Tonight I saw The Kingdom, and it’s a fantastic movie – given the current world climate, it’s highly relevant to everyone. The first couple of minutes give a great summary of the history of Saudi Arabia, oil, and its link to the United States of America. The story in The Kingdom is solid, the acting is great, and the cinematography is excellent – many times throughout the movie it felt like I was watching a documentary. The gun fights and explosions looked particularly realistic – everything was simply brutal. The last 30 minutes of the movie was being billed as “can’t miss” and it’s not an exaggeration – the pacing is relentless and refuses to let go until it winds down. The ending isn’t your typical “rah-rah America!” ending either – I won’t ruin it for you, but it paints a very realistic picture of how the cycle of violence is perpetuated.
Ashley and I had an interesting conversation on the way home about what it will take for the violence in the middle east to finally come to and end – and neither one of us was able to come up with a solution. That’s not surprising mind you, as many greater minds than ours have tackled this issue, but it’s always good to ponder such things. How do you break the cycle of violence? When it involves one person against another, death or prison tend to be the cycle-ending points. When it involves people of a certain belief system that number in the tens of thousands or millions, ending the cycle is much harder. The Kingdom is a movie worth watching – it might not help end the cycle of violence, but it gives us a glimpse into why the cycle keeps churning. And perhaps, armed with a bit of understanding, we can inch forward toward a solution.