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Old September 18 2010, 06:39 PM   #32
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Re: Devil - Grading & Discussion

Silvercrest wrote: View Post
Myasishchev wrote: View Post
Silvercrest wrote: View Post

Can't he just claim them after they die? That's the usual method. Does he have to intervene because otherwise they'll somehow escape him? Seriously, what would be the point?
They could become good, if given the chance to live. Or, if you're into that sort of thing, "form a personal relationship with Christ" and all that nonsense.
I'm embarrassed. Those are supposed to be the beliefs I subscribe to, and I didn't think about that! Too busy being snarky and cynical, I guess.
It's sort of a good example why I'm not a big fan of salvation by grace alone. You could trigger it anytime the Devil shows up to eat souls.

I'm sure this happens all the time. Major loophole.

Edit: btw, and not to get into the whole ball of wax, but there's nothing wrong with a personal relationship with Christ as such; however most people I know that claim to have them ain't Christian except by that very limited criterion.

Although you'd think being confronted with the Devil would be the quickest way possible to convince someone to sincerely pray to Jesus.
Ah yes, the old "foxhole conversion."

Really though, I think I'm still trying to figure out what the nature of Hell and the Devil are supposed to be in an essentially atheistic Hollywood. Faith or salvation don't seem to play much part in it. Here we have a Devil who's apparently allowed to manifest himself in an elevator and... do whatever it is he's going to do. So why doesn't he just hang around permanently? I'd bet money this movie doesn't show a God or Jesus that's stopping him. And I'd bet double that anyone in the movie who actually does pray to Jesus will be shown up as a buffoon, or die a horrible death, or both.

In the Hellraiser movies, you've got a Hell that doesn't appear to be a normal afterlife at all, but it's still populated by immortal beings who traffic in immortal souls. And they'll take anyone they can get their hands ... err, chains on, not just the condemned. Does that mean they have the power to waylay someone from the afterlife they were meant for?

In Drag Me To Hell, you've got a gypsy woman with the power to curse someone to the traditional hell, in retaliation for a comparatively minor offense. So let me get this straight: she can exercise eternal judgement over someone else's soul for no real cause? How is it that she's not ruling the world?

I wouldn't presume to ask what the rules are in these movies, or get someone to explain the inconsistencies. I'm just trying to understand the mindset and world-view that comes up with this stuff.
I guess these probably all fall under the magic equivalent of the narrative rule that prohibits Reed Richards from transforming the world into a technotopic paradise despite fifty years of constant super-scientific innovation. Stephen Strange is Useless?

I think both probably have the same narrative motivation: showing a world where God intervenes personally, unsubtly and often creates a world totally unlike our own at best, and at worst breaks suspension of disbelief entirely.

A world where the Devil can physically intervene is not quite so bad, because the Devil is not omnipotent. (Compare this to pagan gods--they can intervene directly as well, because, again, they are limited.) God is more difficult to place within a narrative, because God is, trivially, a deus ex machina.

Interestingly, that's actually part of why M. Night movies blow. They create worlds where God does intervene personally, unsubtly, and often. The world of Signs, for example, exists solely so Mel Gibson can get over his wife's death and believe again. And it's terrible.

Agent Richard07 wrote: View Post
Silvercrest wrote: View Post
I'd bet money this movie doesn't show a God or Jesus that's stopping him.
So, it's like a Neil Gaiman hell?

Last edited by Myasishchev; September 18 2010 at 06:56 PM.
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