The letters of our thoughts are the ideas present in our mind before they come to realization . . . Thoughts that are, yet not felt . . . The words of the subconscious . . . of the soul . . .

These are the LETTERS OF MY THOUGHTS.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Movies with in the Jewish World



I've been rather low on words lately . . . not sure what exactly to write.

Anyhow, here is point for discussion -perhaps we could have one here for once. (I notice that others -like my blog-friend David- can write a few lines and bring in over 50+ comments . . . I'm no where near as philosophical -so I doubt I could bring in over 15 . . . but it would be a nice change for once :-) )

I have a lot to thank the Movie industry for . . .
It's how my parents make a living . . . In fact (though we know in the end G-d runs the show etc.) they even met while working on a film together!

Being as such, I spent a lot of time in my youth hanging around film sets, reading scripts etc. I view the world in many ways as a potential film.
As Frumme Yidden movies are of limits . . . fine. The gratuitous violence and immorality in most (often for no reason other then the fact that is sells), besides the etzem inyun of Bittul Torah put them out of the realm . . . if you disagree then so be it for you, but I doubt anyone would sit down to watch even 'Harry Potter' with his Mashpia (though I've heard of some "new" style mashpiem that use different movies to explain bechira chafshis, yesh m'ayin etc.)

The question here is what about 'frum' films.
I liked Ushpizen (I bring it only as an example) -I found it to be well made and entertaining.
To what point do these things fit into our world?

  1. What about films that are made directly for the frum world?
  2. What about those made for the frum world, but mass-marketed?

I, for example, have a story based on the Golem worked out entirely in my mind, and to a certain extent on paper as well. Would such a thing be appropriate to release? On one hand it could bring ideas and reach others that would otherwise not be reached, it would give a 'kosher' option out there . . .

Or would it be opening the floodgates of disaster. By creating such a thing, that would be found in theatres . . . in a public domain -would we be drawing those who would otherwise be sheltered into the fires?

19 comments:

California said...

Hi there...
Okay I think that making Frum movies is sort of like making Jewish music.
Some people ONLY listen to Niggunim, while others listen to Miami boy's choir, while others go and listen to Matisyahu.
For each person there is their own level. For one person to listen to miami boys is awful b/c they are only into Niggunim, and then for me to buy Matisyahu would be not so good b/c i don't NEED to listen to him, if I'm fine with Miami etc... you see what i mean?
Now whatever gets you to serve Hashem best is what you should do!
Like when I saw Ushpizen it really made me realize the life of so many Yidden in EY, it made me realize how many countless couples and families experience a lot of the Nissim and events that they in the film encountered.
You have a Jewish population that on the general whole to some extent watches films. Why not supply them with moving, emotional films?
If it heightens ppl's awareness, appreciation, love, and sometimes even fear of Hashem then why not?

I don't mean something like agent emes where everyone is Jewish but the lack of Middos, and the lack of Derech Eretz in those kids is prevelant!!!

If you Mottel make a film where there is mamosh a message that will lead ppl. to Hashem then I most definately feel it is worth it and in fact extremly productive to go through with it!

mia said...

i'm totally for your production, but that's because i watch movies kin general so i may as well watch a good jewish one. Yet, here the problem lies within bittel zman. no? if someone is listening to music, usually they are doing something at the same time. ie studying, driving, partying.... but a movie you devote the two or whatever hours to do nothing.

This is not like Matisyahu at all. Matisyahu introduces children to a whole nother genre of music. My bro loves the rythm and now wants to hear other singers with the same reggae flavor.


you say maybe now children will go to the movies to see this kosher film and will then be exposed to others. what about the library? do you tell children not to go so they shant see shtussy books, or the array of movies and magazines?!

there are kosher imax films that parents still do not let their children see. They don't like the whole inyan of going to see a movie, so i can see why people might dissagree.

b'tachlis--i'll purchase your first movie ticket. :)

me said...

I don't think that the movies should be in movie theatres... That is not right...
Also if it causes you to be a better Eved Hashem, then it's not Bittul zman...

Mottel said...

Wow, it's nice to see some comments. :-)
Keep 'em coming

Anonymous said...

mot- maybe respond to the comments instead of displaying your gratitude. no, we didn't comment because we feel bad for your poor soul.

California... me said...

Well said anonymous!
Mot, i expected to come back and see what you had to say on what we said... That's called a conversation...

simone613 said...

What I like about movies in general, is they give us a chance to peek into other people's life, and usually it makes us more open and comprehensive.
Jewish movies like Ushpizin let others, yids and goyim learn and appreciate frumkeit!
The aim of good movies is not to entertain only but also to educate and teach.
Anonyme137

Mottel said...

Wow . . . sorry for not responding.
I had in fact prepared a response (bellow), but ran out of time before I could finish it.


It seems that most people seemed positive about the idea of making 'Frum' movies . . .
There are two points that must be dealt with.
1. Going to a theater is Assur -even if they played (L'havdil elef havdolos) a Rebbe video in the Manns Chinese, sitting in a theater is a problem.

That being said, if by making a Jewish movie we would bring people to go to a theater, even if they have gone in the past, then there is a problem.

2. There is the general problem of the 'modernization' of Orthodox Judaism, Chabad etc. Let's take Matis for example . . . He's brought people to night clubs etc. Given a hechsher, as it were, on all sorts of places that are not meant for us. Period.

This why the whole idea makes me nervous . . . I wouldn't want people to use me as a hetter to and a gorem to other negative things . . .

I remember hearing some time back that a lady asked the Rebbe about making a movie about the Nevi'os (prophetess) The Rebbe responded that to be m'kariv people with a medium that is forbidden (i.e. Movies) would be wrong.
The letter should make things moot . . . but I have yet to see it, as I only remember the details vaguely.

mia said...

Going to a theater is Assur -even if they played (L'havdil elef havdolos) a Rebbe video in the Manns Chinese, sitting in a theater is a problem.!!!!!!!



since when? and what about programming the rebbe on the radio? tv? videos?

Anonymous said...

So make films that go straight to video at first...
If they're that good, then make an all Frum cinema.
Movie theatres are awful, but think about it, by z'man Moshiach they will still exist, just with Rebbe-type videos playing, and learning all day long. It will be used for the good, for Kedushah. So why not start it now? Why not make a cinema that is ONLY for frum films, and Rebbe videos.
You can call it by a differnt name etc... and if it's successful it will start popping up alover the states, and internationally as well.
Basically i think that if it causes ppl. to grow and be inspired then do it. If it doesn't help ppl b'Ruchnius then it's not worth anything more then the general trash on the market... unfortunatly...
You should have a lot of Hatzlocha!

Mottel said...

Mia
-There are two subjects different things that we are talking about here, media and medium.
Goyishe Media -i.e. Music, movies etc. is out of the question.
Medium is parve -i.e. film, radio etc.
A Theater is a tumma'dika place. Men and women sitting together etc.
Even if done properly it still comes out rather odd . . .

Anon -Will movie theaters be here in Yemos Hamoshiach? Why would we need them? Learning Torah . . . we have s'farim. Why watch videos when we'll have a real farbrengen etc. Unless it would be a group 'hookup' . . .
By the way, though the ideas are great, please comment with a name.

California said...

Sorry about before, anonymous was actually me, it was a glitch on the comp that made me be anonymous...
Anyways, I have no proof of the existance of movie theatres etc. by Yemos HaMoshiach, but perhaps they will exist for a hook-up etc...
What I was getting at though is that everything that is in existance can be used for K'dusha is we will it so. "LaAsot Lo Dira B'Tachtonim!"
Last night at a 3 Tammuz Farbrengen we all sat in a massive hall with hundreds of Yidden, and they put up a massive screen of a JEM video, the way we were all there with the sound and everything felt like a movie theatre. If you make a place that only shows Frum films, Rebbe videos, Shiurim etc. it will catch on.

Mottel said...

True, but it neednot have THX and popcorn

california said...

well, duh...

mia said...

Even if done properly it still comes out rather odd . . .


What about the Jewish Children's Museum's theater? They even had a viewing of Ushpizin!

Mottel said...

A good point . . .

Editor said...

Film is a medium just like any other.

To the point above, Matisyahu did not make going to clubs seem mutar.

I hope nobody who really felt that it they would not step in to a club did so when Matisyahu showed up.

I'd be interested to hear if that were the case for anyone.

Personally I went even though my Rabbi told me not go. Once he knew I was going against his wishes (I did not ask his advice), he said "have a good time!"

But I am not the type that would not go into to a club because it's "assur".

Mottel said...

Editor said...
Film is a medium just like any other.

Or as I said "Medium is parve -i.e. film, radio etc."

As to the rest of your post:
Nobody who was against nightclubs would go for Matis. But Matis may 1. draw in those who would not normally go (though who have no problem with the various issues that would deter others from night clubs)
2. Make it seem far less unacceptable then it really is.

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