Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Monsters vs. Aliens

Monsters are your friends

In Monsters vs. Aliens, poor Susan Murphy (voiced by Reese Witherspoon) gets hit by a meteorite on her wedding day and proceeds to grow to over 50 feet tall in the middle of the ceremony. But that's not the worst part for poor Susan.

After she literally outgrows the wedding chapel, she is wrangled by the military and shipped off to live a life of solitude amongst other "monsters," away from civilization. That isolation, more than her newfound size (or the fact that she is given the new moniker "Ginormica"), is what makes her the most miserable.

What saves her, though, is the friendly company of several other "monsters" held in captivity like Susan - such as Dr. Cockroach (Hugh Laurie), the Missing Link (Will Arnett), and the lovable blob B.O.B. (Seth Rogan)... not to mention the Mothra-looking Insectosaurus.

If they weren't imprisoned, Susan is told, there would be mass panic by the general public. People would be repulsed, disgusted, and frightened by these "monsters," so for everyone's safety, it is best that they not come in contact with the real world.

Of course, when aliens come to earth (led by Gallixhar, voiced by Rainn Wilson), the only ones who have a chance at stopping them are those dreaded "monsters." And despite being rejected by society, the monsters rise above the humans in this story and give their all for the sake of those who persecute and hate them. It seems monsters aren't so bad after all.

We may not have Bigfoot locked up in Area 51 somewhere, but we still can treat others like "monsters" in our world today. For being a human race blessed by God with so much diversity, it seems we can hardly tolerate those who act, look, and think differently than us.

How do we treat those who are handicapped, disfigured, sick, overweight, or socially awkward? Do we embrace them as one of our own, or do we marginalize and isolate them?

And if we ourselves are treated like monsters by others, how do we respond? Do we react with anger and vengence, or do we love and give ourselves to others despite how they treat us?

No matter what side we find ourselves on, Christ calls on us to love unconditionally and respond without hatred. In fact, Christ sees no sides - instead he views us all as one, even if our society has created labels and divisions. "I call you all my friends," he told the disciples at the Last Supper, despite their differences (cf. John 15:15).

Monsters, it seems, are our friends, too.

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