Most people I talk to really enjoyed this movie. I know that this movie isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but when you ask most people about what they thought, you get this wide-eyed response, “wow” it was amazing. Despite it’s “amazingness,” it does have several flaws. It’s incredibly agenda heavy. The story isn’t bad, but it’s not incredible by any means. The plot is predictable. If you remove all those things from the conversation, you’re left with the thing that truly makes this movie spectacular. The scale of CG that looks so incredibly real is mind baffling. The movie is essentially a 3 hour cartoon, but not a cartoon like you’ve ever seen, you feel like it’s a place you’ve been to. When coming out of the theater, I was thinking about the last time I had so much fun at a movie, where I so thoroughly enjoyed myself, I didn’t want it to end. For me it was probably the Lord of the Rings as they were so well done and I’d been anticipating the movies for so long (I saw the midnight showing for all three).
Here’s why this is important. It’s estimated that 500 million was spent on this movie. The studio claims to have only spent 230 million, but outside funding and even funding from James Cameron himself got the total cost up to 500 million. Epic! More notably, after just 4 weeks in theaters, Avatar has brought in $429 million. Not only is this movie going to be profitable, it will go down in the history books. After only 4 weeks in the theater, it just passed “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” as the 7th biggest money making movie of all time. Unheard of to do so well so quickly. Titanic sits at the #1 spot at almost 700 million. If any movie’s going to dethrone Titanic, Avatar probably can. Due to Avatar’s success, we’ll probably see more like it. More studios will rally toward success and rethink the way they make movies. This will inspire creativity in new ways. It’s a game changer.
We’ve seen other game changers. Three years ago when the Wii came out, it totally changed video games. Xbox and PS3 are making modifications to catch up with what Nintendo did right. Apple did it with the iPhone. For three years, no other phone has been able to do what the iPhone could. I think iPhone’s reign over the phone world won’t last too much longer, but to remain in that spot for three years with not significant contender? Amazing, they changed the game.
When I look at ministry, I see some game changers out there. Not a lot, but some. A decade ago it was the purpose driven movement. I was only part of a purpose driven church for a short time, but the purpose driven philosophy greatly impacted how I do ministry. There’s no doubt that Orange has been a game changer. I think ministry was beginning to look at what to do with family, but it was Reggie’s vision and leadership (and experience has he’s been living this out for a very long time) that rallied children and student pastors from around the world.
Game changers are never predictable. That’s what makes them game changes. If you had to guess though, what do you think is next?
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Not sure if Orange is as big as a game changer as some may think it is/was. It is certainly well known in the blog/twitter/FB world, but if you ask the average director of CM (and certainly the average CM volunteer) if they have heard of “Orange,” I’d bet not too many have.
In terms of future game changers, I think it will be the ever increasing awareness of the need for intentional family ministry of some sort. Be it Take It Home events, parenting discipleship conferences, family mission trips, milestone ministry, family integrated churches, whatever….it’s going to keep building momentum for quite some time.
.-= Dean Butterfield´s last blog ..Worshiping With Kids =-.
Of course Avatar will break records. Yes, it’s popular, but it also has increased ticket prices and the price-hike for 3D working in its favor. Calculate it for inflation and Titanic still holds up rather well 🙂
.-= Steve Tanner´s last blog ..What are you drinking? (1/8/10) =-.
Dean, I agree with you to an extent. I think the movement toward family driven ministry had already started, Orange just happened to be positioned to be one of the loudest voices in the room. I also don’t believe there will ever be 100% saturation either. Yes, probably the average CM director hasn’t heard of Orange, but it’s likely that the average CM director has been doing ministry the same way ministry has been done in his/her church for the past 50 years. If a CM director pokes his/her head out of obscurity and picks up a current ministry magazine or jumps online to get resources to grow in their area, they’re likely to find Orange and Rethink to provide significant content for family focused ministry. Many of the other curriculum providers (i.e. denominational publishers) are adapting based on what they’ve seen happening in recent years (some as a result of Orange). Maybe I’m being too generous with my praise. I’m speaking from my own experience. In nearly 15 years of ministry, I felt like I’ve kept my finger on the pulse of ministry and I have two defining moments in the direction I’ve led ministry. The first one was related to the purpose driven strategy and the second was an orange strategy.
Steve, you’re a Titanic lover, aren’t you. Actually I’ve read a long time ago that if you account for inflation, “Gone with the Wind” tops every list. I’ll be honest, it bothers me that Titanic is at the top of the list. Yes, there were some amazing things about that movie, but even when I think about the top movies I’ve seen in my life, Titanic isn’t even in the top 100. I’d love to see Avatar unseat Titanic for those reasons alone.
Just want to be on record as one of your friends who thought the movie was visual amazing and stupid everything else. I couldn’t wait for the movie to end. All I could think of was this is what smurfs would have been like if smurfs were very tall, very angry looking and had very bad writers.
Ha! I was waiting for your comment Sam. 🙂 A three hour movie is a long movie to can’t be able to wait for it to be over. 🙂
For the record, NOT a “Titanic” lover 🙂
Just one who doesn’t buy this “oh my gosh, it’s the reinvention of media on the big screen” argument
.-= Steve Tanner´s last blog ..What are you drinking? (1/8/10) =-.
Ha! I’m glad you cleared that up! 🙂
Not only are there a host of CM folks who have been doing ministry the same for years (and will continue to do so), but there are volunteers who don’t follow anything to do with CM leadership or family ministry trends. Their director / pastor might have heard of Orange (or Faith at Home, Tru & Rio, Bethel Seminary, etc.), but the average volunteer doesn’t know anything about it.
It may be a game changer for leaders, but not really for the vols. The biggest reason for this is simply b/c most churches don’t have the budget to send volunteers to these conferences and seminars, but struggle to get by with the limited resources they have. The average church size is less than 150 – including kids!
I think there is a bubble that exists in the church leadership world in which we think everyone is on the same page as we are. I doubt that is the case…
.-= Dean Butterfield´s last blog ..Children’s Pastor’s Conference =-.
No doubt a bubble exists. However, I don’t buy the 150 church size/limited budget excuse. Orange has been good for me. However, what changed me the most was the DVD “the essence of orange.” Even now, you can watch most of the Orange sessions online. And there have been enough written about orange as well as every other strategy that is all available online.
There’s plenty of information out there that’s free of cost. It’s just getting it into the hands of the masses. That’s the bigger challenge in this leadership bubble. It’s hard for me to get my head around a person pouring their heart into their ministry and never looking outside for resources. I just don’t get it.