Warning – Spoiler Alerts!
The Greatest Showman is a great piece of entertainment that’s worth watching without anything much to think or worry about. It got mixed reviews but the movie has rightly defied the politically correct art critics to be one of the most popular movies of 2017-2018.
The key points in this movie are about difference, being unique, working together, community, family, unity and about kindness and love. The world around us has totally hijacked the word diversity to mean ‘do whatever you want’.
The Greatest Showman shows the power and meaning of genuine diversity – which is about people being different but being valuable and deserving of love. The physical side of people doesn’t make the complete person but the heart inside that person does.
Having and Fighting For The Dream(s)
The first dream we see Barnum have is when he meets Charity, while working at her arrogant father’s house. The two develop a close friendship that blossoms over the years and turns into marriage and two girls. Again, Barnum and Charity have to fight for this. But the end result is worth it.
Barnum has a dream and sees himself running a circus. Over time this is what he fights for and sees happen. But it comes with a battle and on-going battles to overcome discrimination and hard times.
Stay Focused and Fighting Temptation
We also see the need not to get distracted and lose sight of who we are. This goes in line with being faithful to our mate.
Barnum gets distracted over time when he meets Jenny Lind, a Swedish singer. He then starts to turn his back on his old friends. But eventually this all comes crashing down, as does his finances and apparently his marriage, despite refusing the advances of Lind.
Inter-Racial Relationships and Fighting For Love
Meanwhile back at the show, Barnum had met a playwright called Carlyle who comes along, starts to help out and who falls for an African American at the show called Anne Wheeler.
This relationship is a fight, even with Carlyle’s parents who turn up their noses. But love wins. Later when there is a fire at the circus, Carlyle thinks Wheeler is trapped inside (not knowing she is safe) so rushes in to save her. Barnum, fresh from learning his lesson about pride, rushes in to rescue Carlyle. Carlyle is injured but his act of love draws him and Anne together.
Pride (something God hates), Fall (inevitably) and Restoration
It is the story about pride comes before a fall. But there is genuine redemption and transformation.
The pride of Barnum leads to his fall. He loses sight of his calling, his friends and his family. But he goes and makes amends by seeking out his daughters and wife, being forgiven and then seeing restoration back to the family he has loved and joyfully involved in his life.
We see about handing over the reigns to the next generation. When the circus building is burned down, Barnum has no money. But Carlyle steps in and they end up co-owning the circus, Towards the end of the movie, during a performance, Barnum hands over the circus leading to Carlyle and goes off to meet his wife and daughters and watch his daughter’s ballet performance. This is where his heart is.
Life Is More Than ‘Stuff’
Finally, we see how this life is about more than having stuff and ‘living the dream’ but is about true family and real love and about helping others become all they can be.