Support the Café
Search our site

Faith Reels: ‘Our Kind of Traitor’ … on which side?

Faith Reels: ‘Our Kind of Traitor’ … on which side?

by Bonnie Anderson and Dan Webster

 

One of the characters says early in this film that patience is required. That may have also been intended for the audience.

 

This is a 2010 thriller by British novelist John le Carre that finally made it to the big screen. The film is slow but filled with what you might expect from the Russian mafia, corrupt leaders, principled security agents and idealistic citizens. Some have compared this film to the “Bourne” films. It is a good story, keeps the audience interested, but it’s not an “edge of your seat” kind of movie.

 

Ewan MacGregor plays a university professor (aptly named Perry Makepeace) whose field is poetry. Stellan Skarsgard is the Russian with a photographic memory for things like, oh, say, bank account numbers. They strike up an unlikely friendship that tests MacGregor’s “honorable man” title to unparalleled limits. Naomie Harris stars as Gail Perkins, Perry’s lawyer spouse who has lots of common sense in contrast to Perry’s spontaneous “honorable at all cost” character.

 

There are a lot of ethical challenges in ‘Traitor’ that include many choices between good and evil. There’s even a conversation between the professor and the money-laundering Russian mafia guy. He quotes a Polish philosopher who posits that evil was not created by God but exists on its own. No argument there.

 

The film contains enough greed, avarice, lust, and addiction to fill, well, the pages of a novel. A lot of conversations among the characters about what’s motivating them to do good; to stand up to evil; to do the right and honorable thing.

 

If you have ever wondered what you might do when faced with a real choice between good or evil this film will ring bells for you. Seemingly easy answers don’t really come very easily. One thing for sure in this film, Perry definitely has a handle on, “love your neighbor as yourself.”

 

Bonnie Anderson is a very active lay leader in her parish, diocese and in the wider Episcopal Church. She is an experienced community organizer and lives in suburban Detroit. Dan Webster is an Episcopal priest in Baltimore, Maryland and a former broadcast news executive. But don’t expect only east coast urban perspectives here. As it turns out, they both grew up in Southern California.  They blog about films and faith at Faith Reels

Dislike (0)
Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinmail

Café Comments?

Our comment policy requires that you use your real first and last names and provide an email address (your email will not be published). Comments that use non-PG rated language, include personal attacks, that are not provable as fact or that we deem in any way to be counter to our mission of fostering respectful dialogue will not be posted.

Facebooktwitterrss
Support the Café
Past Posts
2020_001

The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition.  The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity.  Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.

The opinions expressed at the Café are those of individual contributors, and, unless otherwise noted, should not be interpreted as official statements of a parish, diocese or other organization. The art and articles that appear here remain the property of their creators.

All Content  © 2017 Episcopal Café