Category: On Movies

Movie Review: Gone Girl
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Movie Review: Gone Girl

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I don’t know why this simple premise intrigued me when the best-selling book and now movie, Gone Girl first came out, but it did: A young married couple. The wife suddenly disappears. Was it murder? Did her husband do it? But alas, the film, for all its accolades, is a massive disappointment, and really, a […]

Movie Review: Men, Women and Children
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Movie Review: Men, Women and Children

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Do not see Men, Women and Children unless you are inured to today’s porn and sex and sex and porn everywhere. The language and visuals are graphic and explicit and involve teens (and remember, today’s sex is degraded), but after a few seconds of getting into it each time, the camera mercifully cuts away. But […]

Movie Review: The Good Lie
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Movie Review: The Good Lie

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I did not want to see The Good Lie. It was assigned to me by my boss at LifeTeen, Christina Mead (benign dictator). I thought: I already know all about the “Lost Boys of Sudan” (young men who were forced to be child soldiers when their parents were murdered during the civil war). Many sad, […]

Movie Review: The Song
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Movie Review: The Song

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The Song is a new Christian film inspired by “The Songs of Songs” (aka “The Song of Solomon”) in the Bible. It is one of those distinctly southern/country culture films, with the two main characters being Christians themselves. It’s a story of adultery. A story of career vs. vocation, and spouses who are physically separated […]

Separated At Birth: The Identical Explores Identity, Conflict, Mission
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Separated At Birth: The Identical Explores Identity, Conflict, Mission

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First, there’s the great music: The Identical, which has been showing in theaters across America, is replete with rock-and-roll music that is eerily reminiscent of the great Elvis Presley.  In fact, the legendary rock star Drexel Helmsley, one of the twin protagonists played by Blake Rayne, is a dead ringer for the ’50s icon; and if you’re […]

Christian Filmmaking: Let's Be Honest
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Christian Filmmaking: Let’s Be Honest

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Several noteworthy commentaries on the lack of quality Christian filmmaking in recent years are beginning to pose an awkward question for those of us who are both trying to be faithful Catholics and film aficionados. With a few bright spots since Mel Gibson’s Passion of the Christ like The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe […]

Dolphin Tale 2, A Heartwarming Tale
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Dolphin Tale 2, A Heartwarming Tale

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As theaters are drowning in action movies and superheroes, a different kind of hero has made a second cinematic splash. Dolphin Tale 2 is a heart-warming, family friendly, and entertaining flick, featuring the unlikely protagonist, Winter; a dolphin without her tail. In case you missed the first Dolphin Tale, this based-on-a-true story movie focused on […]

Inside the Dolphin Tale’s Second Splash
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Inside the Dolphin Tale’s Second Splash

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What does a dolphin without a tale, acclaimed writer/director/actor Charles Martin Smith, and a group of renowned stars like Harry Connick Jr. and Morgan Freeman mean for Hollywood? In the first Dolphin Tale movie, it meant a major $100 million, motion picture hit worldwide and now, it means a sequel Dolphin Tale 2. But more […]

Movie Review: The Giver
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Movie Review: The Giver

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The Giver is yet another young adult dystopian novel turned into a movie, but it actually preceded many of the others. This engaging, perfect-for-our-times narrative by Lois Lowry was published in 1993, and is required reading in many schools. There is controversy surrounding the content, but for the life of me, I can’t figure out […]

When the Game Stands Tall
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When the Game Stands Tall

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It’s not about winning or losing but about how you play the game. Those words are usually reserved for losing teams, but legendary football coach, Bob Ladouceur, who shattered the record for all American sports, taught his team to live them; win or lose. He took the Spartans of De La Salle High School in […]

Standing Tall
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Standing Tall

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Sports movies have a built-in source of drama. In every contest there are winners and losers, hard work and teamwork, the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. Yet such movies also can lapse into melodrama and cliché: slow-motion metaphors that elevate sports above other challenges of life. Yet the best sports movies fit […]

Movie Review: Calvary
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Movie Review: Calvary

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The new Irish film, Calvary, is a fierce expedition into the repercussions and present climate of post-clergy-sex-abuse-scandal Ireland. It’s an unblinking, fictitious story that’s an apt vehicle not so much to wonder “how?” and “what went so terribly wrong?” as it is to gauge people’s reactions. Calvary sports the simplest, boldest, shortest Act One I […]

Movie Review: Boyhood
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Movie Review: Boyhood

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Boyhood, the new movie written and directed by Richard Linklater (Waking Life, A Scanner Darkly, The Before… Trilogy with Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy) is a one-of-a-kind, “big idea” film. The lives of screen Mom, Dad, son and daughter are followed for twelve years. Literally twelve years, having been filmed for about a week each […]

Divergent Trilogy Tackles Genetic Engineering and Genetic Discrimination
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Divergent Trilogy Tackles Genetic Engineering and Genetic Discrimination

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Warning! Spoilers Ahead!! Divergent is the latest of the teen dystopian future trilogies to hit the big screen. I have read all three books, Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegiant. Is it not my favorite trilogy in this growing genre, but I know that teens everywhere love it. I do appreciate that Veronica Roth has tackled some […]

Movie Review: The Jewish Cardinal
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Movie Review: The Jewish Cardinal

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The 2013 film (now on DVD and Netflix) The Jewish Cardinal is the life of the Cardinal Archbishop of Paris, Aaron Jean-Marie Lustiger who died in 2007. May I say that this is the most tastefully, smartly irreverent life of a prelate ever on film? Jewish filmmaker, Ilan Duran Cohen, gets both Judaism and Catholicism […]

Let Us Make God in Our Image, After Our Likeness 'Cause It'd Be Awesome
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Let Us Make God in Our Image, After Our Likeness ‘Cause It’d Be Awesome

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This might hurt your brain, but stay with me friends. Imagine if he came the way we wanted him to? Imagine if Jesus answered the problem of evil with a punch rather than his paschal mystery? He would’ve kicked the devil’s butt. He would’ve been ripped, with muscles on top of his muscles. A combination […]

Movie Review: Maleficent
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Movie Review: Maleficent

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WARNING: LOADED WITH SPOILERS! Well, is Maleficent magnificent? Angelina Jolie is (of course), but the story? I don’t know. What?! I don’t have an opinionated opinion for once? No. It’s complicated. I am viewing “Maleficent” on its own, but also in the context of the more recent Disney princess stories. The times they are a-changin’. […]

Movie Review: Locke
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Movie Review: Locke

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Locke, starring Tom Hardy–and only Tom Hardy–is being dubbed “Hamlet of the Highway,” and it’s exactly that. The premise of this one-actor film is simple and brilliant. The execution is also brilliant. A husband/father/expert construction foreman strayed once and only once in his marriage and got a middle-aged woman pregnant in a drunken one-night stand […]

June 1-2: Triumph with Messenger of The Truth on PBS
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June 1-2: Triumph with Messenger of The Truth on PBS

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This Sunday, June 1, and Monday, June 2, a miracle of sorts takes place on mainstream TV as PBS affiliates broadcast a documentary about a heroic Catholic priest. Messenger of The Truth is about Blessed Father Jerzy Popieluszko, chaplain to the Solidarity labor union that nonviolently took down the communist regime in Poland. Some efforts to […]

The Porn Pandemic Shows Pornography's ‘Devastating Effects'
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The Porn Pandemic Shows Pornography’s ‘Devastating Effects’

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What do half-a-dozen major sex crimes in America have in common? According to a new documentary by Family Watch International (FWI), they often start with pornography. Launched at the first End Exploitation summit last week, which was primarily organized by Morality in Media, “The Porn Pandemic: The Devastating Effects on Children, Family and Society” features […]

Movie Review: Mom's Night Out
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Movie Review: Mom’s Night Out

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Just in time for Mother’s Day comes a genuinely fun and funny film about the crazy adventure that is parenting, specifically motherhood (with a serving of fatherhood on the side). If you’ve seen the snappy trailer, the movie does deliver on its promise, and there’s lots more LOLs where that came from. But…. Dear Southern […]

Movie Review: Heaven is for Real
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Movie Review: Heaven is for Real

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The movie Heaven Is for Real, based on the book by the same name, is the true story of four-year-old Colton Burpo who claims to have seen heaven. First off: Do not watch the trailer if you haven’t already! It’s a great trailer, but it gives away a bit too much. Second off: do see […]

Movie Review: God's Not Dead
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Movie Review: God’s Not Dead

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DISCLAIMER: Some Christians believe that any Christian film that is trying to do good and tell the truth should be praised and promoted, whether or not it displays excellence in filmmaking and theology/philosophy. I am not one of those Christians. You have been warned. Proceed with this knowledge. The new Christian film: God’s Not Dead […]

Five Reasons to See and Talk About Noah
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Five Reasons to See and Talk About Noah

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I confess. I did not go into the movie Noah with a tabula rasa. I first read the scathing review of popular blogger, Matt Walsh. Then, curiosity peaked, I watched Sr. Rose Pacatte’s review. She loved it. Confused, but also intrigued, I decided I would just have to see for myself. There have been a wide range of views in […]

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