a deliberate allegory is made the more nearly will it be acceptable just as a story)."
 
2012-12-15 11:25:54 PM  

antidisestablishmentarianism: I tried reading The Hobbit in middle school. I didn't get very far before I was bored out of my skull. I preferred Stephen King and Michael Crichton over Tolkein.


The Hobbit is a children's story you can finish in a couple of hours - if you couldn't - I highly doubt you could make it through any Stephen King novel.
 
2012-12-15 11:27:23 PM  

gingerjet: antidisestablishmentarianism: I tried reading The Hobbit in middle school. I didn't get very far before I was bored out of my skull. I preferred Stephen King and Michael Crichton over Tolkein.

The Hobbit is a children's story you can finish in a couple of hours - if you couldn't - I highly doubt you could make it through any Stephen King novel.


Exactly right. Really easy read.
 
2012-12-15 11:28:06 PM  
I've yet to find a movie which hasn't been interpreted as such.
 
2012-12-15 11:35:11 PM  

DamnYankees: I've yet to find a movie which hasn't been interpreted as such.


Life of Brian?
 
2012-12-15 11:38:16 PM  
Tolkien in his second edition LOTR foreword stated that "one should not confuse allegory with applicability." Mind you, I doubt the author has read the Hobbit within the last quarter century, let along ever reading the foreword to LOTR.
 
2012-12-15 11:45:11 PM  
I must have read it 8 times, but it never had a Catholic vibe at all. ymmv
 
2012-12-15 11:47:53 PM  
I think I might like boring stories. I never got bored reading any Tolkein, and I like David Lean films.
 
2012-12-15 11:52:22 PM  
Because it's fiction too?
 
2012-12-15 11:53:32 PM  

thisispete: <b><a href="http://www.fark.com/comments/7488192/81309491#c81309491" target="_blank">b2theory</a>:</b> <i>I think I recall that C.S. Lewis, JRR Tolkien, and G. K. Chesterton were drinking buddies.</i>

Call it an inkling, if you will.


Also, Charles Williams, whose work is altogether under appreciated.
 
2012-12-15 11:53:35 PM  

impaler: I like David Lean films.


Those are considered "boring"?

WTF??

/loved LOTR and the Hobbit when I read it as a kid, and while I'm well read I am not a "reader" in that I've never found enough time
 
2012-12-15 11:54:13 PM  
i21.photobucket.com
 
2012-12-15 11:58:58 PM  
ftfa
"Brown, whose book, "The Christian World of the Hobbit," was published in October by Abingdon Press"

aaaaand way to go Fark

helping this douchenozzle plug his book.
 
2012-12-16 12:01:57 AM  
I wonder how Lord of the Rings would've turned out if Gandalf had failed to stop the balrog under Moria and it killed the rest of the fellowship and took possession of the One Ring.
 
2012-12-16 12:07:07 AM  

MurphyMurphy: ftfa
"Brown, whose book, "The Christian World of the Hobbit," was published in October by Abingdon Press"

aaaaand way to go Fark

helping this douchenozzle plug his book.


Except that, you know, in his letters and such, Tolkien explicitly says that he draws from many sources, including Christian myths, making this a pretty legitimate scholarly approach to take. And stuff.
 
2012-12-16 12:07:56 AM  

Arumat: I wonder how Lord of the Rings would've turned out if Gandalf had failed to stop the balrog under Moria and it killed the rest of the fellowship and took possession of the One Ring.


Isn't that how we got Putin?
 
2012-12-16 12:10:05 AM  

Arumat: I wonder how Lord of the Rings would've turned out if Gandalf had failed to stop the balrog under Moria and it killed the rest of the fellowship and took possession of the One Ring.


'Well, This is a Waste of Time" by JRR Tolkien
 
2012-12-16 12:17:57 AM  
images4.wikia.nocookie.net
Three, three threads about the hobbit on fark in one day, ah ah ah
 
2012-12-16 12:19:18 AM  

BumpInTheNight: [images4.wikia.nocookie.net image 850x650]
Three, three threads about the hobbit on fark in one day, ah ah ah


Not enough. I'm farking excited to see it. I will on Monday.
 
2012-12-16 12:19:27 AM  
3.bp.blogspot.com


Makes sense. I view the Hobbit as a continuation of the Christian themes in all of Peter Jackson's other films.
 
2012-12-16 12:37:39 AM  

Raharu: I'd follow Gandalf or Aslan over most of the bible.

They kick ass and are intelligently designed.


This. Never saw Gandalf as Jebus, but I love Aslan as a Jebus metaphor.
 
2012-12-16 12:55:33 AM  
If it gets otherwise strict Christian parents to expose their Christian children to Tolkien's tales, sure, why not.
 
2012-12-16 01:06:46 AM  

s2s2s2: Wayne 985: I did. The author quoted someone else who paraphrase the Tolkien quote, and yet he disregarded it.

Subby's headline is misleading. Have a lovely evening.


You too. Keep herping that derp, my friend.
 
2012-12-16 01:18:03 AM  

MagnesDrachen: Because it's fiction too?


Awesome
 
2012-12-16 01:20:09 AM  

Psycoholic_Slag: MagnesDrachen: Because it's fiction too?

Awesome


So true.

A book written 30 years after Jesus died should be trusted.

20 years after elvis died people claim he is still alive and many facts are gotten wrong about his life.

And we have documents and people who lives during the time getting this stuff wrong.

hilarious what people will believe.
 
2012-12-16 01:28:51 AM  

beantowndog: Bilbo fought a dragon, just like jesus.


Or St.George.
 
2012-12-16 01:30:54 AM  
LOTR etc. has many infliuences to it, and Christianity is just one of them. However, you can say there was more influence on the struggle between nature and industrialisation and the effects of WW1. There's a fair hint of promoting traditions, and joining up, and the fight against being a cog in the machine. There also a large amount of morality and ethics in there.

However, most importantly is it s a lingual exercise, because he thought people would make less fun of him for making up new languages if he applied them to fantasy novels.
 
2012-12-16 01:34:08 AM  

Because Catholics and the RCC take what they want, force you to convert at swordpoint (or kill you if you refused) and then call it their own?

lh4.googleusercontent.comlh3.googleusercontent.comlh4.googleusercontent.com


/WAIT TIL I TELL YOU ABOUT EASTER...
 
2012-12-16 01:38:22 AM  
What a bunch of fuggin' crap... i just started reading TFA... convulsed, had to stop reading.

/"HERE'S WHAT SOME LIBERAL ARTS PROFESSOR THINKS about 'THE HOBBIT'...
 
2012-12-16 01:40:47 AM  
 
2012-12-16 01:46:42 AM  
It isn't.
 
2012-12-16 02:07:07 AM  

urban.derelict: Because Catholics and the RCC take what they want, force you to convert at swordpoint (or kill you if you refused) and then call it their own?

[lh4.googleusercontent.com image 220x269][lh3.googleusercontent.com image 214x252][lh4.googleusercontent.com image 217x207]
/WAIT TIL I TELL YOU ABOUT EASTER...


Conversion didn't happen by the sword in Western Europe. It happened via missionaries. There's a great episode of Hardcore History about this. Basically, if the king converted, everyone else converted too. But there was a very weird amalgam in early Christianity between the old traditions and the new with depictions of a warrior Christ in place of similar warlike pagan gods. It also made sense to keep the holidays. Basing them on the solstice, like Christmas/Yule/Saturnalia/Sol Invictus makes sense in a society where there isn't much literacy or many calendars, but everyone can see the sky.

The metaphor of reaching the lowest point in the year and the days starting to lengthen is also to be noted. There are obvious fertility parallels in Easter around Spring with its idea of resurrection after death. There's also some scriptural basis in its link with the Jewish festival of Passover and the timing of Easter, but again it falls on the Sunday following the first full moon that falls on or after the spring equinox and when calendars were rare, this was probably the most reliable way that communities throughout Christendom were on the same page.

The transition between paganism and Christianity was a gradual one and not an overwhelming revolution, so older traditions evolved and adopted new meanings. A new religion probably will find it difficult to succeed if they get rid of the festivals and piss ups enjoyed by previous generations. The Puritans outlawed Christmas when they were in charge in Britain, and the monarchy was swiftly restored after Cromwell's death.
 
2012-12-16 02:18:19 AM  
And Black Sabbath is Christian Rock. SFW.
 
2012-12-16 02:19:49 AM  

Daikiki: graggor: this is final farewell to the tolkien univserse. peter jackson seems to have it right so far.

Just wait until he gets his hands on the Silmarilion. It'll probably end up being 16 four hour movies.


We should be so lucky. "The Children of Hurin" would be 16 four-hour movies all by itself.
 
2012-12-16 02:22:12 AM  

Gyrfalcon: Daikiki: graggor: this is final farewell to the tolkien univserse. peter jackson seems to have it right so far.

Just wait until he gets his hands on the Silmarilion. It'll probably end up being 16 four hour movies.

We should be so lucky. "The Children of Hurin" would be 16 four-hour movies all by itself.



hyperbole aside. He has enough material to fill this time. the movie didnt feel long. it was paced well and it was exciting. I didnt ever feel like unecesarry info was being told.
 
2012-12-16 02:32:08 AM  
Actually this article is kind of refreshing. I expect to hear Christians going on about how LOTR promotes an evil satanic message.
 
2012-12-16 02:54:48 AM  
BECAUSE THEY ARE BOTH WORKS OF FICTION.

/caps mean I'm yelling.
 
2012-12-16 02:55:16 AM  
Christians should not believe in Hobbits and Elves.

They should only believe in Satan and Demons.

Get real!
 
2012-12-16 03:04:38 AM  
Christians see Jesus in everything they like, unless they see Satan. Depends on how funny it makes their private areas feel.
 
2012-12-16 03:14:43 AM  

Old enough to know better: Actually this article is kind of refreshing. I expect to hear Christians going on about how LOTR promotes an evil satanic message.


That's Harry Potter.
 
2012-12-16 03:32:07 AM  

wraith95: Trade Secret: I'll join in with the group that says Tolkiens writing was boring. It was, I'm not saying that they weren't interesting just that they did little to hold my interest. And yes, I am a reader of real books

Agreed. Now don't get me wrong, his ideas and world development are amazing, and a big part of why I turned into such a huge nerd. That being said, it took me five attempts to completely read LotR because I would find myself skimming until something interesting was happening, and I gave up on the Simarillion fast.


Wait. Are you me?
 
2012-12-16 03:35:29 AM  
i think the Christina nutfarks do a pretty bang on job promoting Satan themselves...

/Dante is laughing
//bigfoot is Jesus
 
2012-12-16 03:36:41 AM  

Haliburton Cummings: i think the Christina nutfarks do a pretty bang on job promoting Satan themselves...

/Dante is laughing
//bigfoot is Jesus


spellcheck + VODAK = Christina...

I meant those arsehole Christians...

/sorry Christina, wherever you are
 
2012-12-16 04:37:18 AM  

towatchoverme: MurphyMurphy: ftfa
"Brown, whose book, "The Christian World of the Hobbit," was published in October by Abingdon Press"

aaaaand way to go Fark

helping this douchenozzle plug his book.

Except that, you know, in his letters and such, Tolkien explicitly says that he draws from many sources, including Christian myths, making this a pretty legitimate scholarly approach to take. And stuff.


Yeah, I get that.

csb

My old man is a Christian and one of the few occasions I can remember him taking direct intervention in my education was when he found out I had read my 6th Hardy Boys book (that I was buying w/ my allowance). He took me to the mall (Waldenbooks I think it was) and said

"I'll make you a deal, you let me buy you one book and if you don't like it I'll buy you all the Hardy Boys books you want"

(I'm not sure if he knew this, but I did; there are hundreds of Hardy Boys books). He got me the lion, the witch and the wardrobe (cs lewis).

After that it was the rest of the Chronicles of Narnia.. after that he figured I had my reading chops and gave me The Hobbit and LoTR. I loved the Hobbit, it was another couple years until I got around to finishing Fellowship, (I was still pretty young) but when I did I burned through the whole trilogy, then read them all again.

He was always keen on discussing not the fantasy side of things but the themes and lessons (trying to rub off on me some interest in moral topics, I didn't have much interest in the Bible or church). What dad never got was, unlike CS Lewis creating direct allegory (spoiler alert: Aslan is Jesus) the LoTR was never that. It was, first and foremost, fantasy.


I didn't pick up on this aspect of it as a kid. Kids read books for the story, not to analyze their motivations and metaphors. As an adult reading them it's painfully obvious.

/csb


Tolkien does nothing more than admit to what is obviously true for all of us, when we write (or create anything) we all draw from ourselves and what we know and are surrounded by. He also drew from Norse mythology, does that mean The Hobbit is a book about Odin?

Of everything Tolkien ever said the biggest theme you can take away from his opinion on his own works is that they stand alone and hold their own meaning, not whatever people think he was trying to inject into the story.

Saying the Chronicles of Narnia is a Christian story is fine. It's common knowledge. It's fact. Write a book about it, sell some copies, etc... so are Stephen Lawhead's fantasy novels.

Saying the Hobbit or the Lord of the Rings is a Christian story is just idiocy, wishful thinking, or in the case of this guy... shameless jab at getting Christians to buy books so he can profit off the new movies.

There is nothing legitimate or scholarly about it. In fact it's quite the opposite.
 
2012-12-16 05:03:12 AM  

DanZero: So are we gonna get a review from our fine friends at CapAlert?

Wonder how this falls on the W I S D O M meters


How in the name of FSM have I not seen that site yet?

/bookmarked for HOURS of entertainment later
//"flash of implication of female upper nudity" indeed...
 
2012-12-16 05:10:31 AM  
No.
 
2012-12-16 05:19:14 AM  

AverageAmericanGuy: So was all the shiat that CS Lewis wrote. So what? The question is whether it's a good story or not.

And let's face it, Tolkein was a pretty boring storyteller.


Don't you mean to say "I think Tolkien was a pretty boring story teller"?

Because, let's face it, a lot of people disagree with you.
 
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