Will you go to see or recommend to your parishoneers an R-rated Movie?

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A new movie, The Brothers, made by blacks, starring blacks, was released this weekend (March 24). It is R-rated for Strong sexual content and language. [USA Today, Friday Mar. 23]. As black folk we are urged to support the work of our black brothers just because it is by and stars black folk. As a pastor/preacher/Christian, will you see this movie yourself? As a pastor/training to be a pastor or preacher, will you recommend it to your congregation? My answer to both questions is and emphatic NO. But perhaps I'm wrong.


Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, March 24, 2001


I fully believe in supporting Blacks, especially in this medium. The way the box office works is not by the number of people that sit in the theater for the movie, but by the number of tickets that are sold. Support black Actors, Producers, Screenwriters by purchasing a ticket to their movie. No one says that because you purchase the ticket you have to sit through the movie. We as African-Americans (and yes I'm using that term Pastor Paris) "waste" money on so much, this type of support would not be wasted.

-- Anonymous, March 25, 2001

If the movie is NOT bringine something positive to the Body of Christ, NO we shouldn't watch it, we should boycott it. Even if a black person directed and stared in the movie, We as saints should not compromise, the Word of God says, what does light hath with darkness? We are to come out from among the heathen and be seperate. We have producers and directors are out today, that wont compromise to the world and they have made movie which the saints can watch. See that is the problem, just because it's black, we should go and support it, please! Is the world supporting anything WE do?

-- Anonymous, March 26, 2001

Pastor Paris you raise a very interesting question. I have not heard of this movie but doubt if I will see it. Just as I chose not to see HANNBAL. There are good black film makers trying hard to present positive images and by all means we should support them. My daughter is 23 years old and is in pre-production for a documentary that she is working on. It is an exciting project. I have watched as she has hired personel and it is encouraging to see young christian filmakers, praying and asking God for support. She just hired a director for her project who is a christian, and has won six emmy awards. I remember when she told me she wanted to go into television, she asked if I were disappointed because she was not going to be a minister. I told her NO! For that is not what God called her to do and that God needs christians in all professions. Let's support black and white film makers who do not glorify violence or exploit people.

-- Anonymous, March 26, 2001

Pastor Paris, I agree with you on this one! My answer is also NO. While I support the works of Brothers and Sisters as much as I can, I think it is a mistake to do it blindly. This is the same principle as supporting a politician just because he is Black. In my view, if the Brother or Sister who is seeking support, has ignored our values and/or standards in producing the work, it is hypocritical to expect the Christian Community to validate their "garbage". I am aware that the folks that control the dollars may advocate and support these kinds of ventures because they will make money at the box office. Even Black corporate types sacrifice quality for the dollar. BET/Viacom showed this in the firing of Travis Smileybut that is a subject for another Board. Pastor, you are not wrong on this.

-- Anonymous, March 26, 2001

This is not a direct response, but it brought up something I have been meaning to share. I went to see a black play. And it was geard to Christians as a very well known Television Preacher wrote it. It was called "Behind Closed Doors." And I have to tell you I was pretty shocked. From the title I guess I should have imagined the contents, but actually nothing was done behind closed doors. Everyone was pretty open with the sin. It seems there are a lot of black plays geared for Christians to patronize.

I have to say this was my first one and I can't judge from the others, but I would like to think that there can be live entertainment that doesn't have to be so worldly, or soap operist. Are is that saying that that is what even the Christians want to see?

In Christ, Carmen

-- Anonymous, March 26, 2001

Tavis Smiley was fired? When did that happen??

Rapid-fire Tavis certainly presented an interesting persective and stimulated thought and discussion. I would imagine his shoes would be a challenge to fill.

-- Anonymous, March 26, 2001

I rejoice in your answers. I feared that we were getting too far down a slippery slope. It is interesting that Tavis Smily should enter the discussion. He is the one that says, "Think Black First". I also say think black first but don't compromise your values or quality. By the way, Tavis' contract was not renewed. I can't tolerate BET, but that is another question. Blessings Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, March 26, 2001

I must state my point here. The whole drive of the movie is geared toward my age group (21-35). I however will not watch the movie because presents the very appearance from which I am trying to get away from. That image of course is that young, successful, black males still do not have the capabilities of being mature, relationaly stable and abstinate. That is the wrong picture that we young men need to see. I will however not shun the movie. I think that all of us should be aware of the various movies that feature us or are based on us. We however do not have to condone or even praise those that do not reflect our Afro-Christian heritage.

-- Anonymous, April 14, 2001

Hotep (Peace),

As a person who is currently working on a feature film, I believe I have different insight. First, Afrikan Amercians do NOT fund the films, leaving producers with little options. Second, this industry is profit driven, pure capitalism. Third, there is no Afrikan Amercian distribution system in place. If we want wholesome films, then we should fund them otherselves. And NOT depend on other people.

As for me I am going to see the film and support the brother. If I can not stomach it, then I'll leave. If just KILLS me when Black folks whin and cry about things that they can control. The church collects enough money to fund projects, but don't. The return is extremely high on money invested in films. I suggest that instead of not supporting the brothers...find creative ways to help make good films. The people I work with are beautiful. They are very strong spiritual people. You don't know the backgrounds of these actors, so it is best do to be judgmental.

As for the wholesome films/plays. I can not take another production without a plot. It is boring. I like action, mystery and drama. I agree that some of the films need work, but I think that we should put our money where I mouth is. The film industry is not concerned with our morals.

On the Travis Smiley issue....BET is a disgrace. The only thing half way decent is Bobby Jones Gospel Hour. And I can barely take that with all the materalistic glitz. I saw some girls singing the other day, the only thing left from them to do was the booty shake.

Be Blessed.. Brenda

-- Anonymous, April 15, 2001

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