‘The Golden Compass’ leads the way

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By Sai’da Green

By Sai’da Green

“The Golden Compass” is the first part of a fantasy film trilogy based on books written by Phillip Pullman.

The story centers on the courageous 12-year-old Lyra Belacqua (Dakota Blue Richards) who lives in Oxford, England in a universe parallel to our own where people are shadowed by souls or “Daemons.”

The “Daemons” are portrayed as talking animal companions with soul-like qualities.

With the help of a “Golden Compass” and mystical creatures she meets along the way, Lyra sets out on a mission to rescue her friends Billy and Roger, along with other kids that have been kidnapped by Ms. Coulter’s (Nicole Kidman) General Oblation Board or “Gobblers.”

The Gobblers are kidnapping kids as part of a plot by the Magisterium to control the free will of people across all parallel universes, starting with their own.

I saw the film and I loved it.

I felt like I was right there with Lyra and Pan,( her Daemon), as they traveled to the North to rescue the missing children from the Gobblers.

Other movie goers shared my enthusiasm for the film.

Sue Frist, a mother of two, said “I enjoyed the movie, I brought my kids along and they enjoyed seeing everyone as a pet, and I enjoyed the actors.”

Frist’s husband, Timothy Frist said the film was, “Fantastic! I liked the movie, I read the books prior to this and I like the theme of fighting against evil for freedom, it’s very American.”

With all the rave reviews I heard from film critics and movie goers, I found it ironic that a film that teaches children to protect free will and fight against those that try to eliminate it has met such strong criticism.

The film has received strong opposition from members of Christian communities, primarily, the Catholic Church.

Adam R. Holz, associate editor for Focus on the Family “Plugged In” magazine and Web site called the series “heretical” and “theologically controversial,” and said that the film is “…awash in a twisted worldview and dark spirituality.”

Newsweek writer Devin Gordon noted that, “While references to the church are gone from the film, no one over four feet tall could mistake the Magisterium for anything but an oppressive theocracy.”

Though the film has received a few negative reviews, it opened at number one at the box office this weekend with $26 million.

It is a fun and exciting film that’s well on its way to becoming the next best fantasy film series.

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