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FILM REVIEW: Video Games: The Movie

Game over, man! Game over!

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My first console was the Nintendo Entertainment System, summer of ’89 (cue Bryan Adams, “Those were the best days of my life”). To a kid, the acquiring of an NES rivaled the birth of a sibling. I remember clearly the moment the Super Mario Bros. title screen graced the living room TV, initiating me into game fandom. […]

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The Obsessive Movie Watcher’s Home Theatre: THE BIRTH OF A NATION

A TALES OF TRUE TERROR! Special

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COURTING CONTROVERSY In tandem with Spiritual Sundays, I will be running a complementary series on Tuesdays addressing some of the most divisive films in cinematic history. A few years back I returned to South Korea after an abbreviated return to the US just in time to not vote in the 2008 elections, and just in […]

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The Obsessive Movie Watcher’s Home Theatre: THE 400 BLOWS

A SPIRITUAL SUNDAYS Special

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Hello there! (And if you happen to recognize that as Obi-Wan Kenobi’s greeting to R2-D2 in Stars Wars: Episode WhateverTheHeck, I can safely say we’re on the same page, friend… Or, um, ‘frame’, as it were.) The accompanying two photos are of Yours Truly, aged one week and 3 years old, respectively. The one on the […]

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Film Review: LAND HO!

Retirees Go To Iceland. And That's About It.

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In the sub-sub genre of old guys traveling to Iceland, I suppose Land Ho! is okay at best. Casually referencing Howard Hawks’ Rio Bravo in early dialogue, Land Ho! outs itself as a “hangout” travelog for the seasoned set. (Director and human film encyclopedia Quentin Tarantino calls Rio Bravo the best “hangout” movie ever made […]

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Film Review: Calvary

The Passion of Father James

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Calvary opens with a jolt. In a tightly framed shot inside a confessional booth, Father James (Brendan Gleeson) hears, in graphic detail, that one of his parishioners was sexually abused by a priest as a child. It’s a bold start to a film that is part suspense thriller, part detective story, part black comedy. But […]

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Film Review: Rich Hill

Giving poverty a boyish face

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It’s easy, from the outside of poverty, to see it as simply a matter of cash flow. People in the middle class (like myself) look at those enmeshed in poverty and think a dollar amount would fix what’s broken. Or we imagine what we would do, if we were poor and struggling: we glibly talk […]

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Remembering Lauren Bacall

Celebrating Eight Decades of Self-Assured Glamour and Presence

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Jim Tudor:  Far be it from me to declare who’s a “real woman” and who isn’t, but few would challenge Lauren Bacall on the title.  Celebrity came quick, as she started her career with a bang – or rather a whistle (“you put your lips together and …blow”) in 1946′s To Have and Have Not.  […]

SON OF GOD, a biblical adaptation from early 2014.

The Problem with Christian Films

A Look at What's Ailing Faith-Based Movies

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    This past year has been the year of the Christian film. We have seen an explosion of Christian-themed and Christian-produced films, each seemingly more financially successful than the last. In the words of Scott Mendelson, box office analyst for Forbes.com, “I think we can safely say that 2014 is the year that Christian-themed […]

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Film Review: The Giver

The Giver's gift is....boredom.

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At some point we have to be honest with ourselves.  There are simply too many teen dystopian/fantasy films out there.  Between The Hunger Games, Divergent, The Mortal Instruments, Vampire Academy, Ender’s Game, The Host, etc., there has to be a breaking point.  That breaking point has now been reached with the latest offering called The Giver. […]