Views from the Pews: Niche interest or global phenomenon?

Stephen Caddy Toll Gavel Church, Beverley.
Stephen Caddy Toll Gavel Church, Beverley.

I was taken to the cinema at Flemingate to see the film “Warcraft: The Beginning”” by a keen player of the “World of Warcraft” computer game on which the movie is based.

We stayed after the rest of the audience left to watch the credits. It was worth watching if only to discover that the “sheep” was a character called One Take Charlie!

Stephen Caddy Toll Gavel Church, Beverley.

Stephen Caddy Toll Gavel Church, Beverley.

The Parkway Cinema staff waited patiently to lock up behind us and were keen to talk about the film.

While the film has had enormous success in China and has been number one in a range of countries, it was more of a commercial risk here and so it was interesting to hear how close a decision it was to screen it in Beverley.

Are there enough players to make an audience?

How wide will the interest be?

Naturally my companion, knowing the game, picked up on a lot of the subtler references that I missed.

While there will be those who think ‘What’s not to love about a film that’s got Orcs?’ others may take more convincing; yet there were themes in the story that are relevant to all our lives – love, courage, integrity, corruption, alliances, migration and the environment.

The same dilemma can be true about many events that want to appeal both to the core participants and to reach a wider audience.

It may be that whatever adds depth and colour to your life is something you have in common with others who share your passion.

Do you at the same time want others to discover and become part of the same music scene, sporting league, craft club or whatever it is that enriches your life?

Does it matter to you if other people don’t get it?

Church is just one of many fields that want to be accessible to both new people and have depth for its committed members.

Indeed that’s an essential part of what church is all about.

While for some, church remains a hard-to-understand niche interest, for others it’s a global phenomena it’d be impossible to live without.

If the management of the cinema I went to had made a different call and chosen to screen another film I guess I would not have gone.

I’m left wondering who I’ve included and who I’ve excluded by the calls and choices I make.