April 8, 2015
There is a sublime ridiculousness to the Fast and the Furious movies, especially in the way they create order from chaos.
A few hours after posting my piece I came across this section in David Foster Wallace's <i>Infinite Jest</i>, in which a father gives his son a lecture in their garage that discusses, of all things, the metaphysical connection between our bodies and our cars. Consider this a DFW-like addendum:
“Jim, this is where we keep this 1956 Mercury Montclair you know so well. This Montclair weighs 3,900 pounds, give or take. It has eight cylinders and a canted windshield and aerodynamic fins, Jim, and has a maximum flat-out road-speed of 95 m.p.h. per. I described the shade of the paint job of this Montclair to the dealer when I first saw it as a bit-lip red. Jim, it’s a machine. It will do what it’s made for and do it perfectly, but only when stimulated by someone who’s made it his business to know its tricks and seams, as a body. The stimulator of this car must know the car, Jim, feel it, be inside much more than just the … the compartment. It’s an object, Jim, a body, but don’t let it fool you, sitting here, mute. It will <i>respond</i>. If given its due. With artful care. It’s a body and will respond with a well-oiled purr once I get some decent oil in her and all Mercuryish at up to 95 big ones per for just that driver who treats its body like his own, who <i>feels</i> the big steel body he’s inside, who quietly and unnoticed feels the nubbly plastic skin and flesh, the muscle and sinew and bone wrapped in gray spiderwebs of nerves in the blood-fed hand just as he feels the plastic and metal and flange and teeth, the pistons and rubber and rods of the amber-fueled Montclair, when he shifts. The bodily red of a well-bit lip, parping along at a silky 80-plus per. Jim, a toast to our knowledge of bodies.”
To compare Fast and Furious to the creation story in Genesis is beyond ridiculous. It's sad to see Christianity be contorted in such a way as to make it fit into some movie review. I'm just honestly shocked
In Reply to Jasmine (comment #30303)
I certainly didn't mean to shock you. I'm not sure how familiar you are with Think Christian, but we regularly explore the Christian resonance that might be found in contemporary culture. We feel that's a reflection of God's sovereignty over his world, and that recognizing this is a way of seeing culture as God's good gift (which isn't to say culture doesn't have its human imperfections). Is it that approach in general you have trouble with, or is it applying the approach to the Fast and the Furious movies in particular?
Hi Josh, thank you for getting back to me,
What bothers me the most is, what seems to me, a complete disregard for the sovereignty of God's word. Elevating not just the Fast and Furious movies but any movie, idea, or person to the word of God is idolatrous. This became evident to me when reading parts of your review such as; "We sit back in our seats and realize: Furious 7 is very good." That sentence to me just screams blasphemy. I understand that you want to bring Christianity into the world but instead let's strive to bring the world to Christ. I hope this makes sense
In Reply to Jasmine (comment #30305)
I understand your concern, Jasmine, and appreciate the caution. To my mind, I wasn't elevating the movie to the level of the word of God, but rather finding theological resonance within the film itself. Hopefully this has helped clarify the distinction.
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