Before the Movie:
Understanding what it means to be a Discerning Believer, pause and reflect on your relationship with God. At home or school, begin a conversation about faith and one’s relationship with God.
Reflect: Is your relationship with God a positive one? Have you ever had a time where your relationship with God was troubled? What do you expect of God and what do you think God expects of you?
Each person has a unique relationship with God and taking the time to reflect on that relationship has the potential to strengthen faithful bonds. This may require time and patience depending on where you in your relationship with God and faith journey.
The journey is very much a discernment with the potential of hills and valleys.
During the Movie:
As you watch the movie, it’s important to recognize that the film is grounded in the promise of discernment. As Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) struggles to survive the catastrophic space accident that sets the tone for Alfonso Cuarons’s Academy Award winning film, her race against time becomes a character study of grief and faith.
As explored in the writing “I hate Space: Why Gravity Matters,” Catholic filmmaker Cuaron leverages the narrative of Science Fiction not merely to create wonderment and spectacle but to explore strife, anxiety, grief, anger and discernment about faith.
Although, God is not called by name, Dr. Stone’s grief in losing her daughter paves the Christian narrative of the film that comes to conclusion with her giving thanks. In many ways, gravity itself is God in the film, anchoring Dr. Stone on her journey of rebirth which is evident the the framing of her in the fetal position; the moment in the film where she connects with God in a new way.
After the Movie:
Whether in class with students or at home with family, Gravity provides an opportunity for us all to reflect on our relationship with God, the healing power of prayer and what it means to be a person of faith.
Reflecting as a discerning believer and also sharing as an effective communicator, encourage students and children to develop a prayer that speaks to their relationship with God all while you unpack the movie.
For students/children who are digitally literate, this prayer can be adapted into a video presentation, slide-deck, audio recording or even a Google slide-deck class/family prayer journal. Be creative and have fun!