I have read much around St. Blog's on this film and I suppose I do no service writing yet more, and yet I feel impelled.
I don't know what to make of those who say that the film is not a good film or less than art. To my mind, art is that which best invokes and reminds one of the Divine. In some cases that art may not be timeless, but relentlessly grounded in its time--inaccessible to all outside of that time. But for the moment I will put away that discussion.
Let us review the film on a more personal basis. The Holy Spirit spoke to me through the film and stirred to life again some barely smoldering fire that is stirred too rarely. The film, despite some minor flaws, hit me powerfully with the hammer of myth, reminding me for a moment of what it means to be human. I know this is not a helpful review because it is so personal. And yet, I feel that I must say it as so many may have been disturbed by the negative currents prevalent in blogland.
The bottom line--the film made me think of God, thank God, and praise God. Who cares whether that was Jackson's intention or not. There are times when the artist's intention is entirely secondary to the actual effect. There was beauty, nobility, and passion in the film and for me the experience was transcendent. I think this especially remarkable as I did not expect so much after the second film. (I enjoyed the second film somewhat, but I was not transfixed by it.)
So, my word--depending on who you are and how you receive these things, this can be a magnificent, wonderful, stirring, and perhaps even life-changing film. I thank God for such a beautiful Christmas gift this year.