Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Walt Disney Movies

I know most parents set some standards for their children's movie viewing.  I know there are many with much stronger standards than we have (which is actually probably better).  Some are much more lenient than we are (and are godly people that we respect).  To be honest,  that's what makes it so hard at times.  You go over to someone or they come over and then "exposure" happens.  Then you are left with explaining to your child why your family does or doesn't watch something different than another Christian family. 

Also, I know I've even changed my opinion about some things.  There are movies (and books for that matter) that I allowed for my students that I don't allow now looking at it from a parent's perspective.

For good or ill, I decided that I'm going to go through a list of some  common Disney movies and write down some of the reasons why we choose to allow my dd to watch or not watch.  These are just the ones that pop into my mind right now.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs  YES  Good and evil are clearly delineated.  Snow White dresses modestly and looks forward to Mr. Right. 

Cinderella YES  Cindy serves without complaining even though she faces negative circumstances.  She dresses modestly.  Good triumphs over evil.  One negative is that the Prince bases his desire for Cinderella based on how she looks, but it does show that it's the man that's supposed to pursue the woman.

Sleeping Beauty  YES  She disobeyed by going up the stairs resulting in negative consequences for herself and others.  The prince sacrificially fights for "his woman" and others.

Mary Poppins  YES Outsider comes in and teaches the father about the importance of family.  Teaches about the fun of imagination.  Also teaches a little bit of history if you discuss the suffragettes.

Pollyanna  YES She teaches others to not only be content but to appreciate things.  People actually grow through her influence even though she's only a child.  Even though her intentions are good, she disobeys by sneaking out and experiences a very negative consequence as a result, but you know she's going to end up ok thanks to the good looking doctor! 

The Little Mermaid  NO  Ariel and the other mermaids have a few modesty issues with their dress.  Ariel disobeys her father and seeks assistance from a witch.  Any negative consequences?  No way.  She gets what she wants.  (In the original fairy tale, the mermaid loses her life because she can't make the prince love her.  Now that's consequences!)

Beauty and the Beast YES Belle chooses her "man" so to speak based on his inside not his outside.  She sacrifices herself for her father.

Newsies YES for a little older.  Great history piece showing child labor, orphans, homeless, unions, etc.  David works to help his family in a difficult time.  Cowboy learns  to grow into a selfless leader.

Lion King  YES  A little hesitant with the native spirituality, but on the whole a great piece about facing consequences and assuming responsibility.

Pocahontas  NO.  No Disney movie stays true to the actual story but this one seems worse than most.  White man bad just slaps you in the face and pagan animism is the answer to it all.  And once again, father doesn't know best.

Toy Story  YES  Woody learns to accept Buzz, and Buzz learns he has a purpose apart from his plans.

Hunchback of Notre Dame  NO  This story was too heavy to bring into a kid's realm.  I don't mind a church person being a bad guy, but his lust which ultimately leads him to seek the demons for assisitance  was too graphic.  Phoebus' affection if very shallow (well, it was in the book as well).  Esmeralda uses her wits and her "feminine whiles" to get her way. 

Mulan YES OK, you have to work around the ancestor worship, but the fact that you want to please and honor your family is a good thing.  Mulan attempts to help her father, but she does it in a way that ends up with dishonor and alienation.  When she finally acts as herself, she has to rebuild what was lost, but then succeeds in saving the Emporer. 

There are many more, but I think I've spent enough time on this for now.  If you read this and have thoughts or comments, PLEASE make them.  I would love to read what others think.

1 comment:

A glimpse of me.... said...

Thank you for the list. We too are very cautious about what movies we let our children watch.


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