curse of the sequels

i just got back from mckinney. i was part of a caravan from the church taking our youth group to lunch and to see pirates of the carribean 3. we ate at culvers-- a great place, thanks again royce. we dealt with fierce rain on the way, and more on the way back, though not as bad. i drove four teenage girls in my car. they were lots of fun, a reminder of the days when i hauled youth all over the place for various activities.

christy and i liked the first pirates movie-- come to think of it, i saw it in that same cinema in mckinney in 2003. i thought johnny depp's riffs on keith richards as a pirate were hilarious. and the legend himself shows up briefly in episode 3. not much need for makeup either! anyway, we liked the first one, then ordered part 2 on netflix a while ago. it was part of the first post-24 shipment, probably dooming it. after about three weeks sitting on top on the tv, we plugged it in, watched about five minutes, and turned it off. it went back to netflix the next day. it wasn't because it didn't look good, we just had no interest in continuing.
this installment was fair, entertaining, but not thrilling or exciting. this is now the third three-quel i have seen this summer, after spiderman and shrek. christy is counting down the days until ocean's 13 is released. spiderman was all right but honestly boring, shrek wasn't funny at all-- even james laughed only a handful of times-- but ask him and he'll say he loved it. pirates will probably have the same impact. driving back in the rain, that's probably a fair summary of how the four new sophomores felt.
last sunday in church we sang one of the classics, i love to tell the story. filmmakers love to tell their stories too, especially when they net in the hundreds of millions like the pirates movies have-- and will (is there a #4 on the way?) the hymn of course speaks of the gospel of Christ as the old, old story. no superheroes or fictional characters, no special effects. it is certainly filled with amazing, eye catching scenes, but they are, as the hymn says, "scenes of glory."
there are more sequels and three-quels coming soon to a cinema near you. but the more those stories are hashed out the less interesting they become. at a local church this weekend, yes, even on a holiday weekend, a story will be told again, as it has for centuries. the difference is, the more stories we tell about Jesus, the more life saving, life changing they become.
i love to tell the story-- over and over again.