Pastor Calls On Parents to Exercise Media Discernment After Screening Pixar’s TURNING RED

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Pastor Calls On Parents to Exercise Media Discernment After Screening Pixar’s TURNING RED

By Movieguide® Staff

Pastor Mike Signorelli, the senior pastor of V1 Church in New York City, recently urged parents to skip Disney Pixar’s newest animated feature, TURNING RED. 

The pastor released a video on social media about media discernment and the parents’ role in what their children learn from movies, TV, and other forms of media. 

“I believe that every parent — not just a pastor, but a parent — has a mandate to actually screen material,” Signorelli told Faithwire in an interview. “Because every single device you have in your home is a portal, either a window into the things of God or, unfortunately, things that I believe are demonic.”

Signorelli pointed out that TURNING RED contains ancestral communication within the first 8 minutes of the movie, a practice addressed in the Bible. 

“We know in Hebrews 9:27, it’s appointed once to live and then to die and we face judgment, and it’s strictly forbidden, in the Christian context, to communicate with the dead,” Signorelli said. “And so, even within the first eight minutes, you have chanting, communication with ancestors, and immediately a red flag should start to go off.”

However, Signorelli said that he is not after the destruction of Disney but rather to help Christians approach a media-controlled world with a strong biblical worldview. 

“I think what happens is we’re so desensitized that, over time, things that used to be offensive to Christians, unfortunately, I think that we’ve become accepting of them,” he said. “And we ignore it, and that’s really why I felt a burden to put the word out about this movie.”


Movieguide®’s review of TURNING RED reads

TURNING RED is an animated Pixar comedy on Disney+. Set in 2002, the story is about Mei, a precocious, independent 13-year-old girl living in Toronto, Canada. Mei chafes under the watchful eye of her strict Chinese mother. Mei asks her mother if she can attend a popular boy band’s concert in Toronto with her four friends, but her mother says no. The next morning, Mei magically transforms into a large red panda, a curse that runs in her mother’s family. Mei decides to use the red panda to secretly earn the money to go to the concert, against her mother’s wishes.

TURNING RED has a lively, fun plot and colorful animation. It also has a big finish, strong characters and some pro-family themes. However, the movie is marred by false theology, including references to ancestor worship, Zen Buddhism, magical transformations, and polytheism. Despite the conflict between Mei and her mother, the resolution of that conflict isn’t a rejection of family but ultimately an affirmation of the family ties that bind families together. Nevertheless, MOVIEGUIDE advises extreme caution for the false theology in TURNING RED.

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