Friday, December 22, 2006

Amazing Grace

A few weeks ago I blogged about this movie, which is based on the life of William Wilberforce. It will hit theaters in February. You can read my previous post here. Below is the link to the trailer for this movie. It looks fantastic. I am really looking forward to seeing it.

(HT: JTaylor)

1 comment:

brian b. said...

Yeah, this looks good, and I'm looking forward to seeing it, too.

It will be interesting to see how the movie portrays the use of the tune that nearly everyone knows for the hymn. John Newton wrote the words to "Amazing Grace," but not the tune. He died in 1807 in England, and the now-familiar tune didn't appear in print until 1829, and that was in America, in a shape-note publication. It's most likely that Newton never heard his words to the tune we all know. I visited the movie website, and if you click on "the song" (or something like that), a timeline pops up with some good info from the book "Amazing Grace: The story of America's most beloved song" by Steve Turner.

Myths and speculation often arise around cherished songs. One that I've encountered about the "Amazing Grace" tune is that it was African in origin. Another is that it was originally a bagpipe tune (and the bagpipe connection was in the trailer, even). Either story is possible, but just speculation, and no real scholars of hymnody present either of them as fact, though you might read them in books or hear them as "fact" now and then.