Lars and the Real Girl

When I’m on a plane I usually like to do one, or all, of these four things:

  1. Listen to my iPod
  2. Read a Book
  3. Watch a movie on my iPod
  4. Drink as much Cran/Apple as I possibly can

On our flight to and back from the Echo Conference two weeks ago I decided to go primarily with options 3 & 4.  As I sipped on my Cran/Apple I decided to watch Lars and the Real Girl a film about a young man (Ryan Gosling) who has some pretty serious, although awkwardly humorous issues.  The film had a remarkably script and above average acting but even beyond the artistic side of the film was what I felt to be a deeply spiritual message. 

As I alluded to earlier Gosling’s character, Lars has some issues but then again who doesn’t.  He is somewhat of a loner and an outcast yet he is still friendly and accommodating in most situations.  Everyone in the small community Lars calls home, especially Lars sister-in-law, want to help him find his soul mate thinking a good wife was exactly the cure to all of Lars problems.  Feeling the pressure from everyone around him Lars finally decides they’re right; enter the “Real Girl”.  What follows is a clever and witty glimpse into the community’s reaction towards Lars, his sanity and his new girlfriend Bianca.

Many would likely find this film strange and some might even be uncomfortable with the premise and conclusion but nothing could have been further from my feelings.  In this movie I saw a glimpse of how I feel God calls his followers to treat those around us who are different than we are.  Whether it’s a mental issue, sin issue or just a personality flaw, which we all have, God calls us to reach out to those around us guiding them towards a better path.  This doesn’t mean we look at them as outcasts and point out all of their sins, which we also all have, but rather that we would learn to see them as human beings whom God created and genuinely loves.

I feel every Christian should see this film and at the very least dialogue about how its themes connect to our faith and the people that live in the world around us.  It is a deep film, a different film and as cliché as it sounds it is a film that should cause all of us to ask ourselves “What Would Jesus Do?”            

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