My First Blog… Over 20 Years Ago

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You may not know this but Memories Matter isn’t my first trip around the blogosphere. It has been a full ten years since I retired as The Christian Critic. Between 1998 and 2008, I wrote movie reviews and film commentaries under the name of Michael Elliott.  My reviews were published in the website/blog Movie Parables and in a few syndicated columns scattered across small towns.

My very first review was the Leonardo DiCaprio 1998 film, The Man In The Iron Mask. After that, over the next ten years, I reviewed pretty much every major film that was given a national release in the U.S. In addition to providing the traditional critical appraisal of the film, I added a unique twist. I looked for (and always managed to find) a way to use the film or an aspect of it to make a biblical connection.

For instance, the familiar quote from Mr. Spock in the Star Trek series “Live long and prosper,” is more than Vulcan greeting… it is a biblical promise that can be found in both Ephesians chapter 6 and 3 John chapter 1.

In the Disney animated classic, “Pinnochio.” Jimmy Cricket tell us that “a conscience is that still small voice that people won’t listen to.” The line has even more poignance when you replace the word conscience with God. After all, “a still small voice” is how He is described in 1 Kings 19.

Writing the Christian Critic blog was a great time of spiritual growth and development for me because it forced me to look at the world through the filter of God’s Word. In addition to reading the Bible for understanding, I began to see more clearly how it can be practically applied to our lives. God did not give us His Word just so we could read it… It is meant to be lived.

That blog led to the publication of two books, Thus Saith Hollywood (vol 1 and 2). They are still available on Amazon and, come to think of it, in my studio… I think I still have a carton left somewhere.

Michael Ondrasik and Home Video Studio specialize in the preservation of family memories through the digitalization of film, videotapes, audio recordings, photos, negatives, and slides. For more information, call 352-735-8550 or visit our website.

 

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The Christian Critic

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Michael is still attending the Advanced Training for Home Video Studio owners but will be blogging from the field while he is gone. Subscribe to his blog to have them delivered directly to your email.

Many of us took a break from the classroom and technical learning we’ve been engaged in and decided to let our hair down last night by going out to a movie. We chose for our evening’s entertainment the newest superhero film to hit the silver screen, Black Panther.

Just the act of going to a movie reminded me that it has been a while since I’ve visited a movie house to watch a new release. Lately all I’ve been doing is streaming to my TV or watching movies on DVD.  There was a time when I could be found at the theatre 3 or 4 times per week.  For ten years of my life I served as a film critic and reviewed nearly every mainstream movie that was released (between 1998 and 2008).

I published my reviews under the name of Michael Elliott (Elliott being my middle name) and was known as The Christian Critic. The name of my website was Movie Parables because the underlying purpose of my reviews was not to say whether the films were good or bad. Instead I looked for and always found a biblical truth that was reflected in the film I was watching. And I wrote about that. Some were immediately evident, others required some deep thought and study. But it was always there. As my mantra was back then: Art imitates life… but the Word of God IS life. Therefore, art must reflect God’s handiwork, either consciously or subconsciously, if art is going to be true to its own self.

The Movie Parables website is no longer in existence. But I did grow as a result of building it. Hopefully I managed to bless a few people along the way. And, as they say, old habits die hard. After coming back from last night’s film, I started thinking about how I would structure my review of it if I were still writing for the website. For what it’s worth, here’s my biblical perspective on The Black Panther:

The scripture that ran through my head as I was leaving the film was Proverbs 29:2

When the righteous are in authority and become great, the people rejoice; But when the wicked man rules, the people groan and sigh.  Pro 29:2 (Amplified Bible)

Righteousness, for me, has always been explained as following the standards of truth established by our creator. Wickedness would be the opposite; the ignoring or disregarding of those standards.

The time structure of the movie gave audiences the opportunity to see three different kings on the throne. One was a good but flawed man whose mistakes brought harm upon his village. Another was a man who could have been good had he not been driven by perceived wrongs done to him and people like him.  His actions were taken to further his individual agenda without regard to the consequences it would bring to the people his position called him to lead. The third was a man who saw the flaws of the first king and the dangers presented by the other. His goal was to right the wrongs he saw, protect the people he led, and assist his global neighbors as he could.

The latter sounds pretty righteous to me.

Michael Ondrasik and Home Video Studio of Mount Dora specialize in the preservation of family memories. For more information, call 352-735-8550 or visit www.homevideostudio.com/mtd.