Nine Days That Changed The World

4 10 2010

Joined my dad and sisters today to see Nine Days That Changed The World, a documentary produced by Newt Gingrich about Pope John Paul II’s role in Poland’s transition away from communism.

Newt and Callista Gingrich introduce their film at Little Havana's Tower Theater

The film was worth seeing, but not worth going too far out of your way for. It’s an inspiring story, and one that—I think—Cubans and Cuban exiles can learn a lot from when it comes to what the Church’s role ought to be in Cuba.

Part biography, part documentary of a peaceful revolution, it went on just a bit too long. And the parts that actually showed Callista Gingrich narrating were way too awkward (she doesn’t seem to be able to turn off the “politician’s wife” thing… always smiling, always the same hyperbolically pleasant tone in her voice). Also, the passing references to the “lies of Marxism and Leninism” seemed out of place. I’m not saying those philosophies aren’t riddled with lies, but the film does nothing to detail the lies—and without explanation, the phrase feels like an obnoxious platitude.

But if you can get over that (and I probably made those things sound worse than they were), you’re left with a very thorough account of one of the biggest changes that any one person has triggered in a very long time. A great story about the changes one peaceful person made when he realized a problem called for principles, not pragmatism.

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