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Creation — the film, Darwin & some helpful resources

27 September, 2009


This past Friday saw the UK release of the much-anticipated film, Creation — staring Paul Bettany and Jennifer Connelly (who are, in “real life” husband and wife).  See Official movie web site The film is directed by Jon Amiel, who directed both The Man Who Knew Too Little (1997), the satirical comedy with Bill Murray, and the TV mini-series The Singing Detective (1986).

Creation is going to raise the temperature in the never ending battle between “creationists” and “evolutionists” (appreciating  that these two terms are infuriatingly difficult to define with precision).  The film covers the period just before 1858 when The Origin of Species was published.  The film poignantly reveals the love between Charles Darwin (Bettany) and Darwin’s wife, Emma (Connelly) — a love that attempted to carry the huge burden of their differences.  Darwin was not an atheist but rather, according to his own expressions, agnostic.  Emma, on the other hand, was a devout and thoughtful Christian.  You can already sense one theme within the film.

Let me warmly encourage folk to take advantage of the excellent work produced by the folk at Damaris — a UK work that helps people engage with contemporary culture (notably but not exclusively film).  They’ve come up with good resources for individuals, churches and small groups to watch the film, respond to the film and undertake good, sane and productive conversations.  See Culturewatch from Damaris

In this posting I’ve linked to a good article by Tony Watkins, whose reflections on this film (and others) is very helpful.

In as much as there is a big business surrounding the “evolution v creation” battle, along with the consummate culture wars involved, this film will contribute in a big way.  Ideally, it would be good if the film contributed to better dialogue and conversation amongst us.  I’m enough of a realist (or do I really mean cynic?) to think it will probably end up hardening people on either side of the line.  This will be a shame.  But check out the Damaris resources, see the film and get a group of people together to talk about it!

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