Discussing
The Tyler Perry problem

Josh Larsen

Josh Larsen
June 17, 2009

Why a Christian film critic is hesitant about the "faith-based" films of Tyler Perry.

Rupzip
June 17, 2009

Perry is a man who brings his faith to the workplace. The problem is that his faith is not a mature faith. He needs to be discipled and guided by some mature men. <br><br>I am happy that he is not afraid, but the message needs to grow up.<br><br>David Rupert<br>Red Letter Believers Blog<br>"Salt and Light"<br><a href="http://www.redletterbelievers.com" rel="nofollow">www.redletterbelievers.com</a>

SiarlysJenkins
June 17, 2009

First, there are Tyler Perry movies I love, and Tyler Perry movies I have doubts about. The ones I love are "The Family That Preys," "Why Did I Get Married" and "Daddy's Little Girls." The ones I have doubts about are the entire MaDea series. (For those who don't know "Ma Dea'" is a traditional way in SOME African American families of addressing an authoritative female, not necessarily a beloved one. See Antwan Fisher's biography, which reads differently from his semi-autobiographical fantasy movie.<br><br>What I dislike about the Ma Dea' movies is that they send a strong message that "black people" act one way, and "white people" act another way. Plenty of people, with or without congenital melanin deficiencies, believe that, and Perry reportedly based the character on the way his grandmother and a couple of aunts actually talked. But there is nothing getting in the way of children with dark complexion moving ahead so much as burdening them with the liabilities of "being black" in the most stereotypical way.<br><br>That said, his financial success is due in large part to the fact that millions of African Americans can identify with his characters, or recognize them, and simply don't see such familiar every-day family content in most mainstream movies. I like "The Family That Preys" because it crosses racial lines, with heroes and villains of all colors. I like "Daddy's Little Girls" because the characters and tensions are very very real, and the plot pulls no punches: drug dealers are not the heroes they were in Super Fly, they are parasites preying on the neighborhood. It doesn't hurt, for my enjoyment, that social workers intervene in such realistically unproductive ways. I like "Why Did I Get Married" because it shows that an all-brown cast of characters, exemplifying several of the fifty-eleven different African American subcultures, can offer a universal message to anybody and everybody.<br><br>The religious component? Yes, that is part of family life, and it doesn't show up in the movies very often. Having moved from a very agnostic set of social circles to deeply religious circles a few years ago, many of the individuals in the latter being people with dark complexions, I appreciate seeing this very real part of American community life put up on the screen. I don't expect Tyler Perry to offer a theologically correct inspiration, just a slice of life as millions of Americans live it.

Dons
June 18, 2009

From a journalistic perspective, Josh, you "call 'em the way you see 'em." Point out the flaws while commending the "good" things (both in intent and execution). Nothing wrong with reporting on a mixed message if that's what the director/writer/actor is sending.<br><br>From a biblical discipleship perspective, I'm a little tired of having to settle for mixed results in the arts. Just as there is legitimate criticism to be leveled at Christians who want their message to cover the sins of bad artistry, so should we not tolerate the "bones" thrown toward the religious market by otherwise secular and worldly artists. Why should I tolerate gratuitous, immoral behavior and language just because there's a hint of goodness in there somewhere?<br><br>I'm not judging Tyler Perry specifically, by the way. Others should be in the same category of evaluation as we try to discern what is true, honorable, right, pure, etc. (Philippians 4:8).<br>

Yvette
June 18, 2009

I think that Perry's movies/plays depict the emotionally disturb human being that he truly is. I personally think that he is a sick man. Perry doesn't write to truly draw his audience to God. He writes to get recognition for himself. Perry is a very insecure man. He likes attention and he does what he has to do to get it; even if it means compromising his Christian beliefs. A Christian man dressing up acting as if he is a woman? Is that God's idea? Perry acts so much like a woman that it scares me! The sad thing is that, Perry is surrounded by prominent Christian men. Well known Ministers and Pastors and no one seems to have the boldness to tell him that this character is not of God. We accept it, laugh at it and support it. We evade the real issue, Perry is a sick confused man and he needs healing and deliverance.

JT
June 18, 2009

I’m glad that Tyler Perry is not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and that his movies and plays have a strong Spiritual foundation. I know that as he continues to keep God first. His endeavors will blossom into something magnificent.

SiarlysJenkins
June 18, 2009

It would be hard to get much farther apart than Yvette and JT. I'm glad to know that there are as many ways to analyze Tyler Perry as their are human beings to watch his movies. I would like to make a brief comment about Perry dressing up as a woman. Ma Dea' is DELIBERATELY cast as a stereotype, not as what everyone wants their own grandma to be like. It adds something to the burlesque to have a man playing the role. One could say it is part of the joke that she is not a "REAL woman." On the other hand, Perry has played mature male roles, married to a woman, in some of his other movies. Remember that in Shakespeare's time, ALL female roles were played by male actors, because is was not considered proper or feminine for a woman to act on the stage in any role.<br><br>I am in no position to judge whether Perry keeps God first, but he is not ashamed of the Gospel, in fact he makes a point of lifting the gospel up, and that is a good thing in itself.

Logicmandsm
June 18, 2009

?

C.
June 19, 2009

Sorry you had to grit your teeth during the movie "Fireproof". It's difficult enough to find Christian based entertainment without a critic like you knocking the attempt. The two times I have seen "Fireproof", I don't believe there was a dry eye in the theatre. Don't know what your beliefs are, but I believe the Lord can and will use media to bring us to tears and changed hearts towards Him and His Word. At least people like Tyler Perry are getting the message out there that we are so ready to see Christian based entertainment, although not perfect, instead of all the other stuff that this world puts in front of us!

Ryan
June 19, 2009

Are you implying that any media that calls itself Christian should inherently be above criticism from Christians? For decades, Christians have been producing sub-par art and getting away with it because of exactly that attitude. I implore you to have higher standards. Just mentioning Jesus or having a Gospel message in a film does not automatically make it worthy of praise. Many "worldly" films are so beautifully made that they show me more about God the Creator than most so-called "Christian" films that are poorly done.<br><br>Certainly, there are exceptions to this (in the last 10 years I've come across plenty of wonderful, edifying, artistically sound Christian music), but I hope that we're beyond making excuses for bad Christian media and art. God doesn't call us to make things that are just cheap knockoffs of secular counterparts, or to capitalize on a built-in audience that watches just to see a message that they already agree with.

Jhpot
June 19, 2009

Think of it this way, C.: Handel's Messiah and Michelangelo's work on the ceiling of the Sistene Chapel were created not only to appeal to Christian audiences, but also to be the best freaking art being made in that era or even history. Works like these bring glory to God that resounds through the ages. Somehow I doubt "Fireproof" will be compared to those works in ages to come...

Rick
June 19, 2009

We have been blessed with such a wealth of Christian themed films in the last few years. From the three Lord of the Rings films, the two wonderful Narnia films, even Flatliners, Ground Hog's day and a comedy like Bruce Almighty. Where Christians don't do as well is explicit evangelistic films. I suffered through the Billy Graham tract style movies as a teenager and no matter how much I appreciate Kirk Cameron or Tommy Tenney (One Night With The King) I can't sit through them. Mel Gibson came close to getting it right in the Passion. I always agree with the sentiment, I love the brothers and sisters personally, but the writing, the dialog, the plots, the acting and directing just hasn't been there. Tyler Perry's films don't fall into that explicit evangelistic category, they are unique family comedies that have found their audience but they still suffer from craft problems. However they make money, serve an audience and exist in a reality that includes God. More power to him. I still have high hopes for a well crafted, more explicit, persuasive Christian Film though.

Penelope Glass
June 19, 2009

You have to admit that Mr. Perry has a great concept and he brings in people that he knows can get the point over. We have to think about all the pictures that he has made are all reality. We live through abuse,<br>drug additcts, everything that he has projected.<br><br>Their is nothing that we have not seen before but it a true fact.

SiarlysJenkins
June 21, 2009

I'm not sure "Gone With The Wind" or "The Wizard of Oz" will be classics 500 years from now either. Artists and media for artists to practice their craft on were rare in Michelangelo's day. Today's profusion gives us many choices, but they are not necessarily going to mean much to future centuries -- still, they mean something to their audience now.

SiarlysJenkins
June 21, 2009

Define "mature faith." How does one imperfect human being recognize it in another? Then, explain how you know WHAT Tyler Perry's faith is? I could probably make an argument that Ma Dea's faith is immature, but then, she is a caricature. I didn't find the faith of her young relative, jilted by her lawyer husband, to be terribly immature -- she wasn't C.S. Lewis, but she had faith for her own life. Now, tell us how we can all find "some mature men" to disciple and guide each of us. There is something terribly shallow and arrogant about such a flippant dismissal.

SiarlysJenkins
June 21, 2009

If we are going to critique Christian themed films, the second Narnia movie did a terrible job at putting Prince Caspian up on the screen. It deviated horribly from the original story line, just to use a lot of special effects borrowed from Lord of the Rings creating a savage battle that never happened in the actual Chronicles. And what was so "Christian" about the Lord of the Rings trilogy? I know Tolkien was Roman Catholic, but the story line had more in common with Beowulf, the Edda, and Ragnarok.

Rupzip
June 22, 2009

<br>Actually, the Bible is pretty clear in what mature faith is. It is not left to subjective 'truth'. Eph 4:13-14. <br><br>All I am saying is that if Perry is trying to instill any kind of Biblical truth, it needs to be meticulously handled with care. James says that any teacher who leads one down a bad path would be better with a 'stone around his neck and drowned.' harsh words, but leader and influencers need to heed the calling.<br><br>When I said "Perry needs to be discipled by some mature men" you said it was "shallow and arrogant". My friend, the Bible isnt "shallow and arrogant" when it says that those that are mature in the faith should lead those that are immature. He needs to be surrounded not by groupies or yes men, but by people who will hold him and his work accountable. <br><br>I love that he isnt afraid of expressing his faith. He just needs to be pointed in the right direction.

Rick
June 22, 2009

A two hour movie rarely does justice to a book. I loved the narnis Chronicles and read them several times. I had no problem with the condensing of Caspians story, I was just thankful to see it reenacted with skill and imagination. I loved the themes of finding your real identity as a priests and Kings, Lucy’s steadfast faith, her ability to trust when she could not see, the watchful care of the Lion of Jusdah, the trial of faith of the children when Aslan delayed his coming, Aslan,s statement that he never does things the same way twice, the repentance of the children, the conversion of the dwarf, the lesson of Reepicheep about the weak being strong. Plus it was great entertainment. <br><br>Books could easily be written about the Christian typology and metaphors of the Lord of the Rings Tolkien wrote the book during world war 2 in a series of installments to his son who was fighting in the war. It put World War 2 in perspective and outlined some of the larger issues at stake. The trilogy is replete with biblical themes such as the faith of the small company of disciples, the threat of eradication for God’s special people, original sin, self sacrifice, redemption, the need for a savior figure to take the sin of humanity upon himself and bear it to his own death, his willingness to give his own life, resurrection, temptation, the clear demarcation between good and evil, the reality of the unseen world, fighting not against flesh and blood but spirits in high places, the contributions of the weakest members, the last days, he reality of the cosmic world war. No book is perfect, no theology is perfect, no movie is perfect but this was a valiant, highly entertaining and inspiring attempt to make sense of the state of the affairs of the world.<br><br>Personally I believe that often the well crafted ancient myths of men who lived in pre modern societies who feared God (or gods) have elements of truth and instruction woven through them.

Rick
June 22, 2009

Rupzip, I'm with Siarly on this one. But what I would say is that Tyler Perry is not trying to instill Biblical truth. Tyler Perry is a talented Christian person who is writing funny, entertaining comedies that will make money. It's not his ministry and he is not a pastor, he is a comedian. It just so happens that he writes from his worldview which is Christian with Christian morals and values. His movies are perfect, his theology isn't perfect, but his worldview is a refreshing break from the ungodly mindsets of much Hollywood drivel.

Rick
June 22, 2009

Movies aren't perfect. Aren't.<br><br>Sorry.

Emeka
June 22, 2009

The disciples said to Jesus. "There is a man casting out demons in your name and he is not one of us" Jesus said unto them, "if a man is not against us, he is for us". <br><br>My friends, these may not be the greatest films ever made, but they may have been responsible for bringing a few people to Christ. (More than a few). There were many none believers who after viewing a movie like "Fireproof", were introduced to some scripute for the first time ever and became captivated with some of it, then sought into the Holy Bible for more great wisdom. <br><br>God only knows the number... Its was after watching the movie "Facing the Giants" (same director as Fireproof) that I became saved and gave my life to the Lord. Praise to be God<br><br>Instead of givng destructive criticism to these directors, let us encourage them and any else trying to get out a message from God. lets up pray for them and not judge them. God Bless you and thank you for allowing me to share.

SiarlysJenkins
June 22, 2009

Books could be written about almost any typology and metaphors in almost anything. I once spun a line about a touchy-feely professor teaching a course on phallic symbolism in natural rock formations, only to find that a professional photographer had published a book of alleged female erotica in natural landscapes. That's why I have never taken a course in the meaning of any literature -- literature is to read, and we each get something different out of it. I'm dubious about PhD's in the subject too. What Tolkien conspicuously lacks is that his characters have no faith in a deity, and for me his sense of magic does not rise to the analogy that Lewis achieved. But then, Lewis was Protestant.

SiarlysJenkins
June 22, 2009

If you think the Bible is pretty clear, you are not paying attention. Seriously, any given passage may have a clear meaning for you, and it may be of God and inspired by the Holy Spirit, but it may not be universal truth. I find Ephesians 4:13-14 to paint a pretty picture with analogies and adjectives, but it is hardly a checklist from which I could measure your spiritual maturity, Perry's, or my own. I once tried to break down for a Jehovah's Witness what I admired in the teachings of her church, and what I did not. She, being committed to the whole as a complete body of theology, asked me "But do you read the Bible?" Indeed I do, and so do the Presbyterians, Baptists, Pentecostals, Methodists, Greek Orthodox, and (gasp) Roman Catholics! Not to mention, ask a Jewish rabbi about the meaning of the original Hebrew in what we call the Old Testament! Our earthly experience is left to subjective truth, but we know there is an objective truth, which we see "through a glass darkly." If the Truth were clear, then we would all be members of one holy apostolic church, and probably amenable to the rule of Popes and Patriarchs, since all would literally be of one accord, not indulging in Reformations and revivals.<br><br>I'm all for those who are mature in the faith leading those who are immature. Unfortunately, the immature have not come to me for leadership. Oh, maybe I'm not as mature as I think I am.

Bethanykj
June 23, 2009

True. And I don't think a "christian message" in a movie will ever do much work to convert others (to be honest, I left The Passion of the Christ questioning my faith, not strengthened in it). In my experience, the holy spirit most often works through relationships, and we can't rely on movies to do the work of showing God's love for us.

Jhpot
June 23, 2009

Ohhhh, I get it: we shouldn't criticize any art that's Christian because it might convert someone. I fully expect you to come to my finger painting exhibit in downtown Chicago, Emeka. It will feature Christian imagery in smudged, difficult to decipher florescent colours, and I'd love you to be on hand to tell all the haters to encourage me and pray for me. <br><br>In all seriousness, no one here is saying the films never should have been made. They have an audience, and they do well with that audience. But just because art is Christian doesn't mean it gets a free pass from criticism. Those of us who take film seriously are going to long to see Christians take film to a higher level than the likes of Fireproof.

John
June 23, 2009

Bethany - why shouldn't Bible-believing Christians offer wholesome alternatives to godless, secular entertainment? Who cares if the production values are relatively low, as long as these professing Christians are showing the rest of the universal body of believers that there is an alternative to the wicked lifestyles glorified in secular media?<br><br>And how can you say what will or will not work to convert everyone else, without omniscience? Even though I have grown enough in my faith to see the many holes and inaccuracies in the movie, I trace my salvation and surrender to God's will in my life to the first time I ever watched the Passion of the Christ. So much for your theory that a movie with a "christian message" will never do much work to convert others. <br><br>The Holy Spirit is omnipotent - who are we to declare the media in which He could or couldn't work to save the lost? When we see movies like the Passion and others that have assailed the Christian faith, shouldn't we be like the Berean Christians and search the Scriptures, comparing God's truth to what the world puts forth as truth?<br><br>Just asking.

Bethanykj
June 23, 2009

I am not saying that there is no point to producing Christian movies, though we should all strive for excellence in everything we do, including production tasks like lighting, editing, acting and writing. I am, however, pointing out that movies will always be imperfect, and we should not expect them to do our work for us.

James
June 23, 2009

whoawhoawhoa. You seem to be presuming here that there are two kinds of movies: Movies made by Christians with explicitly spiritual themes, and "godless, secular entertainment." I can say as a Christian that the best movies I've ever seen explore questions of faith and values were movies made by people who were either incredibly mad at or not at all a part of Christianity. In fact, I can think of very few movies explicitly made by and for Christians that weren't complete and utter crap, displaying a shallow if existent engagement with difficult questions, presenting the theology of contemporary evangelicalism as if it held the answers to all of life's questions. No non-Christian with a functioning brain is going to sit through a Christian movie with bad production values, shoddy writing, and wooden acting and do anything but laugh out loud.<br><br>Who are we, indeed, to declare the media in which the Holy Spirit could work to push people to being closer to God and to living more ethical lives? Who are <i>you</i> to declare all non-Christian art to be "godless and secular" and promoting "wicked lifestyles"? The presumption that nothing good can come out of any non-Christian is a <i>major</i> blind spot in contemporary evangelicalism, in that it blinds them to (a) the good things that don't come out of Christianity but come out of other (or no) spiritual traditions, and (b) the fact that Christians spend their hard-earned money and time on an awful lot of rather empty and shallow crap just because it bills itself as "Christian."

Stephanie
June 23, 2009

I'm probably one of the youngest readers of TC, so I've grown up in a pretty much "post-racial" environment. That said, I find it strange that ANYONE could view this post only in terms of the depictions of race in these movies. Aren't the questions of the moral relativism depicted in Tyler Perry movies much more troubling? I don't know you, or even how old you are, but it seems that the generation of my parents is too stuck on these racial hang-ups to see the bigger problems at hand.

Misty Williams
June 23, 2009

What do you all think about the film "Faith Like Potatoes"?<br>Thanks,<br>Misty

SiarlysJenkins
June 24, 2009

Let me try a quick summary, casting out artificial distinctions. Tyler Perry makes movies that may not be classics for the ages, but are good entertainment -- some are better quality than others. He includes some Christian content -- not by announcing The Church with trumpets and fanfare, but as a matter of course, because faith is part of the lives of his characters. His movies are not vehicles for salvation, but they don't hurt and may help a little. He is not trying to offer a comprehensive, theologically correct line, and does not do so. You can criticize the quality of his work, but it doesn't mean he's a bad Christian. You can criticize the depth of his Christianity, but it doesn't mean he is an unskilled artist. We will each and all differ on all of the above. Finger painting, like movies should be judged on its own merits -- but none of us are going to heaven based on the merits of our work.

Stephanie
June 24, 2009

I'm a student at Asbury College, which is one of the best Media communications schools in the Country. We have entire classes devoted to why we should break the "Christian bubble " and be windows of God's light in a dark world. If we don't break into the realm of secular entertainment, how will we reach the Godless? I'm not saying we should sacrifice our morals or faith to get their attention. We can get their attention easily enough by being non-hypocritical, loving, and mature Christians. We have to tell the stories that they want to hear, but with a redemptive attitude. Non-Christians don't want to watch a Christian movie because "we want to convert them." So why don't we throw the ball in their court? IDK, just my thoughts...

Stephanie
June 24, 2009

I really like where you're going with this. I think that one of the main problems today is that we have lost the foundation of what it means to be a Christ follower. You can walk up to someone who has been a Christian for all of their life and ask them what the holy apostolic church is in reference too, and they might not have a clue! We are so caught up in feelings that we have lost sight of Christ. (Obviously, not every Christ follower is like this, but I see it more and more.) I admit that I'm just a guilty of this as the next person. If Christians get back to doing God's work, and not worrying about making a "good impression" we would be much more successful in showing God's light to this dark world. What happened to love? Seems like the general opinion of the world is that Christians are hypocrites. That's no ones fault but our own. I think we should get back to the Child-like state that God wants us to be in.

SiarlysJenkins
June 24, 2009

That's an interesting question, but I'm not aware of the moral relativism depicted in Tyler Perry movies. Could you give some examples? I was 14 when Martin Luther King was murdered, and when I was born, it was illegal for what were quaintly called "mixed race" couples to marry in Virginia. In a small way, I pioneered "post-racial" by simply refusing to acknowledge race as a barrier, so I find Perry's depiction of race as a meaningful category disturbing, but there is more to his movies than that. Generally, it seems to me that characters who wrong each other end up paying for it, and maybe even learning from it.

SiarlysJenkins
June 24, 2009

True. John Wycliffe said it is an individual relationship between each of us and God, mediated by nobody but Jesus, based on our own reading of Scripture, informed directly by the Holy Spirit. I think the original sin was to form an institutional church. Corporate worship is good and important, having Sunday school for the kids is a good thing, people can work in groups on showing God's light to the world... but its not about councils and doctrine and defining for all how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, or even how many gods Christians worship (Muslims have the idea we worship three -- except for the Unitarians). Its about how you live, not what cool sticker you have on your car.

Stephanie
June 26, 2009

Here is just another thought...<br>If God places a significant emphasis on beauty (not superficial, but God-ordained beauty like in the temples that he had built), then why shouldn't Christians strive to make our art (film or any other media) as beautiful as we can. Not with the point of winning people to Christ, but for HONORING God?

Glen
June 29, 2009

Excellent comment Stephanie! You’ve hit on a passionate topic for me. <br><br>I definitely see the value in using art as a tool to evangelize directly, but I also see the Biblical precedent for musicians (and other artists) to play skillfully to God (Ps 33:3) as an offering unto Him. No other motivation, just doing it to worship God using the gifts He has given us, offering up something beautiful to Him simply because, and ultimately because, He is worthy. <br><br>A side benefit though, is that a sacrifice that is this beautiful could then actually end up reflecting God’s glory and drawing people to Him anyway! Psalm 19:1-2 says “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge”. Anybody ever watched the stars, or a sunset (God’s artwork) and become aware of God’s glory just by looking at what He has produced, without a word ever being spoken? <br><br>If we are made in the image of God, and the artistic gifts we have are a gift to us from our Creator, is it unreasonable to think that if we use these gifts to their full extent that we then might reflect just little tiny bit of God’s creative excellence and therefore bring glory to Him? Even if people don’t make the connection themselves, at the very least if someone is so moved by the art itself we may receive an opportunity to explain to them why it was created. Or shouldn’t the world be looking at the excellence of Christian art and going “wow! their God must be someone special for them to want to do that”? <br><br>I understand and respect the copying of pop trends if the art is basically a tool to spread the Word or influence society in a positive way. Or maybe the goal of copying trends is just to make money as even artists have to eat - so be it. But when I look at the beauty, texture, depth and richness of God’s artwork (the stars, sky, sunsets, mountains, oceans, rivers, etc.) and then turn on the radio in my car and hear a Christian singing 3 repetitive and seemingly uninspired notes over a drum machine, I can’t help but occasionally be a little sad and wonder if, in some cases, we may have missed a step.<br>

Elizabeth
June 30, 2009

I appreciate Perry's movies in that he he's giving an active christian outlook on situations. I only wish Perry didn't seem like the ONLY outlet for this view. Rockmond Dunbar's "Pastor Brown" movie looks promising on that account but we'll see. It picks up the "prostitute" moral theme again but I'm curious to see the treatment of it.

Emily
July 14, 2009

Oh man...this totally misses the target. Awesome movie!

Ownflavor
August 17, 2009

The term Christian means "Christ like". God tells His people to be Holy because He is holy. Although we are not perfect, Christians cannot continue to produce movies with profanity and other mixture and claim that God's hand is upon it. The theory "eat the fish and spit out the bones" is not scriptural. Many Christians are doing just that. Endorsing Tyler Perry makes him unaccountable for his ungodly works and encourages him to continue to produce works that entertain far more than it actually ministers and produces GODLY change in people's lives. Judgment is going to come to house of God first. We better stop straddling the fence and come into true holiness. <br><br>The writers and producers of Facing the Giants, Fire Proof and Flywheel have the key. They have created realistic works without compromising Biblical principles. Even the kissing scene in FireProof with Kirk Cameron was with his real wife. It's a shame that stuff like this doesn't get the props it deserves. But, garbage such as Tyler Perry movies draw the attention. Make no mistake about it, God is pleased with what glorifies Him, not that which entertains the flesh.

Morjanna
October 20, 2010

I did not feel Tyler's movies are unChristian in anyway, but wish he did not have Madea have less or no swearing. But she is very endearing! And I thought Fireproof was excellent. I do wonder how Tyler can be such good friends with Oprah. I do not think her views are Christian, she is MUCH MORE NEW AGE. I just would not be influenced by her.

Emca
August 17, 2011

Well simply speaking on the racial thing, I don't believe that we live in a "post-racial" environment at all. It's not that we don't see color or that race isn't there, but that it is more so treated differently. There is still plenty of racism all around this country and throughout this world, just read stuff like CNN or Bossip daily and you will see at least one thing relating to race. And I'm very young as well. As a matter of fact, just last year my high school had a race riot that was started by the white kids in an area that is becoming increasingly black. I think that the whole term and thought of post-racialism is currently still premature. Not only that but I don't think we actually need to live in a post-racial world at all. We only believe that because in the last couple hundred years, acknowledging the color of another was immediately thought to be mean and hateful and coming with preconceived notions which were wrong. The same thing is said about our religion and religion in general. We went from trying to acknowledge differences to saying that they don't exist or aren't even important, which I don't believe is true. Sorry to bring this whole race thing up again in a Christian blog

Maureen
September 13, 2011

The same is true of film. For me, to claim the Tyler Perry/Fireproof brand of entertainment is deep or artistically excellent is sort of like going into a Christian bookstore, reading all the little plaques and believing you've done a Beth Moore study. I know lots of people who love these movies and find that they really resonate with them. Entertainment is very personal. Enjoy, but I don't think you can defend them as art any more than you can defend a twinkie as haute cuisine. Critics look for certain qualities in a piece of pottery, a musical performance, a room design, or a piece of pie that mark it's quality.

My2cents
September 14, 2011

<br>Tyler Perry's movies are not art; I don't think they are supposed to be. They<br>are comical, silly, and serious, yet portray real problems people can relate to.<br>They carry a message of hope to economically disadvantaged youth to overcome<br>adversity, and points to a better way. I enjoy Perry’s movies and appreciate<br>the subtle message, without being pushy. His movies are perfect to share with<br>those who are not believers. I guess I am a loyal fan! <br><br><br><br>

My2cents
September 14, 2011

<br><br>Tyler Perry's movies are not art; I don't think they are supposed to be. They<br>are comical, silly, and serious, yet portray real problems people can relate to.<br>They carry a message of hope to economically disadvantaged youth to overcome<br>adversity, and points to a better way. I enjoy Perry’s movies and appreciate<br>the subtle message, without being pushy. His movies are perfect to share with<br>those who are not believers. The unsaved can relate to the characters that<br>appear to be like them; real, lost and looking for answers. <br><br><br>

Sammer2011
September 15, 2011

Remember what the bible tells us to be in the world not of the world. I do not believe Tyler is of the world, and his relationship with Oprah should not be judged. If all our friends were Christians then when would the message of the Gospel be able to be preached if all it is is a Christian clique you are hanging out with. We need our lost friends so that we can influence and witness to them. I believe that is what Tyler is doing as far as his relationship with Oprah is concerned

Sandra
September 18, 2011

Tyler Perry is a blessed man! I love his movies because he shows the reality that just because you are a Christian everything is not going to be perfect in your life.. Your marriage may not be perfect, your kids may not be perfect and YOU may not be perfect!! We struggle with the same problems as everyone else. The Lord looks at your heart and those that think they are so HOLY will be last and those that seem like they are so full of the devil will be first... Thank God Jesus died for us because no matter how much you may go to church and read your bible YOU WILL NEVER BE PERFECT.. Lets stop being so RELIGIOUS  and face the fact that we are all in need of the grace of God!!  Tyler I pray the Lord keep blessing you and He will open the eyes of those that are so Blinded by RELIGION!!

Mary
September 18, 2011

Lets not forget that not every Christian is eating solid food some are still babies in the Lord and they come to Him with many bad habits that only God can free them from.. and i think those are the characters he portrays in his films... I dont think he makes GARBAGE as you just said he shows the reality that we will never be as Perfect as Jesus that's why He had to die for us... And people need to stop PRACTICING RELIGION and realize that WE ALL FALL SHORT OF THE GRACE OF GOD!

Twilliamsg
December 31, 2011

You have to realize that Fireproof was a very low budget film. They didn't have Hollywood's money or actors and thank goodness.  It may not be world reknown but God used it to give me the courage to stay in my marriage so it will be appriciated by my family tree, and many others whose lives it has impacted for ages to come.  Don't be so critical.

Twilliamsg
December 31, 2011

You are very critical JHPOT. I believe the issue here is FUNDING.

Anthony
October 25, 2017

Grit your teeth? Disturbed because he dresses like a woman? Are you people kidding me? First of all, did you grit your teeth while you watched movies about senseless killing, drug dealing, stealing, adultery, fornication,etc.? Iwould dare say you sat there and enjoyed the movie; so please quit it with the "higher than thou" criticism. This man could've tried to bring his message across in a way that didn't include God or the bible like so many after school specials have, but, he didn't. He honored God and although imperfect gave him the glory by simply bringing his message in this way. As far as, being disturbed, Jesus left His heavenly throne to dress up in this flesh called humanity to bring a message of love. would you call Him disturbed too? In addition, I think you need to look up the definition of acting. This person is trying to convey a positive message through entertainment. Is that simple enough for you? It's funny how those that are imperfect themselves expect perfection from others.

Add your comment to join the discussion!