What My Kid Knew about Kubo

kubo[Spoiler alert: This post is about the end of the movie, Kubo and the Two Strings. However, since, I believe, the ending nearly spoils the film itself, you can read this and still enjoy the other, real pleasures of the movie.]

In the dramatic climax of Kubo and the Two Strings, our young hero defies the cold will of his grandfather, the Moon King, standing in a graveyard with nothing but his shamisen and delivering a (frankly) pretty forgettable speech about stories, memories, and identity.

His point, anyhow, is that our memories are our stories and our stories make us who we are. The ghosts of the dead rise up from the graves to reinforce this, and through some incomprehensible mechanism Kubo and the ancestors break the power of the Moon King.

In the wake of the battle, the Moon King has been transformed into an old man with no memory. “Who am I? What am I doing here?” he asks the gathered townspeople.

They quickly jump in with answers: “You’re one of the kindest, most generous citizens of our community,” they say (or something along these lines). “You’re loved by everyone.” A child adds, “And you always give children candy.” [Read more…]

Whispers of Faith in a Postmodern World

The Wall Street Journal featured this article by Image founder and editor Gregory Wolfe on Friday, January 11, 2013:

Among our national pastimes, there is none more persistent than the ritual lament over the decline and fall of the arts. The death of the novel . . . the end of painting . . . if an art form exists, we’re willing to believe it has seen better days.

Religious believers are equally prone to this sort of thing, and they often give it their own spin. One version goes like this….

Read more at The Wall Street Journal.


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