Heaven’s Kingdom Extended

I’ve been trying to think of a movie to cover for this week and I think I have one. It’s one of my favorite films. Well it actually takes up two different places on my list of favorites. I’m talking about Kingdom of Heaven and the subsequent director’s cut. The one that’s higher up on my list is the director’s cut because of the fuller story. There were things explained better in the director’s cut than in the theatre released version.

Either version that you watch is set in the time around the Second Crusade. This is the story as told by IMDB.

It is the time of the Crusades during the Middle Ages – the world shaping 200-year collision between Europe and the East. A blacksmith named Balian has lost his family and nearly his faith. The religious wars raging in the far-off Holy Land seem remote to him, yet he is pulled into that immense drama. Amid the pageantry and intrigues of medieval Jerusalem he falls in love, grows into a leader, and ultimately uses all his courage and skill to defend the city against staggering odds. Destiny comes seeking Balian in the form of a great knight, Godfrey of Ibelin, a Crusader briefly home to France from fighting in the East. Revealing himself as Balian’s father, Godfrey shows him the true meaning of knighthood and takes him on a journey across continents to the fabled Holy City. In Jerusalem at that moment–between the Second and Third Crusades–a fragile peace prevails, through the efforts of its enlightened Christian king, Baldwin IV, aided by his advisor Tiberias, and the military restraint of the legendary Muslim leader Saladin. But Baldwin’s days are numbered, and strains of fanaticism, greed, and jealousy among the Crusaders threaten to shatter the truce. King Baldwin’s vision of peace–a kingdom of heaven–is shared by a handful of knights, including Godfrey of Ibelin, who swear to uphold it with their lives and honor. As Godfrey passes his sword to his son, he also passes on that sacred oath: to protect the helpless, safeguard the peace, and work toward harmony between religions and cultures, so that a kingdom of heaven can flourish on earth. Balian takes the sword and steps into history.

Of course with a film that covers one of the Crusades, Religion does play a large part of the movie but I think that it’s done very well. It tries to cover aspects of religion from multiple sides and doesn’t try to show one above the other. Of course some of the actual discussions would probably not been done at that period of history but of course this is a modern film about a historical event. But any kind of discussion should be happening and I think that this film is a great start to it. Since we do not truly know any of the characters (yes even Saladin) we see them in a different light. And surprisingly many of them can be found in an actual historical picture. It is interesting when you find out who is real in this movie.

I don’t mean it was interesting to learn that Baldwin IV was a real person. I was surprised to find that Balian was an actual historical figure. He was also considered the saviour of the people of Jerusalem in much a similar way as the film. What was changed for this film was his history. There is too much to cover here so I will just say that after watching the film you can have so many different things to research, if that kind of thing fascinates you. History is much more interesting than fiction and it is up to those who want to know to find the differences in this movie.

So I guess what I am saying about this movie is that it is not just for watching it is also a stepping stone for more discussions than I think I remember a film having in a while. I thank you for reading this and I hope you enjoy the movie. Until Monday. Have a good weekend.

A Step Back to an Odd Dichotomy

I am going to go a little more personal on this one. I’ve been noticing a funny difference in the way my work affects me vs. the way I would think that it would. First a little history that sets the idea. I am a person who truly enjoys things that force me to slow down. What I mean is that I like things that take time. Not all the time but it can very relaxing and can help quite, what I consider to be, my very active mind.

One example of this is something I bought for myself a number of years ago. It is an old style pen set. The kind of pen set that requires you to have a bottle of ink that you have to occasionally dip the pen into. Other than what you have to do while writing, the set up is very helpful since there is so much I have to do to get ready to write. I have an older style leather bound journal and I have recently thought about writing a couple of letters with it so I can get to my “happy place”. I love the idea of slowing down time. The idea of having to take time to do multiple steps. I hope that paints the picture that I want.

So now to work. At my job I put things on shelves. I actually put things on shelves that you might buy. It has more of a process than you might think. Or at least I see more of a process. The idea of finding what you have to put up. The opening of the box. The placing of the items on the shelf. In my mind there is a wonderful process to it.

With that then you would think that I would love my job but I don’t. There are many reasons why I don’t and you would think that many of them would be placated by the idea of a very process heavy job. It isn’t. I think because I am not really able to enjoy the process. The job I have is very time sensitive. I am not able to take the time to revel in the process. I am not one that minds being in a rush. I have had to be many times. I have even been able to revel in a process while being rushed while doing sound. I think the difference here is that I still have many questions to be answered. I have been at this job for 4 months and I still don’t know everything I need to do the job well. And I think that is where it truly lies. If I knew more I might even be able to revel in the process of my job.

I mean I have enough knowledge of sound that the differences and changes in my process are only because each situation is different. I feel good about those times because I know enough to change what I’m doing. Why I can’t stand the changes to my process at my work putting up stock is that they are controlled by the fact that I still don’t know enough. It is more controlled from outside than inside my head. It is controlled from people walking up to me and saying, “You shouldn’t do that like that. Here’s how you should do that.” I am thankful for the help but it does screw up my process. It is also a little annoying especially when someone tells you that you have to come up with your own process. But that is what we sometimes have to put up with isn’t it. And I thank you for staying with me this far. I fear I got a bit rambly and a bit non-cohesive but that seems to be part of my style on these personal things. Thanks for reading.

It is difficult

I will make this short and sweet. I am trying to make a post on my feelings about what happened in Boston I have been spending a few days now trying to find the right words and they are not coming. While trying to figure out what to say I do realize that I will probably piss someone off. I am grateful for all the readers that I have and I hope you will give me this extra week. Thank you again.