Friday, 5 August 2011

If You Watch Enough Crap

A Wide Range of... Interests
Amongst my many interests such as Project Management, Magic, and Mysticism there are also some items that I’m less excited about publicizing.

One of those is watching what some people refer to as B-movies. Well, OK perhaps some could be referred to as Z-movies but I take great enjoyment in any film that includes space pirates, explosions, helicopters, cheesy one-liners and general mayhem.

As one of my colleagues who became a recent unintended stakeholder in my hobbies put it: “Simon you’re interested a small range of high brow areas and well… a wide range of utter crap”.

A Hidden Gem
However, with the chance of find a hidden gem or two I continue on my ongoing quest to boldly explore strange new B-movies. One of the recent gems was a film called: “In the Name of the King

If we ignore for the moment the plot, script, some of the acting and certainly the way that the Krugs were portrayed in the film…. The plus side of the film is that it included the always entertaining (in my opinion) Jason Statham and the gorgeous Claire Forlani.

Anyway, if you’re still reading this then please bear with me for a moment longer as this post does contain a gem of interest from a Jewish magic point of view.

Glimpse of Magical Text
In the film the character called Muriella (played by Leelee Sobieski) who is learning magic. During one scene there is a brief glimpse of the book that she is studying which is shown in the image below:

My first impression was: “Ah, they’ve done that thing of including Hebrew characters to make it look magical”. And then it struck me, the text is from the Torah portion Ha’azinu!  (Marked within red box in image below showing right hand column of text, the left side if missing from the picture).

The film researchers must surely have done their job well to pick this section since the Rabbis believe that this Torah portion contains the letter combinations for everyone’s name as illustrated by this story of Ramban (Nahmanides) and his student. (Links here and here)

Haazinu Text linked from Wikipedia

In short the Ramban’s student becomes an apostate, summons his old teacher after gaining a position of worldly power and challenges Ramban to find the former student’s name in the portion of Ha'azinu. The Ramban does so - the ex-student realizes the error of his ways and goes on walk-about to seek forgiveness for his wrongdoings.

I’m impressed by the research done by the makers of “In the Name of the King”. The brief glimpse of the portion of Ha’azinu shows that they understood its message and this is reflected in the teacher versus ex-student plot that plays a significant part in the film.