Family-Friendly Films: Sabotaged to be Supplanted

While laws can influence culture in ways great and small, the usual way of things is that culture informs the law. By culture I mean that alloy made of the a society’s aspirations, desires, fears, and biases. These are what they hold important. It is the stuff their art and media is made of. And by law I mean not only the letters of the laws that are passed, but how they are passed, and how they are enforced…or not, as the case may be. Right now there are a lot of people across the political spectrum who are anxious to control the law because they don’t understand that the winner of this cycle of political battle we’re in right now has already been decided by the culture (especially the art and media) of the 80s, 90s, and before.

So when we look at a smear campaign by the pink mafia that causes the destruction of a TV show about brothers flipping houses for in-need families on the HGTV network,

HGTV announced on its Facebook page Wednesday that it was scrapping plans for the upcoming series after a report emerged identifying one of its stars as an activist against gay marriage and abortion. After the CNN interview, David told Deadline he and his brother had been “really excited” about the reality series, thinking it would give them “that opportunity to show America that you can be Christian and not be so extreme on one side of an issue that you’re not loving toward people. I was excited about that opportunity,” he said.

we’re looking at secondary explosions of a bomb that went off in previous decades. Those decades gave us cable and wealth. They gave us the housing market boom that increased homeowner envy, incited irrational exuberance for building more and bigger houses, created the glut that makes flipping houses a thing people believe anyone can get into, and the Internet makes all this knowledge available. Without those things, you don’t even have a show about flipping houses to be cancelled; or even an HGTV to cancel it. And sometime before all that: Homes and gardens–the church buildings of the family–became the cultural domain of homosexual men. We should not be surprised that two straight white men’s[3]  show about helping actual families (Dad, Mom, and kids) live together got caught in the blast.

The Good News: At least one man has heard the call to arms. His name’s John Erwin, and he’s not going to let the next generations suffer the same fate.

Erwin, whose new film “Moms’ Night Out” opens in theaters nationwide Friday, lambasted the industry for failing to take the time to consider the social consequences of distributing messages rooted in rampant violence, sex and smut.

[…]

Hollywood, he charged, doesn’t “have a soul anymore” — a paradigm he’s hoping to change through the work he’s doing with his brother, Andrew Erwin. The two co-directed “Moms’ Night Out,” a comedic follow-up to “October Baby,” their dramatic feature film about abortion survival.

The Erwin brothers are taking an entirely different approach.

“There’s no emphasis on anything other than, ‘Does this make money?,’” he charged of studios’ movie-making decisions. “There’s no boardrooms where people are asking, ‘Is ‘Grand Theft Auto’ good for people?’ They only ask, ‘Does it make money?’”

Erwin, a Christian who’s bent on producing films that focus on a fulfilling story or an uplifting message, said it’s long past due for Hollywood to really take the time to pursue a “double bottom line” — that is, creating content that is both financially profitable and ethically sound.

The Bad News: He’s leading F Troop.

Instead of a pretend enemy of equally hapless American Indians, we’re up against a deadly serious new Reich hellbent on slaughter, sodomy…nothing less than general and utter desecration. To see what I mean about leading F Troop, watch this trailer for John Erwin’s film-as-cultural-cannon, “Mom’s Night Out” as it topples the watchtower of patriarchy.

It’s a film about how mothers are over-worked yet under-appreciated, and how if they didn’t labor under this unfair burden all our children would be dead. All the fathers are inept, ignorant, and with one exception completely unappreciative. Even that guy suffers being tied-up and injured to the point of needing an ambulance–and that at the hands of small children. Every single father in the preview tries to weasel out of taking responsibility of his children; either by whining to his wife, checking them into an arcade, and even up to dropping them off at a tattoo parlor.

A bit of good luck there for our surrounded and outnumbered wives, though. Because while tattoo parlors are generally considered dens of slightly-less-iniquity than whorehouses, they also come stocked with presumably (and hopefully!) unmarried and fearless bikers who will stick by those wives no matter what to save those kids. Good thing, too, because the dads are too busy bumbling, hiding, and healing up from their traumatic experiences in babysitting to be of any help whatsoever. The necessity of the bikers is depicted in the clips where the bikers are leading even the police in the rescue, and will not hesitate to rough up another idiot father who stands in the way of their mission.

The snippet that really drives home the beautiful alliance of the bikers and the wives…

Did I forget to mention those wives are also smoking hot when they’re not being kept down by the idiot bastards to whom they’re married?

…is when they show the massive and tattoo’d leader[1] of the bikers sitting with the wife in the little black dress at the police station. Bikers–as everybody knows–aren’t only in it with your wife for the excitement. They’re in it for the long haul of fretful nights, too. One imagines those bikers could be in all kinds of things for wives.

There’s your Family-Friendly Film warriors at work; bringing us an “ethically sound”, clean and relatively painless lethal injection of fatherhood that frees up wives to have real adventures, sexy bikers, great clothes, the joy of kids…everything.

Before some wiseguy cracks that I haven’t even seen the movie yet, and so I can’t know what I’m talking about: You’ve not only missed the point of my post, but the point of movie trailers altogether.

Later in the Blaze interview I linked above, John Erwin says:

“There was a day when Hollywood really had a moral fiber in my opinion, that there was clear good versus evil and there were rules for what could and could not be portrayed,” he told TheBlaze. “I love comedy, but it stinks that there are so few comedies that I can go and see.”

Erwin said it’s unfortunate that so many people of faith are put in positions in which they need to sacrifice their values in order to get a good laugh, many times feeling like they “want to take a bath afterwards.”

[…]

“We’re going off a cliff in the kind of content we’re creating,” Erwin said. “My appeal to everyone in Hollywood is, can we please clean up our act?”

Tell me about it, Captain Parmenter.[2]

Edited to include footnote [3], which is out of order.

[1] Played by country singer Trace Adkins. Trace is 6’5″ and has family values written all over him. He’s sold millions of albums filled with dozens of songs about himself, been married and divorced three times, and has had at least five children by at least two women. (His groupies declined to comment during the calls I didn’t make for clarification.) 

[2] For those of you in the mood to take another beating, check out this clip of the creators of this film talking about why and how they made it. One pitch for the movie–by the co-writer, director, and brother to John: Andrew Erwin–is such a farce that I will transcribe it here:

It’s this feel-good, empowering story, and it’s really about a husband and wife fighting for each other and fighting for their family. And I hope there’s just this resounding message to moms to keep going; just keep going; just keep doing what you’re doing[…]

  1. It’s not a story about a husband and wife fighting together, but rather wives, their friends, and bikers.
  2. Keep going towards what? Divorce, girls’-nights-out, and bikers, presumably.

[3] As I have already received and deleted one off-target racial comment meant to redirect from my post to a discussion about race, let me make my inclusion of white clear. It matters in this case because NAMs, when attacked, can always resort to their Aggreivance Protection Policy to abjure the haters. In the alternate reality where everything is the same except the twins are black, their show is still in production. But if you’re a white guy: There’s no APP for that. I’m not particularly upset about that, either. Find the black dudes who are housing and supporting families and put them on the air.

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83 thoughts on “Family-Friendly Films: Sabotaged to be Supplanted

  1. Kind of puts a new meaning on the “g” in your HGTV, don’t it?

    the winner of this cycle of political battle we’re in right now has already been decided by the culture (especially the art and media) of the 80s, 90s, and before.

    It all comes down to the very human cycle of dissatisfaction and discontentment. More, next, what my neighbor has….

    I don’t know that you can really pinpoint a spot on the timeline, except perhaps that terribly inconvenient day in the Garden. I try not to blame the current era so much for the foibles of humankind since we’ve pretty much always been this way. Like forever. We’re merely being – well – traditional. Modernity is a parasitic hazard to be sure, but it has a willing host, and I sense a temptation to excuse bad behavior these days, and deflect responsibility, because of all those pesky “influences” – as if there weren’t adulterers, rebellious wives, baby murderers, heretics, plunderers and occasion for sin until 1965. Or 1925. Or 1895. Or 1492. Or whenever it was we got so wretched.

  2. Pingback: These fathers need a wake-up call. | Dalrock

  3. Like forever. We’re merely being – well – traditional. Modernity is a parasitic hazard to be sure, but it has a willing host, and I sense a temptation to excuse bad behavior these days, and deflect responsibility, because of all those pesky “influences” – as if there weren’t adulterers, rebellious wives, baby murderers, heretics, plunderers and occasion for sin until 1965. Or 1925. Or 1895. Or 1492. Or whenever it was we got so wretched.

    Well said. The very recent conversation right here about the state of things when Judges 19-21 was recorded drives home this very point.

  4. Pingback: “Moms’ Night Out” may be 2014′s “Fireproof” | Patriactionary

  5. Liberating woman from the “patriarchy” has been popular since Henrik Ibsen’s plays, especially A Doll’s House. Of course, the “patriarchy” is what honors and protects women from the unforgiving real world.

    [CC: Welcome.]

  6. @Velvet and Elspeth

    Modernity is a parasitic hazard to be sure, but it has a willing host

    Yes. When people in this neck of the web-woods use the terms “liberalism” and “modernity”, I usually find they’re talking about sin and sin nature.

    @Deti

    My pleasure.

    In other news: This post generated two pingbacks (Hooray!) and two unfollows (Boo!). Plus ca change…

  7. His initial premise is false anyway, so it’s no surprise that he goes so wrong. Hollywood cares a great deal about message, and frequently sacrifices profit in favor of message. It just has a different idea of what message is “good for people” than he (thinks he) does. That’s why the massive success of Gibson’s Passion wasn’t followed up by a slew of bible movies.

    As for whether you can judge a movie by its trailer, there’s a quote I keep handy for such occasions:

    “‘You never can judge a book by its cover.’ Which is true, but if you then open the book, and the first page is nonsense and curse words and a picture of a woman doing physiologically inadvisable and unhygienic things in a bathtub, you are allowed to assume the book is not for you. You don’t have to read the whole book to figure that out.”

  8. Chick flix need testosterone. Are these children miracles of life, given.their “fathers” appear to be eunuchs? The bikers are the only masculinity in the trailer, and the result is more comic, clownish, than Ironic, even if the clowns are the scary, insane, evil versions.

  9. What is different today is illustrated by how shocking the way Ransom defeats the demon possessed Weston on/in Perelandra. He literally beats him to death. After days of useless yacking.
    That Abortion went on longer than the Berlin wall is telling. Today, more people worry about Muslims to the point they support the TSA rape and worse, but shrug as Molech has his daily fill of thousands of innocents.
    Courage and fortitude are lost. The.masculine virtues are relabeled vices.
    Then any opposition is blunted by insisting on procedure and the lesser evil and nothing happens. Finding something like Al Queda which is safe to oppose and attack as a diversion is better since our lack of action on the camel can be taken out on the gnat. Especially since.we.will sell our souls to the devil to defeat this threat.
    Putting out the witch’s fire.with your bare foot would.be impolite as well as painful, so we lack a modern Puddleglum – not because we fear the pain, but that the witch would say “shamey, shamey, shamey” in a derisive tone, not noticing all of heaven considers the inaction even more shameful.

  10. @ Cane

    “secondary explosions of a bomb”

    That’s called a sympathetic detonation. When one explosive detonates, the atmospheric over-pressure it generates can compress other explosives enough that they too detonate. Sympathetic detonation depends on the net explosive weight and proximity of both explosives in relation to each other.

    That’s an excellent analogy for what is happening in our culture. I’ll have to use it!

  11. Is it just my opinion, or are films/shows like this that use tropes so worn out that we don’t notice it, and then slap them with a “Christian” or “Moral” or “Family” label ultimately more subversive than the intentionally provocative stuff about gay cowboys eating pudding? It’s as if when this stuff is run through a filter and given its badge or morality many people shut off any critical thinking and accept it carte blanche.

  12. I remember a story off some manosphere site about a year ago where a father was with his young son at an event and a mother was making funny jokes at the expense of men to her daughter and giving them dirty looks.

    The father said very loudly along the lines of “son, we don’t need to put women down to feel better about ourselves”

    Obviously, it promptly shut her up. The sentiment is the same. The post-feminist media, churchianity, society, etc. likes to put men down to feel better about themselves or make jokes.

    Why? Maybe it’s low hanging fruit. Maybe it’s what sells. In reality it’s just sad.

  13. Pingback: Quote of the Day- May 16th, 2014 | Donal Graeme

  14. While this really is an excellent analysis, I’d rebut it with the proposition that Hollywood is so dysfunctional that no normal person ought to expect anything but an accurate reflection of the lifestyles of all the people involved in it. I don’t waste too much time on Hollywood films, and when I do burn 90 minutes in the cinema, I certainly don’t take any personal advice from the narratives therein. Anyone (man or woman) who thinks that a commercial feature film offers good advice on how to live his/her life is either crazy or incredibly stupid.

    The best thing anyone can do, for their own personal and mental well-being, is to pay no attention to the late-capitalist-shopping-mall-utopia, its culture industry, and all the trashy, desublimated erotica it is constantly vomiting forth.

    Anyway, good review. It looks so ridiculous I almost want to go see it, now. lol

  15. @Kilrud

    Is it just my opinion, or are films/shows like this that use tropes so worn out that we don’t notice it, and then slap them with a “Christian” or “Moral” or “Family” label ultimately more subversive than the intentionally provocative stuff about gay cowboys eating pudding? It’s as if when this stuff is run through a filter and given its badge or morality many people shut off any critical thinking and accept it carte blanche.

    I definitely agree that this sort of film is far more dangerous than its secular counterpart. At least Eat Pray Love was understood as being divorce fantasy, while Fireproof was seen a representing authentic Christian marriage, for example.

    However, I don’t think it is just a case of us not recognizing the same secular message dressed up as “Christian”. I think the problem is far worse; movies like this are telling us what we (collectively) already believe. The idea that husbands/fathers are fools at best and a menace at worst is so thoroughly accepted by modern Christians that it is essentially doctrine. This is the real reason why every time a Christian movie maker sets out to create a movie about men/women/the family they can’t help but create something anti-biblical. They don’t believe in the Bible on these topics, and neither does their modern Christian audience.

  16. When I was younger and whenever I was in trouble by my parents I could do this one thing to mitigate how mad my parents were at me, and how harsh their punishment was.

    It was genius, or at least I thought so at the time.

    I would pre-emptively point out something bad my brothers or sisters did. If my parents are focused on another person’s wrongs, then they can’t be focused on mine and in their hysteria might even overlook mine.

    Then by continually doing this, they didn’t even suspect me anymore. Since I called out my siblings bad habits and things, how could I be bad myself?

    The people of the Bible knew us humans have an inclination to point out the sin others were doing, as if it somehow excused us from the sin we ourselves were doing. All the do not judge teachings are not meant to excuse another person’s sin, but rather to make sure we aren’t using other people’s sins to excuse our own. To put it simply, are we washed in the righteousness that is Jesus’ blood or are we washing ourselves with more filth?

  17. Here we go again! Another fine example of churchian family values (much like focus on the female’s values).

  18. Boxer

    It Isnt that people take advice from the films. Dalrock addresses this somewhat it his comment above. It is that they do NOT take offense. It desensitizes them to it, it makes it normative to perceive the world through that lens that portrays men as such. This is worse than offering advice, taken or not taken for the express reason it CAN be taken or not. If you begin to, at a point in time, blur an artistic image every time its shown, the fact that it was once a crystal clear image leaves the collective mind of the populace. Eventually they are left pinching their chins and raving about the beauty of the blurred image, the skill and insight needed to blur an image, blur is good! Before long new images are blurred intentionally because people seek what other people say they liked.

    Then someone shows up with a clear image and the people find it peculiar.

  19. Great post, Cane.

    Empath…I just read that review…and my opinion of FamilyLIfe just took a dive. Too bad, too, for their “Weekends to Remember” have dramatically improved in quality over the years.

    Haven’t seen the movie, but if the trailer is representative of the whole film, it’s reprehensible. More than that in fact, for I’m reminded of the following saying: “Once is chance, twice is coincidence, and three times is enemy action”.

    Fireproof, Courageous, and now this? I’m convinced that these so-called “Christian movies”, two lies in one, are subversive mind-bombs meant to bypass the usual Christian defenses against liberalist trash-films.

  20. Anyone have any 2nd degree contacts to them you might want to direct them here and say, “look I’m happy you tried but think about it the way this article presents the problem.” Most times I think you would be surprised how well connected you are.

  21. Though not even remotely family friendly I have liked the first season of Vikings on Amazon. The father is competent. And while not peaceable he is honorable.. The mother while having go girl moments largely listens to her husband even if a physical fight is required (interesting surprise attack scene where he wins even though she is armed…which is surprisingly rare…). Christianity is treated fairly well in that while it isn’t perfect is more desirable than pagan slaughter. And the season’s no music closer on the mockery of martyrdom I thought was so amazingly well done that I began to suspect a crypto-Catholic running the writing team.

  22. @Dalrock & Kilrud

    “I definitely agree that this sort of film is far more dangerous than its secular counterpart.”

    Absolutely. Especially with all these “pro-family”, “Christian” organizations pushing it.

    @Gkchesterton

    “Christianity is treated fairly well in that while it isn’t perfect is more desirable than pagan slaughter.”

    Really? I don’t see that, but I could be wrong. You’re right, though, that they present Ragnar as supremely competent, cunning and powerful (in every sense of the word). They also seem to present him as a good father (as much as an immoral man can be), but a crappy husband. What do you think?

  23. “Yes. When people in this neck of the web-woods use the terms “liberalism” and “modernity”, I usually find they’re talking about sin and sin nature.”

    True, but your average family-values “conservative” has also been culturally cuckolded into “conserving” that sin nature rather than the gospel which was his birthright.

    “I began to suspect a crypto-Catholic running the writing team”

    That or Progs re-inventing the wheel from scratch unburdened by the false values churchians are intent on conserving.

  24. @Empath

    From the review you linked:

    One particular interaction—the pivotal moment in the film, in fact—involves some pearls of wisdom from a very unlikely source, changing Ally’s perspective on herself and motherhood.

    Bet that’s the scene with Trace Adkins and the mother in the waiting area.

    @EW

    Thanks! And welcome.

    Fireproof, Courageous, and now this?

    According to that review: Alex Kendrick–one of the makers of “Fireproof” and “Courageous”–is in “Mom’s Night Out”.

    @GKC

    Though not even remotely family friendly I have liked the first season of Vikings on Amazon.

    I watched the first season too, and didn’t care for it. He’s an all right father (pagan-settings considered), but a lousy husband. I suppose we can put his son’s discovery of his affair into the lousy husband category, but the relationship with the son was shown to be damaged. Had to have a bit of anti-father angst, I suppose.

    What really turned me off was:

    1)The grrl power was way too strong on that show. Women Vikings? I don’t think so. And inconsistent except to favor modern female sensibilities; outrage at rape during a rape and pillage mission, etc.

    2) The Viking swingers thing was weird, and I’ve never heard of it being a thing.

    3) The show was gratuitous in the way porn is, instead of like HBO’s “Rome’s” gratuitous reality.

    But what do I know? I think Game of Thrones sucks.

  25. @Dalrock

    “He’s an all right father (pagan-settings considered), but a lousy husband.”

    Ragnar is good at being manly, but he’s not a good man.

  26. @Gkchesterton

    Anyone have any 2nd degree contacts to them you might want to direct them here and say, “look I’m happy you tried but think about it the way this article presents the problem.” Most times I think you would be surprised how well connected you are.

    I’m assuming you are talking about Family Life’s enthusiasm for the movie. If I’m understanding you correctly, the premise is if someone only pointed out how profoundly unbiblical all of this is, they would of course see the err of their ways. I think this is worth pointing out (if someone here has the opportunity), but I wouldn’t expect them to be receptive to the feedback. The first problem is that the anti married father message this movie is selling is something FL is selling every day, especially on Father’s Day (along with FotF and pretty much every pastor out there). Contempt for married fathers is worn like a badge of honor, proving that they are the good guys.

    The other challenge is arguably even more difficult. What Cane has deftly pointed out in his review are the insidious sexual undertones of the movie. A lesser blogger would have gotten bogged down for paragraphs in the anti head of the household aspects of the movie. Cane noted these but didn’t let them take him off target from the sexual sin this movie is selling. This works in our corner of the blogosphere, because nearly everyone here accepts that women:

    1) Have a sexual nature.
    2) That nature is subject to sin just as men’s sexual nature is.

    Good luck explaining items 1&2 to someone outside the sphere. Notice how Family Life described the women dressing up in short dresses and high heels and going to trendy clubs without their husbands as them enjoying “a laid-back night on the town”. Ask any pickup artist how fortunate they feel when they find women on a “girls night out” (the title of the movie is expertly tuned to evoke the phenomenon while seeming like a perfectly innocent “mom” activity). Likewise, try explaining the significance of the 6 ft 4 biker bad boy. Modern Christian men know that women don’t have a sexual nature, and if they do their nature is to seek out only good men and commitment. They simply won’t be able to see it.

  27. Thanks for putting up he trailer. I don’t normally go to comedies but I’m going to ask my husband to take me today. A close friend of mine is good friends with the Erwin brothers and their parents. I know we see everything through the eye of Red Pill and all but there is truth also in that trailer.

  28. Good luck explaining items 1&2 to someone outside the sphere. Notice how Family Life described the women dressing up in short dresses and high heels and going to trendy clubs without their husbands as them enjoying “a laid-back night on the town”.

    Yep. I don’t do girls nights out- ever. I go out to lunch or coffee during the day with with female friends. The girls’ outing today was out to a sale to comb over discount homeschool curriculum. Good fun!

    A married woman doesn’t need to dress up in high heels and a short dress if not going out with her husband. Period. And Christian filmmakers/ministries really shouldn’t be encouraging it under any other circumstances.

    I highly doubt FL leader Dennis Rainey would encourage his wife to put on a short dress and head out for a night of partying with the girls.

  29. Pingback: Every night is Mom’s night when Dad lives under a bridge | Feminism is Empathological

  30. I don’t expect magic Dalrock but if we don’t try we’ve failed. We are bound by Christ’s commands regardless of their response. And having made the attempt we become more free to point out errors.

    As to Vikings the swinger scene (with a slave!!!) was just stupid. But the emptiness of paganism is portrayed in a deft manner. The Christians are “soft” but if I was a space alien and only knew Christianity from paganism via Vikings I’d hope to land at a Christian town. It is also not historically accurate but tries fairly hard.

  31. @Dalrock

    Good luck explaining items 1&2 to someone outside the sphere. Notice how Family Life described the women dressing up in short dresses and high heels and going to trendy clubs without their husbands as them enjoying “a laid-back night on the town”.

    How did I miss that? Laid-back…

    @Ouida

    I don’t normally go to comedies but I’m going to ask my husband to take me today. A close friend of mine is good friends with the Erwin brothers and their parents.

    I think you should send him a link to my post when you ask him. If truth is your concern, there’s more here than in that trailer.

    If you’re really brave: Send your friend the link, and ask her/him to forward it to the Erwin brothers.

    I know we see everything through the eye of Red Pill and all but there is truth also in that trailer.

    I guess you can find out how concerned you are about the truth if you forward this to your husband and friend.

    @GKC

    It would be awesome if they read this, and now I know their are apparently two people here within two degrees of the Erwin brothers and Family Life.

    And GoT is depressing even if otherwise well done. The best sorts dislike it.

    Martin is a misanthrope (particularly concerning men) who doesn’t understand human interactions. The two are probably related.

  32. Cane,

    I will tell my friend what I thought of the movie. Red Pill views and all. I will also ask her if she wants to forward your message to the Erwin brothers.

    I shared with my husband your invitation. He declined.

  33. @Ouida

    I will also ask her if she wants to forward your message to the Erwin brothers.

    Excellent!

    You have twice mentioned Red Pill now, but I’m not really part of that gang. I used to have a link at the top of my blog called “What is the Red Pill?” It went to a picture of Adam and Eve eating the the forbidden fruit. I took it down because it confused people more than it helped them.

    Suppose the Blue Pill is Plato’s cave. In general, I try not to use the cant of the Men’s Sphere because I think it encourages many to find another cave rather than to live out in the world.

  34. Cane….just my opinion but, use or don’t use a cant based on the efficacy of it as a descriptor. The bigger downfall, I think, of using the terms for expedience ( which I think is more common than folks wanting to be in-group) is that it’s cliquish. It’s off putting and unhelpful. Helpful is what we ought to be. Those who want to find a cave are going to do so because it is their nature. I suppose some folks are on the margin, but the cave seekers will move along until they get the in-group feedback they seek. And there are lots worse groups to get that feeling from, especially if they have the ability to distinguish between Christians and Christian motive and just “clubishness”

    Suppose both red and blue pill are Laplaces demon. What with all the predictions of the collapse, or the utopia yet to come its a viable metaphor.

  35. @Empath

    Lots to respond to there.

    First, I’d say that “in-group” and “cliquish” are the same thing, and yes it’s off-putting and unhelpful.

    As you say: Those who want to find a cave will, but that doesn’t mean I have to show them the entrance. It’s not out of my way to avoid the cant. Newcomers don’t understand it anyways. It leads to sloppy thinking; including on my part. (How many times have I just jumped straight to “rationalization hamster” and ended my investigation there instead of sorting out what is being rationalized, how, and why?)

    I suspect that Ouida is one of those who can’t distinguish between Christians, Christian motive, and the Christian club. Hence: She wants to see “Mom’s Night Out”.

    Maybe she just doesn’t want to distinguish? Doubtful.

    The desire is almost surely related to your comment on the lure of NSFW. Lot’s of “truth” in NSFW stuff, too. Contrary to local belief: Everybody loves the idea of a Red Pill. People want to distinguish for themselves.

  36. I referenced Red Pill as a way of saying I know what to look for. I’ve come to hate the term for the most part. I don’t have another way of describing the thought process though so I continue to use that phrase.

    I recognize that this site is not really Red Pill as much as Truth as you see it. I notice that if a new commenter makes a comment that is contrary to what the blog represents then it is automatically assumed the person is uneducated of these Truths or red pill or whatever said blog supports.

    Regarding me seeing the movie; I distinguish things just fine. I’m not good with words enough to try to explain that though. And I am not going to even try to act like I understand ALL that is said. Elspeth is years ahead of me in knowledge. I recognize that aspect as well.

    I’m curious how the movie would have been pleasing to you. I asking this honestly. These sites I read, like yours, point out the errors of the Churches ways. I agree we are on a certain kind of path. However, some of your arguments I don’t understand. If they would have portrayed the fathers as strong men who wanted the wife to go off for a night, what would you have said then? Some of your comment was about motherhood and how we sacrifice for it. There is truth to this so why would you try to use it as part of the argument that the movie was unChristian? Parents in general sacrifice. I know you didn’t see the movie but I will tell you, it was not all bad. I hated they portrayed the fathers as bumbling idiots. That is tired and cliched. The women didn’t go to any clubs. They tried to go to a nice restaurant. They didn’t hit on any men. They all loved their husbands. Yes everyone had a nice house. I don’t know why that is a issue. There was a couple of gems in there.

    I identified with the main character in a couple ways. When my babies were little, I stressed a lot. I thought I was going to screw them up if I didn’t do this or that. But it is all a process. We grow little by little. God gives grace and mercy and picks us back up. He only expects us to be what He created us for. Did the Erwin brothers not do it your way? Of course. They are living truth according to how they see it. It may be wrong on very important points but that is why you are here; to correct the errors in the parts they did get wrong. I commend you for it, even when I get irritated that you guys only see the negative. I know it seems like I’m on the other side of what you promote. I’m not. I do think having lived grace and mercy I understand that we all are getting there as God pulls us to Him. Not everyone has the benefit of having their act together. I know I didn’t.

  37. Pedant alert:

    Cliquish and in-group difference (according to me) is that cliques form for reasons of similarity in all manner of things, socio economic, athletic, attractive, smart, whatever, where in-group is about an ideology shared, or frame, or belief set. At least thats why I made them separate, right or wrong per Mr Webster

  38. @Cane–“According to that review: Alex Kendrick–one of the makers of “Fireproof” and “Courageous”–is in “Mom’s Night Out”.

    Does this mean that one of the husbands will have a “pornography addiction”? ooh, maybe they’ll have a vow ceremony or the husband will be told he’s not a good dad because he works too much? I can’t wait to see it! (sarcasm)

    but seriously, if I was back in college we could make all these Christian movies into a drinking game… lol

  39. And I am not going to even try to act like I understand ALL that is said. Elspeth is years ahead of me in knowledge. I recognize that aspect as well.

    Hmph. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that I have everything figured out, Dear Ouida. I do not. I certainly had a head start in some of this by virtue of being raised in a “red pill” culture (for lack of a better term as I don’t really care for that expression either).

    But that culture was and is marked by dysfunction and chaos and I can’t pretend it hasn’t affected me. You know my spiel. What use I have turned out to be is because of God, my husband and my father.

    As for the film, which I have not watched, keep in mind that the general point of the discussion around these parts is the denigration and diminishing value of masculinity amongst Christians. Because of that you should expect a pretty severe critique of a film that contributes to that dynamic, even inadvertently. We should take care not to do that, even inadvertently is the point. We’re supposed to act with more deliberateness, awareness, and intent.

    I alluded to this at Empath’s, but in our house my husband is a highly competent father. The children do more than thrive when left with him in my absence. They thrive. And they usually have more fun.

    Now I know there is no money to be made making movies about boring families like mine where the man actually knows what he’s doing and may even be better than his wife at keeping house if the situation called for him to do that.

    But having been raised in that dysfunctional black culture I mentioned above, actually seen a few men raising their own kids in the wake of a neglectful, addicted, serially adulterous party girl wife, and those kids, in every case, seemed to have more structure, discipline, and attention paid to them than the kids I saw being raised by their mothers. Someone should make a movie about those guys.

    Motherhood can be challenging. I remember well the stress of being a mom of multiple littles. Yes, it is a hard season with the sleeplessness, never being able to pee alone, and looking haggard more than I’d like. But that season passed in a relatively few years, while the demands on my husband to work more and more and provide more and more only grew more and more.

    No one acknowledges nor represents this, including Christian filmmakers. And then they wonder why Christian women, in their “overwhelmed” state, feel justified in wallowing in their unhappiness and torpedo their marriages because their husbands don’t appreciate them enough for all they do.

    That was quite a diatribe from someone who hasn’t even seen the movie, LOL. I’ll catch it on DVD when it comes out and then give thought to whether I am totally off base here.

  40. Someone should make a movie about those guys.

    I just remembered that Tyler Perry has included these type men in at least two of his movies, maybe three. But I don’t like his films nor anything he stands for.

    Someone else should make a movie about those guys, LOL.

  41. Cane, this is the last comment for today, on my honor.

    One other thing I hate about the “moms need a break” movies. They almost always equate being a mother of little ones with being a mother of school-aged, tween, or teenaged children.

    It’s always the toughest job in the world, the demands are endless and draining, right up until the kids head off for college. Total B.S.

    I watch just such a movie last night with my kids, Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves. Terrible movie, but it was family friendly.

    Rants over.

  42. @Elspeth

    Because of that you should expect a pretty severe critique of a film that contributes to that dynamic, even inadvertently. We should take care not to do that, even inadvertently is the point.

    Exactly right.

    @Ouida

    I hated they portrayed the fathers as bumbling idiots. That is tired and cliched.

    Literary tricks are tired and cliche. The consistent portrayal fathers as ignorant and unsexy boobs who do not appreciate wives and mothers is an indoctrination program. It seems to have worked on you.

    You’re just wrong here. Not because you’re new, but because you’ve said some foolish things. You’ve made a defense of a movie that set out to erode fathers and husbands. You made this defense of the film because it empathizes with and praises women. In other words: You’ve made yourself a schmuck who can be led around by the nose, and it’s going to take you and your family to the slaughter house. These movies incite divorce. Even if you escape divorce, others around you will not. Those divorces are going to impact your marriage, your kids…everyone around them. This movie helps make everyone feel better about it. After all: It’s so tired and cliched how out of touch and unappreciative men are. Everyone knows it’s true, right? That’s what makes a reliable cliche.

    It’s garbage. I told you it’s garbage, and you threw it in my face that you’re going to watch it anyways. And there was no reason for you to say anything. It was just because you wanted to tell me off; to let me know you were challenging me; that you didn’t care what I thought. Then you come back here and tell me that 1) I was right. 2) You’re glad that you did anyway as it made you feel special as a mom because it highlighted all your wives’ troubles and awesomeness.

    Get over yourself.

  43. and it’s going to take you and your family to the slaughter house. These movies incite divorce. Even if you escape divorce, others around you will not. Those divorces are going to impact your marriage, your kids…everyone around them. This movie helps make everyone feel better about it. After all: It’s so tired and cliched how out of touch and unappreciative men are. Everyone knows it’s true, right? That’s what makes a reliable cliche.

    This is the basic motive for anything I describe when i write. By making things into conventional wisdom, worse than a cliche really, it defines what is normative. In the context of the Christian experience a woman has if she is a typical southern gal especially, she is raised with built in marital obsolescence because of the expectations they build into her. these movie portrayals simply add to those expectations.

    Oh its just a movie she says?

    Yes, and romance novels are just books, divorce porn like EPL are just movies, and porn is just pixels. Which one is (rightly) vile and evil? Which are not? why are those perceptions as they are?

    Because of this comprehensive brainwashing that no one seems to even realize is occurring much like the fish doesn’t know it is wet.

  44. I didn’t say you were right. The movie didn’t “set out to” erode fathers. You saw a trailer and made a judgment call. The intent of the movie was something else but because I disagree with you then you tell me get over myself. I find it amusing you didn’t respond to my questions but rather wrote me off because you felt I challenged you. You are not interested so much in building the family as you are getting due recognition for what fathers/men contribute to this world. I’m pretty sure that’s calls that pride. Get over yourself.

    I made the mistake of commenting in the first place. You can be sure that won’t happen again.

  45. @Ouida

    I didn’t say you were right.

    Not in those words, but yes you did. Par for the course, though.

    The movie didn’t “set out to” erode fathers.

    Yes they did. The Erwin brothers werent under compulsion, and they weren’t transcribing real events. ‘t is a piece of fiction. They set out to make up a comedy of the average Christian family, then they made up the story. A large part of what they set out and made up is how average fathers are idiots.

    You saw a trailer and made a judgment call.

    And it’s unsurprising that the sort of person who doesn’t understand what movie trailers are for (giving a gist so that a judgment call can be made) doesn’t understand anything I’ve said up to and including this comment.

    The intent of the movie was something else

    No, it wasn’t. You’re confusing what the makers say they intended with what they actually intended. Newsflash: People lie to cover their true motivations.

    but because I disagree with you then you tell me get over myself.

    I told you to get over yourself because you need to get over yourself. You’re having a make-out session with yourself in my comments.

    I find it amusing you didn’t respond to my questions but rather wrote me off because you felt I challenged you.

    No, you found it frustrating and possibly infuriating. This is an example of the kind of lies people tell when they want don’t want you to understand their motivations.

    You are not interested so much in building the family as you are getting due recognition for what fathers/men contribute to this world.

    This is the money quote right here.

    1) Due recognition is called “justice”, and we serve a just God.

    2) Your subliminal message is that I’m somehow against mothers getting due recognition. This is at least the third time you’ve brought it up. Yet I’m not. I haven’t said anything against mothers or motherhood. Do you know why? Because due recognition for mothers isn’t at odds with due recognition for fathers. But you do not actually believe that. You believe that it’s necessary to push one down to raise up the other–as do the Erwin and Kendrick brothers; if they can be judged by their movies. And they can be judged by their movies because both sets of brothers have made it clear that they make movies with specific intents. It is their ministry. Well, it’s a ministry of garbage. You, Ouida, like garbage.

    I’m pretty sure that’s calls that pride. Get over yourself.

    You’re projecting. You–who sees it as acceptable to push fathers down as long as women are made to feel good–have foolishly assumed that since I want to see fathers exalted (Did you know God has revealed Himself to us as Father?) that I am like you; that I think it would be preferable to put mothers down. I don’t, and there’s not a shred of evidence from me to support the idea. You made it up because everything around is but a mirror upon which to reflect your own image.

    Now that’s pride, woman.

    I made the mistake of commenting in the first place.

    I must imagine that is quite a painful mistake for you to have made. Spankings are that way: painful, humiliating, misunderstood…just everything a self-centered person really can’t stand.

    You can be sure that won’t happen again.

    As we say in Texas: Don’t let the door hit ya where the good Lord split ya.

  46. Hollywood only had any morality when the Christians stood up to the non-Christians running the show in the form of the League of Decency and got them to hide their real feelings about sexual morality, America, and much else.

    [CC: Welcome.]

  47. Just saw new X-men movie (C+) and in the trailers before the film was a promo for the new Transformers.

    The hero-lead character (Mark Wahlberg) is a father of a teenaged daughter whom he has to rescue/protect from the villains and I’m pretty sure he’s single.

    Once again a father without added title of husband is the focus.

  48. LOL, No. I was thinking about what you said about movies not liking married fathers. Wasn’t that here where you said that? Maybe it was Dalrock’s. My bad.

    Anyways… you mentioned Homeland, and Taken, which also aren’t Christian/family based films.

    But if I’m totally derailing the desired theme, pardonmme.

  49. @Elspeth

    Sorry, it was a joke along the lines of: “Hey, a strong sexy father that saves his daughter and appeals to women: Must be a Christian movie!”

    Wait…do they cuss? If they cuss, then it’s definitely not of the spirit.

  50. “Hey, a strong sexy father that saves his daughter and appeals to women: Must be a Christian movie!”

    Must be, LOL. I might go see it. Nah, probably not. Mark Wahlberg is no Hugh Jackman. I’ll wait for the DVD.

    But seriously, I never really noticed before how often hero fathers are single. It went right past me before you made mention of it. Not sure why.

  51. Sheesh, I was talking about the quality of the acting, LOL.

    [CC: Haha!]

    Catch you later, Cane.

  52. A married woman doesn’t need to dress up in high heels and a short dress if not going out with her husband. Period. And Christian filmmakers/ministries really shouldn’t be encouraging it under any other circumstances.

    Seeing this glorified in film is particularly disturbing because it’s a bit like returning to the scene(s) of the crime(s) of a woman’s youth – the whole “reclaimed virginity” or “recovered party girl” thing sort of falls apart, doesn’t it, if she hasn’t really rejected the behaviors she’s supposedly recovered from, and in fact seeks them out? If it’s okay to have girls night out, why isn’t it okay to have an illicit affair for old times sake? I know most people draw a hard distinction between the two, but it’s easy to see how that line could get very fuzzy – it’s got “it was just that once and it didn’t mean anything” written all over it. And the man who fails to forgive her “relapse” is going to be labeled a jerk.

    Anyway, now that I’ve written the alternate ending to the script, that model has no business being presented as wholesome, and certainly not Christian.

    As we say in Texas: Don’t let the door hit ya where the good Lord split ya.

    I’m pretty sure you’re the only one who says that.

  53. Cane,

    I tried to find a email address to say this “personally” but couldn’t find one. I apologize for my comments earlier in the thread. I was being rebellious when I made my first comment and I am especially sorry for that. I’m still reflecting on some of your words but overall I came away with a better understanding of things. I ask forgiveness for my actions and attitude.

    Sincerely,
    Ouida Gabriel

  54. @Ouida

    I appreciate that, and you’re welcome to what you asked.

    If you were wondering, your comment was in moderation because you spelled your username differently.

  55. I realized a few days ago I could fix it in wordpress. I didn’t like that it looked like one name instead of my first and middle. Sorry for the trouble on that.

    [CC: No problem. Just wanted you to know it wasn’t related.]

  56. So…..spoliers

    The new Transformers has Bumblebee hookin’ up with some home girl “tranni” called Flatiron. Bolts, washers, and nuts fly. If your thinkin’ Optimus was prime, jus’ wait.

    The whole thing happens in a junk yard so the random car parts mask the action and PG 13 is maintained. Wahlberg witnesses the whole thing from under a VW bus, a 1966. Its this that affords him the leverage to get ole “bring the pain” out of retirement.

  57. Even feminists can see the rot in this movie. From Dame magazine, Manchildren Are Not Sexy. Neither Are Helpless Dads :

    ‘Moms’ Night Out’ may be a Christian movie, but it’s part of a long cinematic tradition portraying men as useless louts. And that’s not good for anyone.

    Even their criticism of the film for being too conservative reinforces Cane’s analysis:

    What’s the message? Women belong in the home. Men don’t raise children. Sure, they dote on them. But men don’t know how to actually raise them. Also: Women are not allowed to drink, dress sexy, or have a single night free of children or men. The wildest thing that happens in Moms’ Night Out is some bad dancing at a glow-in-the-dark bowling alley (oh, and Patricia Heaton’s character—the preacher’s wife—reveals that she went to Woodstock and has a lower-back tattoo. Crazy!).

  58. Too much to quote, but too good not to quote a bit more (emphasis mine):

    The moral of the story isn’t that the women are supposed to stay home and not have fun, but that the men are totally hapless morons without them around—and that this lesson is still being drilled into our heads in 2014. We’re supposed to feel better about this “men are total idiots, the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world” philosophy (and that latter piece of wisdom was actually uttered in the movie in case you missed the point). But this story of the helpless manchild is a disservice to men—and families—everywhere.

    In the summaries I’ve read that Trace Adkins’ character speaks words of wisdom. Can someone who has seen the movie clarify this; is this the famous line Trace delivers, the one which has Christians everywhere so delighted?

  59. @Dalrock

    oh, and Patricia Heaton’s character—the preacher’s wife—reveals that she went to Woodstock and has a lower-back tattoo. Crazy!).

    Hahahahaha!

  60. I can only imagine how they managed to work those two parts of Heaton’s character into the plot. Did she hike up (or down) her dress to reveal the tattoo? Clearly this was something the author really wanted to include, as Heaton would have been 11 had she attended Woodstock, and there is no good reason I can think of to have a pastor’s wife announce that she sports a tramp stamp. This reinforces Velvet’s excellent point above about returning to the “scene of the crime”.

  61. @Empath

    Two possibilities actually

    1. Its a place. Someone could go there anytime
    2. There was a redo attempt years later

    Got it. I assume she meant the original historical event, but I’m only going by the review of the feminist.

    Either way, the movie went out of its way to ascribe two separate signals of (hopefully former) promiscuity on the leader of the group of women. One could argue that not all women who have tramp stamps act accordingly, etc, but the meaning of the symbols is undeniable, and there is no other reason to include them in a work of fiction like this except as symbols. This would be true even if the character herself states that she’s never been with a man other than her husband; the symbols are clear and were placed on the character for a reason.

  62. I wondered about that myself. I am definitely older than those in the trailer and I was too young to be at the original Woodstock.

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  64. I’ve been racking my brain trying to remember where I’d seen this plot before. It finally hit me. “Moms’ Night Out” is a feature length version of this commercial for the now-defunct Big Dog Motorcycles.

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