Tag Archives: Faith
30 Days Until beatification of Venerable Fr. Michael J. McGivney
My Bible Explained
The Prince of Egypt
“You who I called brother. How could you have come to hate me so? Is this what you wanted? Then let my heart be hardened and never mind how high the cost may grow. This will still be so. I will never let your people go.” – Pharaoh Ramesses II
An ambitious account of the life of Moses and the great Exodus. The Prince of Egypt was DreamWorks first full-length animated film and while based on the biblical story, the film does take many dramatic liberties. However, it still stays true to the book of Exodus. The filmmakers actually place a disclaimer up front which points the viewers to the Bible to find out what actually happened (which impressed me).
The film starts in the middle of the persecution of the Hebrew people by the King of Egypt. He has ordered the execution of the first born male child of all the Hebrew people. The Pharaoh was afraid that if the male numbers grew, one day they the slaves would have enough men to overpower him and flee for freedom.
Jochebed, a Hebrew woman is afraid for her new baby boy. With her daughter Miriam she sets her son afloat inside a whicker basket in the Nile river in hopes for a better life – free from the slaughter that would find him if he were to stay.
Miriam follows the basket until it arrives at of all places the palace of the King and Queen of Egypt. The Queen finds the baby and names him Moses. She adopts him as her own. The film cuts to twenty years later and we see Moses and his adopted brother Rameses playing and causing trouble. They are the Prices of Egypt and are having a grand time. One night, Moses runs into his slave sister Miriam. She confronts Moses and tells him that he is her brother. He is upset and angry at such an accusation, until she starts to sing a lullaby that he remembers.
Moses runs away in search for answers. The Pharaoh, tells Moses it’s the truth, but that matters not because he a Prince of Egypt now. He says not to feel upset, they were only Hebrew children that were killed. Moses is taken back at the callousness in his father’s voice.
This eventually leads to Moses running away and fleeing Egypt into the desert. Here is here’s the voice of God in the Burning Bush telling him to return to Egypt and free the slaves and lead them to freedom. When Moses does finally return to confront the king, he realizes the new Pharaoh is his brother Rameses!
The filmmakers had daunting task ahead of them when they set out to make this film. The story is cherished by billions of people. Christians, Jews and Muslims all hold this story is sacred. It was banned in several Arab countries and caused a lot of controversy at the time of it’s release. The film was all most universally praised but it still contains several very dark themes. The murder of children for instance is confronted head on in the film.
The story of Moses and the great Exodus comes alive in this animated film. It’s very close to a musical, but I don’t think it’s actually classified as one. The music in the film is remarkable is probably my favorite soundtrack of all time. This is a powerful and uplifting story that will show you how miracles can happen if you believe. The scenes of Moses parting the Red Sea are worth the price of admission alone.
- Val Kilmer as Moses
- Ralph Fiennes as Ramesses II
- Patrick Stewart as Pharaoh Seti I
- Michelle Pfeiffer as Zipporah
- Helen Mirrem as Queen Tuya
- Jeff Goldblum as Aaron
- Sandra Bullock as Miriam
- Danny Glover as Jethro
- Steve Martin as Hotep
- Martin Short as Huy
- Ofra Haza as Yocheved
The cast is incredible. You can see from the names above, this is nothing but top notch talent. Jeff Goldbulm was great as Aaron, the brother of Moses. Val Kilmer, the voice of Moses was also the voice used for God. He was extremely reverent and there is nothing sacrilegious at all about his portal. Steve Martin and Martin Short steal many scenes in the film as the two head priests for the Pharaoh.
Ratings and Suggestions
The Prince of Egypt is rated PG for intense depiction of thematic elements. I would recommend this film for the whole family. Even with the darker themes in the movie, it’s nothing graphic and should not stop you from showing your younger children the movie. I strong recommend the film however to adults who want a fresh (or new even) perspective on the story. This is one amazing film, which I happy give four out of four stars.
What Dreams May Come
My Library, Book Reviews – 6AM Reviews
- Title: What Dreams May Come – B&N, Amazon, PBS, Google
- Pages: 288
- Author: Richard Matheson
- Rating: 5/5 – Perfect
What Dreams May Come is one of my favorite books (one of my top five). When Chris Nielsen dies he has a hard time adjusting to his afterlife. His journey to Heaven and through Hell is something every reader should experience.
Matheson spent hours researching near-death experiences and includes all of his work in a detailed bibliography at the end of the book. While he says his book is fictional, he only means the characters and the plot. Everything else he believes is based on facts and hard evidence.
I was going through the death of a loved one when I first read this book, and it helped me beyond measure. Death is not the end, only a new beginning.
Check back tomorrow morning, for another 6AM Review.
“We declare, pronounce and define that the doctrine which holds that the Blessed Virgin Mary, at the first instant of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace of the Omnipotent God, in virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of mankind, was preserved immaculate from all stain of original sin, has been revealed by God, and therefore should firmly and constantly be believed by all the faithful.” – Pope Pius IX, Ineffabilis Deus, December 8, 1854
Michael W. Smith’s 10 Best Songs
I’ve been a fan of Michael W. Smith for a long time. I discovered his music one night at a church lock-in. Laying down in a pew very early in the morning, I pulled out my walkman. My cousin gave me a couple tapes she thought I would enjoy.
The first one was Smith’s “The First Decade.” From the first song, I was hooked. Since then I have acquired every Michael W. Smith CD and have been one of his biggest fans.
I have reviewed all of his songs, (250+) and have compiled his ten best. How did I do? Did I miss your favorite MWS song?
1) I’ll Lead You Home. Picking the number one song was hard. When I had all of his top songs in front of me, this one just stands out. Its simple and powerful message of God’s love is lasting. The slow build up musically is something I really like as well.
2) Kentucky Rose. When I said it was hard to pick a number one song, Kentucky Rose was the reason. And as I sit and listen to the song I realize I may have made a mistake. The song tells the story of a southern preacher who sacrifices his life to save a little boy. Besides telling an amazing story in the five-minute song, it tells of a man who loves God and would do anything to save His children. This may not be as good as I’ll Lead You home, but it’s my personal favorite song.
3) I’ll Be Around. Also from the I’ll Lead You Home CD, this song let’s you know God is always there. Don’t give up on him, because he’ll be around.
4) How to Say Goodbye. A simple, yet powerful song. The utter helplessness of your daughter getting married and moving out I’m sure is overwhelming. The song just pleads and begs for understanding.
5) There She Stands. The song was inspired by President George W. Bush asking MWS to write a song about the tragedy of 9/11. The song is about the American flag and one of the most patriotic songs ever written.
6) Trilogy: Angels Unaware; Breathe In Me; Other Side of Me. The Other Side of Me was the song I dedicated to my wife at our wedding. While technically these are three songs, but really they are just party 1, 2 & 3 of one big song.
7) Grace. With Gods grace, we can do all things.
8) This is Your Time. The song tells the story of Cassie Bernell. She was killed in 1999 school shootings at Columbine High School. Reports say, one of the gun men asked Cassie if she believed in God. When she said yes, she was shot and killed. Would you have the power, the strength to say “yes?”
9) Above All. Probably my favorite praise and worship song. Look at the chorus and MWS shows that while Christ was on the cross, we were on his mind.
10) Agnus Dei. Perhaps it the Catholic in me, but I love this song. Angus Dei is Latin for “Worthy is the Lamb.” This was one of the first songs I learned in sign language. The song seems a perfect fit for Mass, I wonder if any parish has ever used it? It sounds very liturgical when you listen to it.