So, I went with my dad to the movies yesterday, and despite the fact I want to see Avengers again (twice is not enough, I hate being busy) I bowed out and agreed to see the movie he wanted. Partially because it is always good to be nice to family if they are nice to you (i.e. Like for Like, as I talked about just a few days ago) and because I’ll admit I was a little curious too. So we went and saw For Greater Glory.
Which, if I’d payed more attention I might have known what it was about. Beyond just a war in Mexico. Though I don’t know if it was attention to the stuff about it that I should have paid attention to (I didn’t recall them mentioning what quickly became an obvious fact) or my lack of attention in the four semesters of Spanish I took.
I beg off the last, because thanks to the stress I endured in trying to learn Spanish for four semester, whenever I have to deal with Spanish I generally get a headache. They aren’t as bad now, but back in the day you do not want to know the kind of pain my head went through just flipping past the Spanish radio station. Even now I still have stress headaches about it. I kid you not.
Anyways, if I had paid more attention before going it, or if they’d made a bigger deal about it, I would have realized this movie was about Mexican Catholics. And now you know why a Heathen went to a movie about Catholics. Because I didn’t know. 😛
That said, it actually was a pretty good movie. I think I missed a few parts, tough I have no idea if they were important. And I am pretty sure I missed a few key things, but that may be because I am a) Not Mexican and b) Not Catholic. I’m still trying to figure out what the difference is between beatified and canonized. My dad wondered if one was for women and the other was for men in turning them into saints, but (spoilers) since it was a kid that was beatified I didn’t think that was it.
The story itself was informative. I never learned much about Mexican history. And my education was better than most kids since I was home schooled back in the day. But, according to the Wiki, most Mexicans don’t know much about this war, so I don’t feel quite as bad about not knowing about the Christeros as they were called. The basic facts are Mexico elects a President, and he starts laying down a bunch of laws against the Catholic Church. In Mexico. Where it’s full of Catholics. Who love their Church. Because this is back in the 1920’s when people were more religious.
Spoilers again: He doesn’t really drop the idiot ball after that.
So, in true classical history and movie making script writing, the peasants (and some not so peasants) rebel! And the President does what ever guy in his position does.
Tries to Kill the Peasant.
Yeah. I have no idea where he thought that was a good idea. Here’s a hint, Unless you’re the Soviet Union or China, killing the peasants generally doesn’t work. You just make the others angry and they will join your cause.
Exception, this is unless you have overwhelming fire power. Which the Mexican President tries to get from the USA, who are trying to protect their oil interests. However, in a rare example where my people do not turn into the “Ultimate Villains” of the story, the US Ambassador after having actually seen what was happening to the Catholics (via seeing a bunch of people hanging from some sort of telegraph or electrical poles) immediately does what America has a history of doing. Step and say “God Damn it, This is Bad and we will not Stand for IT!”
As this is set, however, before America became a superpower, he does what he can, which basically seemed to amount to as Get the Catholic Church to the table and tell the Mexican President “Sit down or we take our business elsewhere.” I think. And while the Christero Army might not have been happy about the Church negotiating, I did cheer for the Ambassador trying to save lives and promote religious freedom.
The story of the Army itself was pretty cool. It was a long movie, but it was dense and I suppose I can side with those who wanted more character development. It was a hit in Mexico, and I think a lot of Catholics liked it, though it seems here in the US it was largely panned. Probably because the Americans were “good” and it was about religious freedom against government tyranny.
Anyways, I’d say it was good, and informative. So go see it if you get the chance. At least rent it for the history, if nothing else.