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Table of Contents Introduction Main body Conclusion Work Cited Introduction What Dreams May Come (1998) is a fantasy drama film directed by Vincent Ward and starring Robin Williams as Chris Nielsen, the main character. The film presents the story of Chris and his wife Annie who lost their children in a car accident. Four years after the accident, Chris also dies in a car crash. Annie cannot cope with her losses and commits suicide. What is more important is that the film demonstrates what people can experience in the afterlife. Thus, the film directly deals with the question of spirituality because it represents the journey of Chris in Heaven and Hell. The focus is on the idea that Chris’s variant of Heaven is unique and created as a result of his own dreams. This provocative idea is only one among the interpretations of religion and spirituality proposed in What Dreams May Come. The film raises the questions of whether people can create Heaven by the power of thoughts and whether religious people can love each other more than they love God. One more important question to discuss is whether it is possible to go from Heaven to Hell and back. Main body In What Dreams May Come, religion and spirituality are represented from the perspective of Postmodernism. Thus, postmodern religion is associated with viewing spirituality as based on a person’s worldview, and multiple forms of religious views are possible, as well as various forms of individuals’ interpretations. In this film, after the death, Chris finds himself in Heaven that is a colorful result of his own dreams, and each person there has one’s own variant of paradise (What Dreams May Come). However, this individualistic approach to discussing Heaven is not typical of traditional Christianity. This vision can be discussed as the impact of postmodern religious views. Chris believes that he can change his variant of eternity with the power of his thoughts and dreams. In addition, the depicted variant of Heaven has no God in it, and Chris does not meet Him after the death that contradicts the views typical of traditional religions. Finally, the film promotes the idea of reincarnation in which the main characters find their relief. Still, this vision is not correlated with traditional religious views while focusing on Christianity; thus, there are no characters in the film who regard religion in a traditional way typical of Christianity. The key idea of the film is associated with the moment when Chris goes to Hell to meet his wife who has committed suicide. Thus, Chris leaves Heaven to rescue Annie whose reality in Hell is created as a result of the impossibility to forgive herself for the deaths of the members of the family and her son. There are several aspects related to this situation that can cause believers to ask questions. Firstly, Chris chooses the love for her wife and troubles associated with going to Hell instead of accepting God’s gift as Chris’s presence in Heaven (What Dreams May Come). Secondly, Annie’s spirituality is questioned because she seems not to ask God to forgive her sins, but instead, she suffers in Hell designed as a result of her imagination. Lastly, Chris and Annie can easily come from Heaven to Hell and back due to their spiritual growth, but these actions are impossible according to traditional doctrines. Therefore, the film seems to be more concentrated on the love of a man and a woman for each other that can overcome any barriers. In this case, Chris and Annie fail to ask God for assistance, mercy, and grace. Instead, the described afterlife is depicted as the place where people’s thoughts are more powerful than God’s will. Get your 100% original paper on any topic done in as little as 3 hours Learn More I should state that I cannot support the view regarding religion and spirituality presented in What Dreams May Come because it contradicts traditional Christian doctrines. While discussing the film from the perspective of Christians, it is possible to find many details that are in contrast to the Word of God. Furthermore, the overall message promoted in the film also contradicts the key Christian doctrines and principles in terms of depicting Heaven and Hell and people’s relations with God. In this story, the main focus is on the loving couple, and the depicted afterlife serves to accentuate the power of their love without reference to religious aspects. Thus, Chris and Annie find relief after their deaths not because of their reliance on God’s will, but because of their love and beliefs regarding their ideal life. Still, this film is an effective representation of beliefs associated with postmodern religious movements, but I cannot agree with them because of sharing Christian dogmas. Conclusion From this point, What Dreams May Come represents an alternative variant of religious views that are associated today with Postmodernism. While analyzing the film from the Christian perspective, it is possible to find many discrepancies with traditional religious views. Therefore, it is possible to state that a unique religious ideology is proclaimed with the help of this film. The main reason for possible disparities in religious views can be explained with the focus on the message of the film that is not truly religious in its nature. Work Cited What Dreams May Come. Directed by Vincent Ward, performances by Robin Williams, Cuba Gooding Jr., Annabella Sciorra, and Max von Sydow, Interscope Communications, 1998.
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