[dropcap type=”4″]I[/dropcap]f there’s one thing Americans can agree on in this era of social discord, it’s that we love film. We spent a staggering $10 billion on movie tickets in 2009.

Joyce Coronel is a regular contributor to The Catholic Sun and author of “A Martyr’s Crown.” Opinions expressed are the writers’ and not necessarily the views of The Catholic Sun or the Diocese of Phoenix.
Joyce Coronel is a regular contributor to The Catholic Sun and author of “A Martyr’s Crown.” Opinions expressed are the writers’ and not necessarily the views of The Catholic Sun or the Diocese of Phoenix.

After a long week at work, there’s nothing like a getaway to the local cinema. Throw in a bucket of popcorn and an ice-cold soft drink and we’re lifted out of the humdrum of ordinary life.

And yet, when was the last time you saw a truly great film, one that inspired you, made you laugh or even shed a tear or two? There aren’t many movies like that these days.

Little Boy,” set to open nationwide on April 24, is just such a film, and its producers are hoping Americans will pack theaters and prove once again that there is a hunger for enduring themes such as faith, hope and love.

Local Catholic attorney John Jakubczyk has been helping to promote “Little Boy” over the last several months.

“The power of film in today’s society cannot be overestimated. Everyone is affected by the movies,” Jakubczyk said. “The big blockbusters are seen by everybody and those films influence the way people behave and the way they think.”


Auxiliary Bishop Eduardo A. Nevares of the Diocese of Phoenix offered a similar take on the impact of movies on culture.

“It’s very important that we get our Christian messages across in that medium to offset what is being produced by Hollywood and trying to be shown as the norm of our culture today,” Bishop Nevares said. “We need to always be in that medium with our countercultural message.”

It goes without saying that Hollywood’s agenda is, for the most part, unapologetically opposed to the principles of the Catholic Church. There’s a hunger inside of each of us, a void that can only be filled by love. And Hollywood’s version of love is a cheap imitation of the real thing.

Real love goes beyond the butterflies-in-the-belly phase and instead requires sacrifice, total self-giving and fidelity even when all seems lost. Real love is the stuff of the cross, in other words. Real love took on flesh and dwelt among us in the person of Jesus Christ.

If you care about rebuilding our culture, if you want to see films like this succeed, then make sure you see “Little Boy” opening weekend, April 24.

Consider if you will the fundamental shift in our country over the last 10 years regarding the truths of marriage and ask yourself if Hollywood has had any part in changing public opinion.

Through movies and television, the message has been loud, persistent and omnipresent: same-sex marriage is a social good; those who oppose it are haters.

Then a movie like “Little Boy” comes along and without ever entering the debate over marriage, shows us the depth of love between a father and son, between a husband and wife and the power of simple faith in God. There’s no ridicule of religion, no jabs at traditional values.

Eduardo Verástegui, one of the producers of “Little Boy,” said the goal was to not only entertain viewers, but to inspire them.

“Alejandro, Leo and I started this company with the goal of making films that would make a difference in people’s lives,” Verástegui said.

If you care about rebuilding our culture, if you want to see films like this succeed, then make sure you see “Little Boy” opening weekend, April 24. Attendance that weekend will determine how many prints of the movie get ordered.

I believe that people of good will are dismayed by Hollywood’s relentless campaign to redefine the family and by the amount of crassness and violence in today’s films. A movie like “Little Boy” offers a beautiful alternative. Let’s work together to help it succeed.

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