I’m against Henry’s thing about me blowing “influences” out of proportion. I wrote about this before, but yeah, I think it’s completely valid to get something out of a piece of art that the artist didn’t explicitly intend. Not only valid, but necessary. It can’t be art without certain ambiguity and the subjectivity of the viewer. Otherwise it’s something else. A sermon, or something. But not art.
The other thing is, I dunno, he’s got it reversed. It’s never that I like a movie and so buy into the message and then blow it out of proportion. Whenever I love a movie, it’s because it reminds me of something I already know or believe. Like It’s a Wonderful Life. It reminds me of that Bible verse I value a lot. I like the movie so much because it’s a reminder of what that verse means to me, and it’s something I feel I need reminders of. So yeah, I bought into the verse first, which is why the movie connected so strongly with me. But I value the movie so much because I value the reminder. Not the other way around.
So yeah, it’s never that I like a movie or whatever so much that I allow it to influence my life to an untoward degree. It’s more that certain movies resonate with me because they remind me of a truth or idea that I value highly. All of my favorite movies are like that.