Hello, My Movievaures! I hope you had a fantastic week. The summer break is almost finished, but we can comfort ourselves with some great shows that have been released lately, and today I’ll be talking about an amazing one that I just had the chance to watch: Under the Banner of Heaven. Right, it is not really a light-weighted entertainment, the type you watch during your holidays to pass time, but oh gosh how great the experience is. But first, let’s get to the non-spoilers part, so you can give it a chance if you don’t want to know the whole story.
After the murder of Brenda Wright Lafferty and her baby daughter, detective Jeb Pyre founds himself involved in a case that will question his Mormon faith as the brutality of this act will only be the tip of the iceberg of obscure practices coming from old beliefs of the Latter Day Saints church. This will jeopardize his family’s peace and stability, his own safety, and his beliefs.
I know the non-spoiler part is pretty vague, but if I get into more details I will clearly reveal the greatest parts of this story. As you might know, this mini-series is based on the book of the same name by Jon Krakauer, exposing the fundamentalism of Mormonism. In this Disney adaptation, we see it through the eyes of detective Pyre’s experience with the brutality of this conviction. Andrew Garfield is absolutely stunning in his role as Pyre, revealing such a degree of emotions and conflict. I’m amazed by his latest career choices and once again, he made a great one here.
I think the most compelling part about this story is the fact that everyone thinks they are on the right path. The only ones questioning their choices are actually the ones who try their best to do good. It also exposes an aspect of religion that is a source of constant controversy: the difference between those who believe but respect modern laws and then fundamentalists. I know some people might think it is an excuse, and all believers are the same, but clearly, this statement isn’t true.
There is also the family aspect which is addressed in an interesting way. Seeing the parallel between the Laffertys and the Pyres family, both acknowledge the same god, but with totally different visions of what a family should represent. Power is also at stake here, showing how far some people are ready to go in order to keep it, using religion and status as a tool to conceal it. Lastly, patriarchy and female servitude are also aspects that are highlighted throughout the show and reflect how must of this religion has contributed to maintaining the matriarchy in the shadows.
In short, I totally recommend watching Under the Banner of Heaven if you are looking for a true crime compelling storyline, with great acting and a profound message. It is not an easy show to watch and you might need a feel-good episode of your favorite show afterward, but it is worth it, I assure you. This is all for today My Movievaures! I hope you enjoyed reading this article and let me know in the comments down below, or on Instagram (the_movievaures) your thoughts. I’ll see you next week!