“The Stories We Tell” accomplished three thing for me as I read.
First, it opened my eyes to TV shows and movies that I had missed. This is not surprising, given the limited number of hours most of us have to watch TV or see movies and the growing library of material that directors, producers, and televisors are making available to the public. In at least one case, it directed me to a movie that I just read about in another book (a mystery) I had recently finished. I have added it to my “to be seen” list.
Second, the book demonstrates how today’s media echos Biblical truth - whether it intends to or not. Moving through the great themes of the salvation story, the author demonstrates how modern cultural media replays those themes on the either the big or small screen that consumes so much of our time. The need for God’s grace is evident not just in our lives, but in the lives of those we watch on TV or in our favorite movies.
Finally, the book provides a model that can be used by anyone who critiques the work of others - whether it be TV, movies, books, video games, etc. Most of what we read or watch will reflect what God has trying to show us throughout history and in his word. We see the glory of His creation, the result of the fall, offers of grace and the result of accepting or rejecting that grace.
The book is recommended for the pastor or layman who is attempting examine the media or using it to teach Biblical principles. The book may also have a place in the college classroom for those attempting to understand 21st century culture as it is played out in the media where a student is attempting to apply Biblical principles in evaluating that culture. It is one of the best book I have seen written for a general audience exploring culture and Biblical truth.
This review is based on a free electronic copy provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review. The opinions expressed are my own.