I joined the Boxing Day crowd today and caught The Golden Compass at the cinema. It was great. Loved it. I had read the books years ago and enjoyed them then too.
It had all the classic themes that makes for a good story. One that can be enjoyed on many levels. Good vs evil. Freedom vs oppression. What resonated most with me was how our individual choices make us who we are. And even the most smallest of us has the power to choose.
It is thus particularly ironic that certain Christian groups have denounced the film, as they did the Harry Potter series. It is telling that these Christian groups chose to identify with the bad guys in the film, the Magisterium, which is a government-like body that is trying to eradicate free will in order to gain complete dominance. If they do not somehow feel that the portrayal of the Magisterium touches on some truth within themselves, why else would they take offence?