Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Story of Christmas|
Director: Henri Heidsieck
Genres: Indie & Art House, Kids & Family
Classic retelling of the First Christmas. Also includes 2 bonus cartoons.."Christmas Comes But Once A Year" and "The Christmas Visitor"!
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Not your typical nativity story.
ViolinAnnie | Orlando, FL | 12/13/2007
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I can't decide if I liked this DVD or not. The animation from 1994 leaves a lot to be desired compared to the fantastic CGI of today. And the dialogue was a little... how shall I say... canned. But I really didn't mind that it was basic. That's what I was looking for: something basic for my preschool age children.
What I didn't like was that it was a little too intense. The story, told from a donkey's perspective, seems to be more focused on King Herod and his jealousy than on Jesus himself. The film starts with the villainous Herod and keeps going back to his murderous intent on Jesus life. Of course they don't "show" anything, but the terrified mothers and the vicious looking soldiers raising their weapons were enough to give you a good picture of what happened in Bethlehem and why Jeremiah prophesied that there would be great weeping there. The story then follows Joseph and Mary as they take their child to Egypt to protect him from assassination. I can't remember ever seeing a film portray the time Jesus spent in Egypt and, as an adult, I enjoyed this segment of the film quite a bit. I feel like it gave me a better perspective on who Jesus was. (One of Rich Mullin's final uncut songs comes to mind: "My Deliverer" on The Jesus Record. Terrific stuff.) Even so, it was too much for my kids. A good chunk of the film's 45 minutes was "scary" for them. Not how I want them to remember their first nativity movie.
Now that I think about it, this DVD follows Matthew 2 very closely. Nothing wrong with that. It's just not the gentle Luke 2 version to which we are more accustomed. Maybe I need to change my perspective. The Bible deals with reality and reality is that Jesus did threaten Herod's world, and ultimately He rocks the world of every person. Like CS Lewis noted in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia), "Safe?...Who said anything about safe? Course he isn't safe. But he's good. He's the King, I tell you."
Still, I think I'll wait until my kids are a little older before we use this DVD again.