Reel Spirituality is excited to present
Friday, Oct 27, 2017
in Travis Auditorium
on the campus of
Fuller Theological Seminary
135 N Oakland Ave
Pasadena, CA 91182
The screening will be followed by a conversation with the film's writer, Logan Sparks, and Dr. John Goldingay, Fuller's David Allan Hubbard Professor of Old Testament. The conversation will be moderated by Dr. Catherine Barsotti, Affiliate Assistant Professor of Theology and Culture.
Dr. Rob Johnston served on the Ecumenical Jury at the 2017 Locarno Film Festival, and the jury awarded Lucky their prize as the film that best portrayed “human experience that is in harmony with the gospel” or best sensitized “viewers to spiritual, human or social questions and values.” Of the film, Dr. Johnston writes:
The film notes make clear, as did the director during his Q&A, that Stanton is an atheist, himself. And the film is meant to be about Stanton. But the film, despite itself, explores a spirituality of life that extends beyond surface reality. As John Lynch, the director, said in his response to the award, “While Lucky wears his atheism on his sleeve, there is no doubt that the themes of mortality and life’s meaning fall in a spiritual realm. Even though Lucky (and Harry Dean for that matter) would disagree that there is a spiritual realm, or a soul for that matter. But regardless of one’s faith, we all have to face the truth of our mortality and ‘Truth is a thing’,” [as the movie says].
Reel Spirituality co-director Elijah Davidson also saw the film at the 2017 South by Southwest Film Festival and loved it. He writes:
Lucky is a generous, hopeful, open and welcoming film about an atheist finding peace with his mortality. The atheist is a WWII veteran played by Harry Dean Stanton. As expected, he is perfect in the role. As we learned in a post-screening Q&A, this is in part because the filmmakers built the film around his philosophy of life. At large, we are used to atheistic manifestos being hostile toward the greater, faith-filled culture.
Lucky isn’t angry, and it isn’t insistent of its own vision or dismissive of the beliefs of others. It’s a gentle film that is true to Lucky’s philosophy and embracing of the faith of others. Considering this, Lucky, the character, might not be inclined to quote, "Blessed are the peacemakers," but I'm inclined to include him amongst their ranks for the ways the film featuring him seeks to appreciate all the ways people make peace with their own mortality. I also loved the film’s rhythm. It’s patient and perfectly doles out the humor and pathos. I heartily recommend the film.