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Matthews: Christian Bale showed us what grace looks like

Let me finish tonight with this.For every tragedy, someone, or a lot of people, do something — sometimes out of nowhere that simply lifts your heart.

Let me finish tonight with this.

For every tragedy, someone, or a lot of people, do something — sometimes out of nowhere that simply lifts your heart.    

Say what you will, I am so impressed that Christian Bale, the star of the Batman movies, visited Aurora, Colorado the other day to spend a good deal of time with the victims. He didn't come in with an entourage or with flacks fussing about. He arrived with his wife, showing that he cared for the feelings and hurt of the people of Aurora, and not only them, but the people of this country who honestly without a thought to politics, have opened their hearts to this terrible event and the pain that lasts.           

"Words cannot express the horror that I feel. I cannot begin to truly understand the pain and grief of the victims and their loved ones," he put out word when hearing of the horror last week, "but my heart goes out to them." 

But then he did the thing that always matters most — for a wedding, a funeral, a christening: he showed up. As another movie figure once said, that's what separates the people who care from those who have other priorities.  He showed up.

It may not be all that logical to an alien from another planet, that is, the importance of a movie actor coming through at a time like this. But we on this earth know it. It's the home run hitter who shows up at the hospital for his young fan. It's the friend who shows up for your mom's funeral.    

The movie The Dark Knight Rises will always be associated with the terror that occurred at its showing in Aurora. We will also remember that the lead player in that movie showed up to show his real feelings for the victims of what happened in the dark of that night, but also to show in the bright light of day the regard he, a professional, pays to the people who go to their local theater to see him.

There are words to describe such gestures. My favored one here is "grace." Christian Bale, in Aurora, Colorado, after a horror to which he was associated but bears no blame, showed us what grace looks like.