Today around the Watercooler, I am going to discuss the themes of in the new Get Smart movie. If you want a full review, please follow this link.
And this is your spoiler warning. While I won't be giving away anything major, if you plan to watch the movie and don't want to know about plot developments in the second half, stop now!!!!!!!!
Very early in the movie, it is established that Max Smart believes that CONTROL should get to know their enemies as individuals rather than just one note bad guys. By doing so, it could help them defeat KAOS.
Sure enough, in the second half, Max recognizes the voice of someone trying to kill him. And he is able to get the guy to stop by proving how much he cares about him.
That arguement is fine up until a point. There are some people on every side of a conflict who aren't as committed to the cause as the rest, so an act of kindness could get through to them.
However, there are many people who would destroy the US in a second if they could. In fact, the fact that Max knew so much about them could only make them madder. So thinking that showing our enemies kindness will win them over is naive.
On the third hand, there is Jesus' command to pray for our enemies. He doesn't specify personal or national enemies. And I know I don't pray for my enemies like I should. Okay, let's be honest. I don't pray for them at all. I have found that if you are praying for someone, you do truly come to care for them.
So I'm not sure where the balance lies. I'm still struggling through it.
And while a theme seemed to be a Leftist favorite idea (if we just love them, they'll love us), the movie takes a swipe at Leftist Hollywood. As the villain plans to blow up part of LA, his henceman asks about the innocent people who will be killed. The villain replies, "Yes, whatever will we do without all those movie star's political opinions." I was the only one in the theater who laughed, but I thought it was the funniest line in the movie.
So maybe I am reading too much into a movie I only mildly enjoyed. But that's what I am thinking about this week.