Skyline movie review: Christian rapture and the war for human brains
December 12, 2010 1 Comment
My father and I watched the movie Skyline few Sundays ago. We came about 15 minutes late, but we made it to the Day One of the Alien Invasion. The film ran for about an hour and a half. Rotten Tomatoes gave the movie a 14% rating, i.e. bad movie. But I disagree.
First, there are no movie stars like Tom Cruise. I think this is a positive aspect of the movie. The characters are plain and boring–just like you and me. They represent many of people we know who spend the night away in parties and orgies. A casual sex made a girl pregnant and the man is not ready to be a father. The setting is a condominium and there is no family to speak of. An old man lives alone with a dog.
And second, the story was not well told because it has a hanging ending. When the movie ended and the cast of characters went up, the people still remained in their seats, wondering if the movie has really ended. I felt cheated that the movie did not end properly unlike Independence Day–a virus was delivered and the spaceships were destroyed. Or in Transformers: the Autobots defeated the Decepticons. A glorious morning shines after a terrible storm. But this is not how it ended in Skyline: in the face of an alien invasion, the humans–with all their jet fighters and nuclear missiles–are powerless. And the thought of powerlessness lingered long hours or days for me after watching the film.
Let us turn to some theological elements in the film:
1. Captivating Light and Beatific Vision
According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, as quoted by Wikipedia, beatific vision is defined as follows:
The immediate knowledge of God which the angelic spirits and the souls of the just enjoy in Heaven. It is called “vision” to distinguish it from the mediate knowledge of God which the human mind may attain in the present life. And since in beholding God face to face the created intelligence finds perfect happiness, the vision is termed “beatific.”
The light seen by the human characters in the movie may also be called beatific in the superficial sense, because they find it wonderful to see. Such a wonderful light pulls them towards the heavens, similar to what St. Paul described during the coming of Christ:
Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. (1 Thes 4:17)
But in the movie there was no heaven to speak of, but a deep pit of dark slime where humans are piled on top of each other. This is Sheol, the abode of the dead.
Such an alien light reminds me of the shining darkness of sin (e.g. pornography): it captivates your vision, drawing you closer to read or see more, until your soul is plunged in the darkness of sin. Not to look is difficult for the will, unless another person immediately pulls you out from the captivating light. This reminds me of the palantir of Orthanc that Pippin looked into and the Dark Lord Sauron caught hold of his mind; Pippin only recovered when he confessed his sin to Gandalf.
2. War for the human brain
The alien creatures may be classified as octopi and behemoths. Octopi creatures capable of flight. No, they do not scan for electromagnetic radiation like that in the Matrix and zoom in for the kill. Instead, they seek human and draws them out either by lure or by force. Behemoths, on the other, have nothing else to do but to crush everything in its path.
These alien creatures remind me of the modern-day headhunters: multinationals, governments, and non-government organizations. They get the best minds to join them and the persons they get became imbued with the organization’s culture and values. I am thinking countries like China, companies like Planned Parenthood, and the many organizations which promote the homosexual lobby. What the movie’s ending may be saying is that it is possible to be part of these organizations while keeping your own mind. Tyranny is terrified by the human free will and tyrants will try to keep human mind in control either by brainwashing the adults in universities or by sucking the brains of infants in partial birth abortion.
The movie ends with utter hopelessness: no US nuke missiles can destroy the alien ships. The US tried all their military hardware and software against Vietnam; US lost the war. The US also tried their military might against Iraq; the US is now recalling back its forces. The US has not learned its lesson well: a war of the mind cannot be fought with guns and nukes. The religion of peace called Islam can only be converted by the peace of Christ, the Lion from the Tribe of Judah. The Great Red Dragon that is communist Russia and China can only be defeated by the Woman Clothed With the Sun, Our Lady of Fatima. And the multi-tentacled behemoth that is Planned Parenthood can only be destroyed by She Who Crushed the Head of the Serpent, Tequaxalupeaux, Our Lady of Guadalupe whose feast we now celebrate. In the end, this is what we can be sure: the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary shall triumph.