“Reduced to the level of a cheap feature film”?

I’m still making my way through P.D. James’s The Children of Men, and last night I came across this lovely bit at the end of Chapter 21, when Julian, her husband Rolf, and their associates have finally revealed her miraculous pregnancy to Theo:Julian said: “Please come with us, Theo. Please help us.”Rolf said impatiently: “He has no choice. He knows too much. We can’t let him go free now.”Theo looked at Julian. He wanted to ask, “Is this the man… Read more

“Can H’wood make friends with evangelicals?”

That’s the headline on this piece by Variety writer Brian Lowry, which begins thusly:ALEXANDRA PELOSI’S latest HBO documentary, “Friends of God,” will doubtless garner some attention for her fortuitously timed interview with Pastor Ted Haggard, the disgraced head of the National Assn. of Evangelicals. Interviewed prior to allegations that he purchased illicit drugs and had sex with a male prostitute, Haggard boasts about evangelicals’ rollicking sex lives and ironically contemplates the harm done when their leaders experience moral lapses.Yet another… Read more

Christian PR firms to studios: We’re all cattle!

Here’s an extra paragraph which rubbed me the wrong way, from that Los Angeles Times story I just referenced:”If they want to market to the Christian community, they have to understand the value of prescreening to leaders,” said Michael Catt, senior pastor at Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Ga. “The church leaders control what is promoted from the pulpit.”I’m quite happy to go to a church where the gospel, and not some movie, is promoted during the homilies, thank you… Read more

Did The Nativity Story kill the biblical epic?

The Los Angeles Times posts its own story on the disappointing box-office performance of The Nativity Story ($43.5 million worldwide so far), and the possible consequences thereof:New Line spent about $65 million making and marketing “The Nativity Story” and probably will make its money back on home video.But Wyck Godfrey, producer of “The Nativity Story,” fears that his movie’s slow momentum at the box office will discourage others from making large-budget, overtly Christian entertainment.”We were relieved by how it held… Read more

Canadian box-office stats — December 31

Here are the figures for the past weekend, arranged from those that owe the highest percentage of their take to the Canadian box office to those that owe the lowest.Casino Royale — CDN $22,385,938 — N.AM $153,515,000 — 14.6%Blood Diamond — CDN $4,768,600 — N.AM $35,716,000 — 13.3%The Holiday — CDN $6,001,196 — N.AM $50,011,000 — 12.0%Rocky Balboa — CDN $4,347,450 — N.AM $48,262,000 — 9.0%The Good Shepherd — CDN $2,724,912 — N.AM $35,045,000 — 7.8%Eragon — CDN $4,349,612 –… Read more

Will Pixar’s downward trend continue?

Cars was an under-performer, by Pixar standards; it grossed less than any of their films since A Bug’s Life (1998). Will their next film, Ratatouille — which comes out in six months — continue the downward trend? Jim Hill explains why Disney is concerned. Read more

Indiana Jones IV — a few more details

The Hollywood Reporter adds a few new details about Indiana Jones IV: Shooting is set to begin in June 2007, the film will come out in May 2008, and the as-yet-untitled screenplay is by David Koepp, whose credits include the first Spider-Man (2002), the first Mission: Impossible (1996), the first two Jurassic Park movies (1993-1997) and Spielberg’s War of the Worlds (2005).UPDATE: And now Variety magazine chimes in. Read more

2007 Film Journal

As per my 2006 Journal, videos and DVDs are in italics. Films I saw for the first time have an asterisk (*) next to them. Not counting extras and promo items.Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | DecJan 1 — The Omen [1976; w/ second audio commentary]Jan 2 — The Exorcist [2000 version; w/ audio commentary]Jan 2 — The Omen [2006; w/ audio commentary]Jan 3… Read more

Is Indiana Jones IV a go, now? Whatever.

Apparently while I was out with the wife and kids last night, checking out the Bright Nights display at Stanley Park, the blogosphere exploded with the news that George Lucas declared yesterday — without giving away any story details, natch — that Indiana Jones IV will begin shooting next year, for release in 2008.Whatever. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) is a classic for all time, of course, but neither of the sequels produced so far is anything to write… Read more

BC Christian News — January 2007

The newest issue of BC Christian News is now online, and with it, my film column, which looks mainly at Children of Men and Apocalypto, but also touches on the DVD releases of The Passion of the Christ and World Trade Center. The paper also includes a print version of my interview with Erin Gruwell, who is the subject of the upcoming movie Freedom Writers, which stars Hilary Swank; I may post a longer version here in a few days.JAN… Read more

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