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Cleanflix vs. RiP!

Have you ever seen a Mormon movie? So far as I can tell they fall broadly into a small handful of categories:

  • Dramatizations of episodes from e.g. The Book of Mormon
  • Stories from Mormon history
  • Mission narratives
  • The Mormon in society

Last year some time I got to see Baptists at our Barbecue (2004) [IMDB], which falls squarely into the last category. It’s mostly a “we can all get along” story but it also touches on the consequences of divorce within LDS families. As a work of art it’s no great shakes, but it’s better than a lot of Christian movies I’ve seen.

Have you heard about Cleanflix the movie [link]? It’s a documentary about movie rental stores in Utah that edited movies for content and then made the result available for rent. Here’s the trailer:

By way of contrast let me offer the trailer for RiP! A Remix Manifesto [hulu], a movie about copyright law, intellectual property, appropriation of culture, and the music industry:

I’m tempted to chalk up the differences to money: movie makers see movies as sacrosanct because they make movies, the music business not so much because they don’t make music. Apart from that I’m not sure why wanting to see a version of a movie that has been edited for content as part of one’s spiritual practice is dangerous while sampling music for the purpose of making new music is not.

Thanks to KtBniks for the tip [link]; they have a link to an essay about watching edited movies with Mormons, with backstory about ClearPlay, Cleanflicks, MovieMask, and Mormon president Ezra Taft Benson.

  1. December 7, 2010 at 1:36 am

    I think the best Mormon movies are States of Grace, Brigham City, Saints and Soldiers, The Errand of Angels, and New York Doll. The Baptists movies was awful. I saw this CleanFlicks documentary at the SLC film fest and it is great.

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