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25 January 2006

Now we walk his trail

End of the Spear is a must see film, a compelling testament to the power of love and forgiveness over the self replicating cycle of hate and violence.

Prior to my viewing, I was completely unaware of the history of events that comprise the true story behind the movie. But, being based on a true story, I reckon most watchers knew the history and anyway, the story progresses in a most predictable fashion I was able to conjure the exact ending scenario shortly after the beginning. Yet, even so, it was an effective and gripping presentation of the story of the reclusive Waodani tribe's contact with Christian missionaries. Though being a Christian film, it is devoid of preachy prattling, as the creators chose deliberately to reflect Christ as the Waodani came to know him. The center of focus is the Waodani, and their quest to escape the self destructive realm of "spear or be speared". I believe the framing works in a stunning fashion, with the Waodani contemplating those who don't spear back, and how can one "jump the great boa" if not mightier than foes in a physical presence. There is another scene, where the Life Magazine article is given prominent screen space, and sheds a stunning contrast to the understated theme.

Despite being an independent production with what I presume was a relatively low budget, the film is remarkably done, with all the visual splendor of a top notch National Geographic feature, an excellent script and decent acting performances. End of the Spear was filmed in Panama, not Ecuador, due to logistic concerns. None of the leading role actors are well known, and Panamanian natives, coached by Waodani, played many of the Waodani warrior roles.

Some controversy has embroiled the picture some Christians take umbrage at Every Tribe Entertainment's choice to cast a homosexual in the role of a Christian missionary.

7 January 2006

We're being robbed of our freedom of choice because we're not told when the actual movie will begin

By not being provided movie listings that print the start time for the main feature?
Frustrated with lengthy advertisements and previews that delay movies and chew up viewing time, a state lawmaker wants theaters to be honest about when a movie actually starts.

State Rep. Andrew Fleischmann is proposing legislation to force movie listings to print the time the previews start, and when the movies start.

Even if it is an annoying practice that dissuades theater attendance, this probably isn't the best use of legislator resources. Anyway, declining ticket sales, in my estimation, are more due to the lackluster quality of recent releases. And the forecast for 2006 isn't any rosier.

Of course, some argue that the age of the blockbuster is over, given the mushrooming of on-demand content.