Film Friday Thought: The Power of the Dog

The title of this film comes from the Bible, from one of the Psalms – 22 verse 20, ‘Save my precious life from the sword and from the power of the dog.’ It’s a topical Psalm for this time of year as it’s the one Jesus quotes in his bleakest moment. ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ A line full of despair and emptiness. Through his life Jesus had done what he saw his heavenly father doing, they were that close. Now his father seems far away, and Jesus feels lost in the dark and the pain. Now Jesus experiences the terror of feeling that God has abandoned him. And so he dies. The Power of the Dog is not a film about that experience, but it is a story of damaged people struggling with life. Like so many other films, it’s about people who need redemption, and rescue. Life can be hard and empty and full of burdens, and in that moment on the cross Jesus experienced the full weight of these things. That is the message of Good Friday, that we all need rescuing, we all need fresh starts and the power of forgiveness in our lives. We all need light in our darkness and a new way in this damaged and fractured world.

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