Wednesday, February 27, 2013

"The Blessing" is one of many short films on the LDS church and gay people; also, a short about a Swedish boarding school


I’ve recently discussed a couple of independent films about the Mormon Church and homosexuality (Feb. 18, 2013) and the notorious Broadway musical (Drama blog, Feb. 25).  There are a number of short films  (a few documentaries of some length) on YouTube about the conflict. 
   
One of the most interesting dramatic shorts is “The Blessing” (17 min, 2004), directed by Stephen Williams, from AffirmationLDS (link). 
  
  
A young man visits his family, on wake as the father lies in bed after a heart attack and may be dying.  The young man has an older brother who is more “conservative”, and the family discussion has to deal with whether “Dad” stuck to “the rules” and could accept a blessing from a gay man.  The tone of the conversation is gentle, and the family is trying to deal with this “humanely”.  The film gives a good look at what happens inside an upper class Mormon family, and gives a good perspective on family culture.  The innards of the home seem “temple-like”. 

I didn't really see a connection to the "Jacob and Esau" story in the Bible, although that idea could have been pursued.  
     
Here’s another (not related) short film, “Water”  (“Vattnet”), directed by Marco van Bergen, from Sweden, 14 minutes, link. A teenager’s parents have apparently taken over running a boarding school in southern Sweden, and the teen has his own room in the “dorm” even though he is “family”.  The young man witnesses some bullying outdoors from his window, goes out and finds the victim, and invites him back to the room.  The older student has minor injuries to which the teen tends.  Then they have to deal with one another. 
  

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