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Millions

September 15, 2015

MsComedy in which two young brothers acquire a fortune in Sterling on the eve of Britain’s conversion to the Euro. Damian, who regularly communes with the saints, believes he should use it to bring hope to the poor.

tells the story of 9-year-old Damian, a Catholic school boy, whose family moves to the suburbs of Widnes after the death of his mother. Soon after the move, Damian’s “hermitage” in a cardboard box by the train tracks is disturbed by a bag of money flung from a passing train. Damian immediately shows the money to his brother, Anthony, and the two begin thinking of what to do with it. Anthony wants the money all to himself. Damian, kind-hearted and religious, had recently overheard three Latter-day Saint missionaries lecture other members of the community on building foundations of rock rather than foundations of sand, an old Christian principle which dictates that self-worth should be based on the teachings of Christ rather than any other object of worship such as Money/Mammon or Power. The lecture inspires Damian, who looks for ways to give his share of the money to the poor; at one point he even stuffs a bundle of cash through the missionaries’ letter box, having heard about their modest lifestyle and deciding that they too must be poor.

Millions acts as a parable of how we may choose to react to imperfect situations not of our own direct making. One could argue that we in the West are beneficiaries of a world where through dishonesty (morally if not legally) there has been misappropriation of other people’s resources. Even returning a small amount of these to those deprived of their fair share can effect change. It could, for instance, create a well that prevents disease. It can be an instance of when ordinary life takes on some of the qualities of eternity.

Millions acts as a parable of how we may choose to react to imperfect situations not of our own direct making. One could argue that we in the West are beneficiaries of a world where through dishonesty (morally if not legally) there has been misappropriation of other people’s resources. Even returning a small amount of these to those deprived of their fair share can effect change. It could, for instance, create a well that prevents disease. It can be an instance of when ordinary life takes on some of the qualities of eternity.

Damian wants to help the poor with the money which he believes God has given him to redistribute

The ethics of honesty – Damian is in danger of being so heavenly-minded he is no earthly good. He has to learn what exactly being honest means – both its costliness but also its practicalities.

Eternal life – This is strongly featured as a quality of living life here and now that speaks of eternal realties.

The communion of saints – The saints are not remote figures. They number among the little boy’s friends. He is not surprised to have their advice and support.

Instead of making cast and crew T-shirts, production donated the money to Water Aid, to build a well in Africa (like the family did in the film).

[first lines] Damian Cunningham: [voiceover] The French have said au revoir to the franc, the Germans have said auf wiedersehen to the mark, and the Portuguese have said… whatever to their thing.
Damian Cunningham: God doesn’t rob banks!
Damian Cunningham: God doesn’t rob banks, all right? God does not rob banks.
Anthony: What did you bring a thousand pounds to school for? Can’t you see that’s suspicious?
Damian Cunningham: It’s not suspicious, it’s unusual.
 

Damian Cunningham: I thought it was from God… who else would have that kind of money?
[after realizing the trouble that Damian’s “gift” has caused] Anthony: [to Damian] You’re a loony, and you ought to be *locked up!*

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