Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Cool Hand Luke Part 2

Last week, we finished Cool Hand Luke, so this week we discussed Christ-figures in film. After a brief sketch of ideas, we looked at two scenes from Superman---so here are some ideas of Superman as messianic archetype:

Divine Paternity

[5] David Bruce considered the infant Kal-El (Lee Quigley) to be the only begotten son of Jor-El (Marlon Brando), thus forming the second member of the Holy trinity (Matt. 28:19).12 Kal-El was the son of Jor-El just as Jesus was �the Son of God� (Mark 1:1; Heb. 10:29; 1 John 4:15). Indeed, in Superman II (hereafter S2), Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) described Superman (Christopher Reeve) as �the son of Jor El� thereby mimicking the biblical form. To further establish the paternity of the Jor-El/Kal-El, God/Jesus, Father/Son relationship, the holographic Jor-El in the newly constructed Fortress of Solitude specifically referred to Kal-El as �my son� and to himself as �your father.� Their indissoluble genetic link was further indicated by their respective hairstyles. The stately Jor-El, the teenage Clark Kent (Jeff East) and the adult Superman (but not the adult Clark Kent) had cute forelocks dangling upon their foreheads. This biological fact resonated with Jesus�s identity claim that: �if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also� (John 14:7).


My Thoughts:

First, Kal-El and Jor-El are plays on the generic Hebrew names for God: אל (El)-singular and אֱלוֹהִים (Elohim)-plural.

Secondly, A transliteration of Jesus’ Hebrew name, which means “Jesus the Messiah.”---also, spells the tetragrammaton out in initials, which is God’s revealed name.
יהוה or Yahweh and Jesus is Yahshua or יהשוה.

Third, for further info.

Last, should provide more info---especially:

An influence on early Superman stories is the context of the Great Depression. The left-leaning perspective of creators Shuster and Siegel is reflected in early storylines. Superman took on the role of social activist, fighting crooked businessmen and politicians and demolishing run-down tenements.[33] This is seen by comics scholar Roger Sabin as a reflection of "the liberal idealism of Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal", with Shuster and Siegel initially portraying Superman as champion to a variety of social causes.[34] In later Superman radio programs the character continued to take on such issues, tackling a version of the KKK in a 1946 broadcast.[35][36] Siegel and Shuster's staus as children of Jewish immigrants is also thought to have influenced their work. Timothy Aaron Pevey has argued that they crafted "an immigrant figure whose desire was to fit into American culture as an American", something which Pevey feels taps into an important aspect of American identity.[37]

Siegel himself noted that the many mythic heroes which exist in the traditions of many cultures bore an influence on the character, including Hercules and Samson.[6] The character has also been seen by Scott Bukatman to be "a worthy successor to Lindberg ... (and) also ... like Babe Ruth", and is also representative of the United States dedication to "progress and the 'new'" through his "invulnerable body ... on which history cannot be inscribed."[38] Further, given that Siegel and Shuster were noted fans of pulp science fiction,[14] it has been suggested that another influence may have been Hugo Danner. Danner was the main character of the 1930 novel Gladiator by Philip Wylie, and is possessed of same powers of the early Superman.[39]

Because Siegel and Shuster were both Jewish, some religious commentators and pop-culture scholars such as Rabbi Simcha Weinstein and British novelist Howard Jacobson suggest that Superman's creation was partly influenced by Moses,[40][41] and other Jewish elements. Superman's Kryptonian name, "Kal-El," resembles the Hebrew words קל-אל, which can be taken to mean "voice of God".[42] [43]. The suffix "el", meaning "(of) God"[44] is also found in the name of angels (e.g. Gabriel, Ariel), who are flying humanoid agents of good with superhuman powers. Jewish legends of the Golem have been cited as worthy of comparison,[45] a Golem being a mythical being created to protect and serve the persecuted Jews of 16th century Prague and later revived in popular culture in reference to their suffering at the hands of the Nazis in Europe during the 1930s and 1940s. Superman is often seen as being an analogy for Jesus, being a saviour of humanity.[41][45][34][46]

Whilst the term Superman was initially coined by Nietzsche, it is unclear how influential Nietzsche and his ideals were to Siegel and Shuster.[41] Les Daniels has speculated that "Siegel picked up the term from other science fiction writers who had casually employed it", further noting that "his concept is remembered by hundreds of millions who may barely know who Nietzsche is."[6] Others argue that Siegel and Shuster "could not have been unaware of an idea that would dominate Hitler's National Socialism. The concept was certainly well discussed."[47] Yet Jacobson and others point out that in many ways Superman and the Übermensch are polar opposites.[40] Nietzsche envisioned the Übermensch as a man who had transcended the limitations of society, religion, and conventional morality while still being fundamentally human. Superman, although an alien gifted with incredible powers, chooses to honor human moral codes and social mores. Nietzsche envisioned the perfect man as being beyond moral codes; Siegel and Shuster envisioned the perfect man as holding himself to a higher standard of adherence to them.[48]

Siegel and Shuster have themselves discussed a number of influences that impacted upon the character. Both were avid readers, and their mutual love of science fiction helped to drive their friendship. Siegel cited John Carter stories as an influence: "Carter was able to leap great distances because the planet Mars was smaller that the planet Earth; and he had great strength. I visualized the planet Krypton as a huge planet, much larger than Earth".[22] The pair were also avid collectors of comic strips in their youth, cutting them from the newspaper, with Winsor McKay's Little Nemo firing their imagination with its sense of fantasy.[49] Shuster has remarked on the artists which played an important part in the development of his own style, whilst also noting a larger influence: "Alex Raymond and Burne Hogarth were my idols — also Milt Caniff, Hal Foster, and Roy Crane. But the movies were the greatest influence on our imagination: especially the films of Douglas Fairbanks Senior."[50] Fairbanks' role as Robin Hood was certainly an inspiration, as Shuster admitted to basing Superman's stance upon scenes from the movie.[51] The movies also influenced the storytelling and page layouts,[52] whilst the city of Metropolis was named in honor of the Fritz Lang motion picture of the same title.[22]


Next we watched two scenes from Green Mile. See and

Last we watched the last scene of Cool Hand Luke again in honor of Paul Newman who ironically died the week we finished the movie.

---Luke's death and resurrection?


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