Monday, December 7, 2009

New Age Cinema

Last Sunday night I caught most of the film, All of Me, starring Steve Martin and Lilly Tomlin, on TV - a film which I hadn't seen in several years. It's a very funny film, but I've learned a few things about competing worldviews since I last saw it.

In this 1984 comedy, one is never quite sure if the ideas of the New Age movement are being held up to ridicule or are being promoted in a humorous piece of propaganda.

Tomlin's character, who is on her death bed, believes basic New Age tenets such as "becoming one with the universe." Further, upon her death, she plans to have her soul transmigrated into another woman's body, who is perfectly willing to give up her own soul so as to join the cosmos.

Martin's character (and others) ask "you don't really believe that stuff, do you?" and refer to Tomlin's character Edwina as wacko and bananas.

But . . . the basic premise of the film is that transmigration works – it just doesn't work out the way that Edwina had planned.

So is All of Me promoting New Age mumbo-jumbo? Or making fun of it? I won't ruin the story for you; I'd just encourage you to find it and rent it to see for yourself. (You can watch the trailer here).

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