Vodcast: What Would Paddington Do?

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Paddington 2 lands in theaters today. And if you missed this lovable stuffed bear’s big-screen debut back in 2015, well, suffice it to say this sequel offers more of the same.

Now sometimes, more of the same is a bad thing. But in the case of Paddington, it’s actually a good thing. Because as cute and cuddly as this teddy bear who hails from the jungles of “deepest, darkest Peru” might be, his story this time around actually packs some great messages about how to make good, wise decisions in life.

So take five minutes or so and check out what Paddington 2 reviewer Kristin Smith and I had to say about this delightful CGI bear’s latest adventure in this installment of the Official Plugged In Vodcast.

Who wrote this?

Adam R. Holz is a senior associate editor for Plugged In. He also writes for Focus on the Family’s Clubhouse magazine and has been a Boundless contributor. In his free time (which there is sometimes precious little of) Adam enjoys playing guitar and constructing LEGO kits with his son. Adam and his wife, Jennifer, are the proud parents, in fact, of three children, one boy and two girls.

Have something to say? Leave a comment.

Anonymous 1 days ago
Remember guys, before you comment and accuse other people, think about what you are writing and ask yourself....

What would Brian Boitano do
If he was here right now,
He'd make a plan
And he'd follow through,
That's what Brian Boitano'd do.
When Brian Boitano was in the olympics,
Skating for the gold,
He did two salchows and a triple lutz
While wearing a blind fold.
When Brian Boitano was in the alps, 
Fighting grizzly bears,
He used his magical fire breath,
And saved the maidens fair.
So what would Brian Boitano do 
If he were here today,
I'm sure he'd post a thing or two,
That's what Brian Boitano'd do. 
And I just want bobed 
To stop fighting everyone 
For Paul Asay I'll be an film reviewer, too,
Cos that's what Brian Boitano would do. 
And what would Brian Boitano do,
He'd call all the kids in town, 
And tell them to unite for truth
That's what Brian Boitano would do. 
When Brian Boitano travelled through time
To the year 3010,
He fought the evil robot kings
and saved the human race again 
And when Brian Boitano built the pyramids, 
He beat up Kublai Khan.
Cos Brian Boitano doesn't take smack from an-e-y-body
So lets all get together, 
And unite to post our thoughts
And we'll save the comment section too,
Cos that's what Brian Boitano do.
And we'll save comment section too, 
Cos that's what Brian Boitano dooooo,
That's what Brian Boitano do.

:)
bobed 1 days ago
How come you're anonymous now, Evan? Even better question, how come I'm not allowed to call somebody arrogant, but it's fine and dandy for you to post lyrics from the filthiest show of all time, South Park, multiple times?
Anonymous 1 days ago
For some reason, I can't comment through Facebook anymore. But you do get a cookie for guessing who I am! :)
bobed 1 days ago
I don't deserve a cookie. Thank goodness only ONE person around here trolls by posting random song lyrics.
Anonymous 1 days ago
Do you wanna be the second guy to post song lyrics here?
bobed 1 days ago
God wants us to honor him fully in our media choices. That means full commitment. Not half-way. Not sometimes. All the time. All the way. Full stop.
bobed 3 days ago
Frankly, sometimes the temptation is huge to just give up, throw out the TV, and live like the Amish. No more movies - the kids can read books or play with puzzles. No more shows - the kids can make up their stories, like I did when I was a kid. 

There are two reasons for this. Number one: frankly, I don't think total obedience to God is possible without total rejection of the world. I know it has become unrealistic for us today - and I understand; it's not financially feasible for me either - but I'm slowly coming to realize that God calls us all to a life of service to him. And that does NOT entail "going to church every third Sunday if you feel like it, and standing up during the hymns even if your legs ache." No. Total obedience to Christ would entail giving up media, giving up comforts, giving up *everything,* and going out to preach. Full-time. Forever. Winning souls for God. Shunning the world entirely, learning not to love the world, and learning to devote ourselves mind, body and spirit to God and only God. This is what God wants, and as the years pass, I believe it more and more. Someday I dream of giving up my life and doing this. Maybe after all my kids are gone.

Reason number two: it has become SO monumentally hard to find a show, even for the tiniest of kids, that reflects God's values without any inappropriate content. We watched Good Luck Charlie as a family until it was ruined by the inclusion of highly inappropriate lesbian themes. We heard with scowls about how the kids shows Steven Universe and Legend of Korra (neither of which our kids watched, thank goodness) included very prominent gay themes as well. That sort of thing is happening routinely now, and it stinks. Kids' shows are pushing the envelope, and when the envelope (AKA parents) doesn't push back, they feel free to push even further. 

Movies are just the same, only worse. It's a nightmare to find a movie for kids that isn't sexual. Shaun the Sheep Movie is the ONLY example of a completely appropriate kids' movie in recent years - not a single thing wrong with it. What a rare gem! Sure, there was a moment where the sheep dressed up as a "woman," but personally I don't think this winks at homosexual things the way Paddington did. And still I wonder, why are inappropriate moments necessary to include? To wink at the adults? Give me a break. What kind of adult wants to be "winked" at during a movie meant for their kids? I know I don't.

I have been noticing a huge trend in the past few years where many kids' movies and TV shows sneak in a lesbian moment. Not a gay one, usually - a lesbian one. Lesbians are more palatable, I suppose. Legend of Korra, Finding Dory, Steven Universe, Good Luck Charlie, the list goes on. And no one finds this suspicious? 10 years ago, even, this would've been unthinkable. Folks, we're the frog in the pot and we're being boiled.
Anonymous 3 days ago
What about living in the world and not of it? John 17:14-15? I don't think we can follow God if we are not in the world. Also, it is not an expensive choice to not participate in watching tv shows and movies. Just don't watch them. But I assure you, books are not much better, especially the stuff that is considered 'popular' nowadays. To your point on kids movies, most kids movies are considered comedies. Whether you as an individual find the films or certain jokes in the film funny is not the point, the job of the filmmakers is to make the film as entertaining for as many people as possible. They don't really care who does or does not enjoy their humor as long as it brings them money. 
Just some thoughts.
-AR
bobed 3 days ago
What ABOUT living in the world and not being of it? That's exactly what I'm talking about. We're living in the world no matter what - we can't help it. But we can help whether we embrace it or not.

Books ARE, indeed, much better. There are waaaaaay more appropriate Christian books for kids being produced than appropriate movies for kids. Ten times more.
bobed 3 days ago
I often find myself wondering about the state of these forums. So many people here seem to be unaware, blind, or simply apathetic towards the state of the media they consume. So many people seem willing to let "little things" slide. Why are you here if that's the case? 

PluggedIn's job is to catalog the "little things" so that you can decide whether your family will watch a movie. The very nature of this website is to nitpick and hunt down those small, minor moments that don't seem like much, but to a discerning Christian's eyes, make or break a movie. If you don't agree with that - if you think a Christian can watch whatever he chooses because "they're just movies" - then why are you here???

I'm here because I agree with PluggedIn's mandate, because I regularly use their reviews to judge whether a movie is clean enough for my kids, and because, as someone who would consider himself a movie enjoyer, I would like to have some intelligent discussion with fellow Christian parents about the state of cinema today. (Sigh - it's not to be. Is anyone here even over the age of 21?) That's why I am here, and I would expect that is why everyone who comments on these posts is here. But apparently, it's not the reason why. So why are you here? I'd really like an answer.

Philippians 4:8:  Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

1 Corinthians 15:33: Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.

1 John 2:15-17: Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.

Matthew 6:22-23: The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, 23 but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! (Note: this verse is especially important, because it points to the fact that what we see with our eyes - AKA, the media we consume - has a marked, Biblically-proven effect on our body and soul.)
Anonymous 3 days ago
I'm here to get an overview of the movies I'd like to watch, and to decide if something is over the limits for me. I don't stick to the letter of Plugged In's reviews - I have my own standards. Some things that they end up flagging as bad and awful, I find okay* - other things, that they have no problem with, I find horribly unsettling or disturbing. (The whole Interstellar movie, for instance. P.I. said that it could be used as a great conversation starter for God and intelligent creation [that's not to say they didn't have problems with it!]. "To see God behind it requires only one small step for moviegoers." I, on the other hand, found the movie so frustrating I never want to see it again...which is sad, because it's a fantastic movie. It just falls short, theologically, because there is no hint of that "small step" toward God. But, I can understand why people can use it as a jumping-off point for discussions about our Lord. I personally can't. Different standards.)

People have different opinions of what they find acceptable or not. Context is important, but so too are mildly differing standards. Yes, our culture today is floundering - yes, some Christians find themselves veering off from what the Bible says - but I'd say the people on these forums/blogs here are solid, decent, mature people who can decide for themselves if a "little thing" will "make or break" a movie. Why are you so condescending toward people?

*And by "okay," I mean that I note the issue, decide what I think about it (by talking to my family about it), and then choose to discard said issue in favor of enjoying the rest of the movie. That doesn't mean I accept it, or that I think it's perfectly fine (I don't!) - I just don't let it influence the whole movie. And I don't let it influence me, either. I am not an impressionable child. The same goes, I would say, for the people on these forums. They make their own decisions about the media they, their family, and their children consume, and they make their own decisions about how to handle issues in that media.

- Lionsong
bobed 2 days ago
TWO posts have been deleted for absolutely no reason. Let me repeat: I don't agree with your message. I guess the whole "I'm praying for you" part is considered too controversial for a Christian website. 
Anonymous 2 days ago
Or it could've been your perceived holier-than-thou attitude. Even if you didn't mean your words that way, it sure came across as such. Calling me "willfully blind" and "unspeakably arrogant" (in the post that was deleted) is a tad bit beyond "I don't agree with your message."

Obviously, you're allowed to disagree. Just as I'm allowed to disagree with you.You don't need to resort to personal attacks to do so. (And before you pounce on my "Why are you so condescending toward people?" question in my first post as an "example" of personal attacks...it wasn't. I'm questioning your apparent attitude, not you.)

- Lionsong
bobed 1 days ago
Let me mirror your words. Since you have already taken it upon yourself to pounce on my "unspeakably arrogant" designation as an example of a personal attack, I will rebut. I'm criticizing your attitude, not you. Your assumption that you are able to somehow stop yourself, through sheer force of will, from being influenced by the media you consume? Yes, that assumption is very arrogant. You call me condescending, I call you arrogant. My posts are deleted, yours aren't. Hmm.

As for willful blindness, I get why you're offended by that...to a certain point. But it's not an insult. I'm not purposefully trying to offend you. I need you to understand that. Everything I say is written out of love and out of a sincere desire to impart the truth of Christ, which I believe you are lacking in. 

I totally get why people think I'm "holier-than-thou." I'm not holier than you - we're all broken sinners, me included. I'm just as sinful as you. It's just that - based on what you have said about your media habits - I am trying much harder than you to keep myself holy. In that way, I guess I AM holier-than-thou. Again, I'm not trying to insult or offend. Everything I write is written out of a sincere effort and desire to lead people closer to the truth. 

I believe that you could have a better relationship with Christ if you would only realize that Christ does not want you to be half-committed to him, or three-quarters committed, or "our family only goes to church on Easter and Christmas Eve, and only if we feel like it" committed. And especially not "inappropriate and anti-God moments in media, which the Bible tells us are wrong, are okay in tiny doses" committed. You can lie to yourself, but you can't lie to God. Is there no inkling in your heart that tells you that Christ is not okay with your habits? 

A good litmus test is this - and I know you've probably heard this before, but I'm going to say it anyway: when you watch something or listen to something, imagine Christ is beside you, partaking as well. (And He is.) Most likely, those "little moments" will become a lot bigger. 

I'm not saying that everyone's perfect or that every tiny moment in a movie makes it unwatchable. But when we watch a movie with instances of anti-Biblical behavior, we must be careful that these moments don't become invisible to us. We must be careful that we don't become desensitized. And I think you might be in danger of that, if you haven't already become fully numb. When that happens, little things become nothing, and big things become little things, and your heart becomes hard. 

I understand that you may be offended by the things I say, and I understand that you may ignore them. But I want you to know tha tI don't spend my time writing these things because I want to tick you off. If I didn't really care about you and your spiritual life, I wouldn't be typing all this stuff. I would throw up my hands and go do something more fun, like watching paint dry. But I don't throw up my hands and go watch paint dry, and that's because I care. Christ has placed in me a genuine desire to help. You may not believe that this crotchety old fool, who wants to legislate fun and joy into illegality, genuinely cares. But I do.
Holly B. 2 days ago
Nothing personal, but your second post was tied into your first, which went against our posting guidelines - we don't allow name calling or links to outside websites. If you'd like to post your respectful opinion again, we'll be happy to approve it.
bobed 1 days ago
The link to an outside website was a link to CapAlert, a site which is pretty much exactly like this one, only perhaps slightly more stringent in cataloging bad content in films. I understand that it's a blanket rule, but I never linked to anything inappropriate. As for name-calling, I would very much like to contest this. I never called anyone a name. My post was not condescending or rude - it was convicting, written out of serious passion for Christ, and every word was the truth. Some people don't like the truth. I will speak it anyway - without calling anyone names.
bobed 7 days ago
I would be happy to see a sweet and innocent kid's movie like Paddington. Unfortunately, the first movie had transgender/homosexual/drag themes, and so does the second. To be honest, it's nothing I would ban my kids from watching. We watched the first movie together and during the offending instances, I paused and had a little discussion with them. But even though I don't think these moments ruin the movie entirely, I do wish they weren't present at all. 
charitysplace 3 days ago
I must have missed that; what scene was that?
bobed 3 days ago
I'm not sure why you can't just click on the Pluggedin review above. But since you insist, I will copy paste for you.

Movie 1: "To help Paddington look for vital information on the English explorer, Mr. Brown dresses up as a maid. A guard then proceeds to flirt with him. "It's unusually hot," Mr. Brown says, embarrassed. "Just like you," the man replies."

Movie 2: "Phoenix, while dressed in a disguise as a nun, is described by a male security guard as an "unusually attractive woman." We also hear a repeated joke about how he has "really nice buns."

Not sure why this cross-dressing theme was considered so hilarious that the filmmakers had to not only include it in the first movie, but in the second as well. It's sad - the movies could've been perfect family fare. 
Dan Haynes 3 days ago
Paddington is a very British creation, and for totally non-sexual reasons, Brits love their men in drag for comedic effect. It's not a new thing at all. Everything doesn't have to be dirty and nefarious. 
bobed 3 days ago
Huh? So now these themes are okay for our kids because it's a cultural thing? I don't think so. That's a very, very lame excuse. 

If it's a cultural thing in Britain to enjoy homosexual/drag themes in movies for kids, then okay, so be it. It's also a cultural thing in my household to dislike and stand against such themes. I guess we won't be traveling to England anytime soon if that's how they look at things.
Anonymous 3 days ago
But then you'll miss out on Doctor Who, Alton Towers, Tea, and Fish and Chips!
bobed 3 days ago
We have tea, fish and chips over here, thanks. As for Doctor Who, I'm not much of a sci-fi fan. Not sure I'm "missing out" on anything. Seems very childish. Alton who?
Anonymous 3 days ago
Alton Towers is one of the best amusement parks in the world apparently, BTW.
bobed 3 days ago
Okay. Never really been interested in amusement parks. Waste of money. (Yes, I know I'm a crusty old curmudgeon who's allergic to fun, you don't need to tell me for the dozenth time.)
Anonymous 3 days ago
Yo, Bobed, you a fan of MST3K?
bobed 3 days ago
Nope.
Anonymous 3 days ago
That's too bad, because sometimes I think that you "need to repeat to yourself it's just a show, I should really just relax!" ;)
bobed 3 days ago
Wow, thank you, Guru Anonymous, for your incredible words of wisdom - even though they're 100% wrong.

It's never "just a show." When we watch a piece of media, we take it into our minds and our hearts. It influences you, even if you don't think it does. If it's garbage, then you are consuming garbage. Would you tell a friend who was chowing down on trash from a dumpster, "Relax! It's just food"? No, because that would be a lie.

Paddington isn't trash - at least, I don't think so. The first movie was a delightful and fun romp, if slightly dark. However, it included a moment that was not appropriate for families. That is unfortunate, and should rightly be a major talking point among Christian parents. However, unfortunately most Christian parents couldn't care less - either about small moments like the drag queen moment in Paddington, or huge content concerns like the constant sexualization of Illumination's Sing. No one cares.

Christian parents of today seem perfectly content to let their kids chow down on garbage - or worse, feed their kids garbage by their own hands. It's an epidemic. And it's not, ever, "just a show."