Who am I?
My name is Eric. I have a music degree from Wheaton College. I’ve been writing about bands and composers from all over the world pretty much since I got out of college over at The Indie Handbook. But those who know me, know that one of my other passions film or movies or cinema or whatever you want to call it (but don’t call it “cinema” too often if you can help it, it starts to sound condescending after a while).
What am I doing here?
That’s a good question. And the answer is, honestly, I don’t know for sure. This blog is still evolving and probably will continue to do so for a while. But, I promise, we’ll settle on something more or less reminiscent of “a style” eventually. For now, let’s just say that I want to highlight religious elements found in secular cinema of the last 125 years (yes, we will dip into the silent era . . . a lot).
What do you believe?
Well, we could go over that for weeks and never agree upon the minutiae. But like the last 17 centuries of Christians who came before me, I hold firm to the Nicene Creed.
I think they’re great. As a window into other cultures or into the past, I think they have a lot to teach us. I’ll be honest, though. I think they were better before we learned how to use computer generated special effects as a shortcut around good storytelling.
About religion in the movies?
I think it’s more prevalent and a more important factor throughout cinematic history than most of us give it credit for. For instance, the great horror films of the ’30s and ’40s, I don’t think, would even work without a pervasive, innate cultural understanding of sin and the Fall (we’ll talk about this a lot). This is also why I think the craft of horror filmmaking changed significantly (thanks in part to fellow Wheaton alum Wes Craven) as the cultural influence of the Church waned. My interests go well beyond horror, of course, but that’s probably the easiest one to explain quickly.
About the Three Act Structure?
There is only one Gospel.
I’ll never tell.
And why should anyone listen to you?
Well, I have as much a right to an opinion as anyone else. Other than that, I actually did spend three semesters as a Bible and theology major at Wheaton before I discovered musicology as a sophomore. And as a musicology student I even wrote a 35 page paper arguing that the sound film was a logical extension of 19th Century opera, a position I still hold more firmly than ever, though I knew next to nothing about film when I wrote it. Seriously, I could totally crush that thesis now if I had a chance to do it over again. As for why anyone should listen to me, I can’t answer that. Listen to me, don’t listen to me, that’s your decision. Feel free to disagree with me and present your own arguments, too, I’d love it if you did that too. Just, please, keep it civil. No insults or ad hominem attacks directed toward me or anyone else.
Why the name, The Church at Miller Glenn? Don’t you know “glen” is spelled with one N?
This is why.