5.22.2012

Enemy on the Inside: God in a Guy Ritchie Movie, and Other Thoughts

Last night I re-watched "Revolver"  - a cerebral film masterpiece by Guy Ritchie - for the first time in a few years. I was struck once more, as I was at first viewing, by the powerful beauty of so many of the shots and the mesmerizing performances of Ray LiottaAndre BenjaminMark Strong, and of course, the peerless Jason Statham.

Without a doubt, "Revolver" is a film that forces you to think. I believe I first watched it around the time I graduated from college and had just finished up a couple courses on critical theory (varied frameworks for examining literature and language), so I can't watch this movie without reflecting on Freud and how many people he said potentially dwell in our heads. My ego - the person I think I am - is not really who I am. The person I really am paces back and forth like a caged beast deep in my unconscious (or subconscious), just like the person you really are does. The beliefs, traumas, loves, etc. that swim around in our unconscious are the drives we act on day-to-day, surfacing maybe once in a while in our dreams, but we could never name them - not precisely - because they are in our unconscious. Our egos, on the other hand, masquerade as us, and sometimes our egos can be our worst enemies, as the story of "Revolver" so eloquently demonstrates.

As an individual who believes in an intelligent creator who I think does communicate with his creation, I had to wonder if when God speaks to people, his voice completely bypasses our ego, which normally would be playing the skeptic and would be suspicious of all incoming information. In other words, what if his voice can communicate directly with our subconscious? I, personally, have never had such an experience, but we've all heard someone share one of those stories when, out of nowhere, a voice that didn't belong to them somehow cautioned or comforted them. "I heard this voice tell me not to go down that dark alley," or "This voice said, 'It will be okay.'" Something to that effect.


So do we discredit these stories - chalk it up to gut feelings and intuition? Maybe. I'm sure that's the case some of the time. But sometimes, could it be that the reason God doesn't parade around, advertising his existence with megaphones, blimps, and Vegas-style electrical signs is that our egos would be skeptical of him just like they are of everything else, thinking the enemy is everywhere but inside? I don't know about you, but from the way the whole Adam-and-Eve thing went down, sounds like mankind's ego has been his worst enemy from the very beginning.

But Guy Ritchie says it better than I ever could. If you haven't seen "Revolver" and enjoy a flick that makes you think, you would probably be impressed with this fast-paced, intelligent, beautiful film. A little disclaimer - it is rated "R" for a reason. There is plenty of language, some nudity, gun violence, and torture (shown mostly off-screen.) So be warned, this is a film for grown-ups only.

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