Look out, sliced bread: the uncanny X-Men are threatening to become the latest, greatest thing. Action-hungry audiences spent a surprisingly robust $54.5 million in the film's opening weekend. Critics found themselves shocked that character development and social import could blend with the comic-book genre. And Christians spend the weekend seeking the most meaningful spiritual analogies from the highly allegorical story.
"It's this summer's most thoroughly satisfying movie," says GreenLake Reflections' Jeffrey Overstreet about X-Men, in which a group of superpowered mutants strive to fit into a society that fears them. "X-Men are the heroes the big screen so desperately needed. They're damaged, lonely, and misunderstood, but they have a … hope for understanding with 'normal mankind.'" The Dove Foundation says this parallels a Christian experience in America: "Often, the unwitting suspicion cast at the followers of Christ takes on a comparable prejudice. But, like the sacrificial motivations of the film's protagonists, believers are reminded to love their persecutors." This is not the only way the X-Men display Christian virtues. Movieguide appreciated "the unconditional forgiveness [X-Men leader] Professor X shows to his old friend Magneto, in the hopes that he will turn from his evil ways." Deanna Marquart, guest reviewer for Christian Spotlight, says that another mutant's penchant for self-sacrifice is a "heart-touching lesson in love." Not every reviewer was happy; Childcare Action complained of a nearly nude mutant with a "sprayed-on outfit," and a premise that was "in favor of the theory of evolution." But Hollywood Jesus disagreed, saying that the one reference to mutants' "evolution" from humans was ...1
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