Terri and I just finished watching For Greater Glory. I must warn you, it is rated R for intense war violence. It is NOT an easy movie to watch. But after watching the film and the behind-the-scenes story, I believe it’s worth adults watching it to remind us that freedom is never free.
For Greater Glory is the true story of Cristiada, the war in Mexico in the early 20th century for religious freedom. After the Mexican Revolt in 1910, the new Constitution in 1917 basically stripped away all religious freedom. Obviously, the Catholic Church was and is the predominant church in Mexico and was seen as a threat to the government. Churches were shut down, and priests were murdered and martyred.
These rebels fought for their religious freedom against a government that wanted to marginalize, if not eliminate, religion in the land. It is amazing to me that such a historic event has been buried in the pages of history. The majority of Mexicans today don’t even know the event happened. It would be much like American’ not knowing about the War of 1812 (which many don’t). What is amazing is that the ban on religion is still in the Mexican Constitution, to be re-initiated by some future government.
My first takeaway from the movie is that freedom is worth fighting for. Secondly, we are one generation away from losing that freedom. Plus, an oppressive government that wishes to control any and all aspects of our lives will always see freedom of religion as a threat to their control.
The film also follows the spiritual journey of the general enlisted to lead the rebels in the war. He enters the war as an atheist, but, because of the faith of a small boy, he sees something worth dying for—the freedom of religion. There is a strong faith message in this film. Yes, it is heavily Catholic, but shouldn’t we all understand that if one faith is threatened, all faiths are threatened. That is what freedom of religion is about. Our forefathers came to this nation to be freed from the tyranny of forced religion. They established a nation not free from religion but freedom of religion. I believe those freedoms are being threatened today. We need a wake-up call. This movie is a reminder of how fragile these freedoms are.
I would not recommend this movie for children. Yet, it probably has no less violence in it than the thousands of video games parents let their kids play, which are rated “M” for mature.
While this movie is not for the weak of heart, it is for those who need a jolt to remind them that freedom, and particularly religious freedom, is always in danger. For Greater Glory depicts the convictions of Catholics in Mexico who rebelled against the government out of love for their God and their church.
It left me wondering, would I be willing to do the same?
(For more information on the movie, visit www.forgreaterglory.com and get a synopsis, see the trailer, or buy the film.)