Skyline movie review: Christian rapture and the war for human brains

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.

Schedule of Traditional Latin Masses in the National Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus and Christ the King Parish (14-19 Aug 2010)

Societas Liturgiae Sacrae Sancti Gregorii

An apostolate dedicated to the celebration, propagation and promotion of the Traditional Latin Mass of St. Gregory the Great, implementing the Motu Proprio, SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM of Pope Benedict XVI.

Christ the King Parish
Greenmeadows Ave., Quezon City
National Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus
Military Ordinariate, Villamor Airbase, Pasay City
Lower Church Main Altar
FIRST ANNIVERSARYof the Traditional Latin Mass Apostolate Saturday, August 14, 8:30am
Vigil of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Celebrant: Rev. Fr. John Anthony Napulis, FFI
Rector, Shrine of Mary Co-Redemptrix
Talamban, Cebu City
Sunday, August 15, 9:15am
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Celebrant: Rt. Rev. Msgr. Cesar Salomon
Rector, Nat’l Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus
Saturday, August 21, 8:30am
St. Jane Frances de Chantal, Widow, Holy Woman
Celebrant: (To be announced)
Societas Liturgiæ Sacræ Sancti Gregorii
Traditional Latin Mass Apostolate
Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary
Sunday, August 22 – 13th Sunday after Pentecost, 9:15am Celebrant: Rt. Rev. Msgr. Cesar Salomon
Rector, Nat’l Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus
Saturday, August 28, 8:30am
St. Augustine,Bishop, Confessor
Celebrant: Rev. Fr. Anthony Ranada, SVD
Parochial Vicar Sto. Rosario Parish, Dampalit, Malabon
Sunday, August 29, 9:15am
14th Sunday after Pentecost
Celebrant: Rt. Rev. Msgr. Cesar Salomon
Rector, Nat’l Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus

Bishop Honesto F. Ongtioco, D.D. of the Diocese of Cubao permitted the erection of a personal parish for the Traditional Latin Mass

The Bishop of the Diocese of Cubao, his excellency Bishop Honesto F.Ongtioco, D.D., has permitted the erection of a personal parish for those who are attached to the Extra Ordinary Form of the Latin Rite. The church building will be dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and will under the auspices of Fr. Michell Joe Zerrudo and the Ecclesia Dei Society of St. Joseph to consolidate efforts aong various groups advocating the return of the form of Mass popularly known as the Tridentine Mass. The parish will also be available for other Sacraments to be administered according to the liturgical books of 1962 or prior to 1970. It will also be a venue of training for priests who would like to learn the ancient usage of the Roman Rite and others who would like to learn the rubrics of serving at the traditional rites, including schola and choir training. The Diocese is now looking for a venue for the said personal parish and funds are solicited in order to commence such as august aposolate. Funds may be channeled through Fr. Michell Joe B. Zerrudo, Parish of Our Lord of Divine Mercy, Diocese of Cubao, Maamo cor. Madasalins Sts., Sikatuna, Quezon City, Philippines or may call his parish at 029213337. We therefore appeal to traditonal Catholic communities to help us in such endeavor.

Dennis Raymond P. Maturan
Founding Chairman
Ecclesia Dei Society of St. Joseph

My prize in elementary storytelling contest: pictures of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary

When I was a Grade 1 student in St. Rose of Lima School in Bacolod City, I was asked to represent the class in a storytelling contest vs. the representatives of Grades 2 and 3.  My story piece is “The Boy who Cried Wolf.”  When the results were out, the winner was Grade 3, followed by Grade 2, and I for Grade 1.  My prize: two one-inch pictures of the Sacred Heart Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary connected by a hinge.  The pictures are framed with ornate plastic painted with gold.

My mother was proud of my prize.  She placed it on our altar where we pray the rosary every night.  Me and my brothers and sisters were already trying to fend of sleep, but pray we must.  My mother and father were kneeling, and so must we till the rosary ended, complete with the Litany (I just noticed the number litany prayers is the same as the number of the rosary beads).

I don’t know what happened to my little prize.  I think it was kept in a cabinet together with my journal notebooks–my mother keeps little things about me and my other brothers and sisters.  My mother died about ten years ago, but her face lit by candles as she prayed on our altar I still remember clearly.  Before she died, she entrusted me to Our Lady of Guadalupe.  And Our Lady has become my mother.

On my present workdesk are two 20 inch by 20 inch pictures connected by a hinge: the pictures of the Christ the King and Our Lady of Guadalupe.  The Sacred Heart of Jesus is visble: aflame, crowned with thorns, mounted with a cross.  The Immaculate Heart of Mary is invisible, yet her hands joined in prayer and the flower on her dress above her hands suggests her Immaculate Heart.  I gazed and gazed and smiled.  The boy who cried wolf, now cries “Lord, Lord!” and “Mama, Mama!”  Thank you for making me win third place, so that I will place first in your hearts.