Archives for December 2008

Registration for The Glen Workshop 2009 is open!

Come join the fun, the inspiration, the awe...Anne and I will be visiting the Glen Workshop for the fifth summer in a row. It's our favorite week of the year. We call it a "sneak preview of heaven."And just look at the list of intriguing special guests who will be teaching workshops... … [Read more...]

The Island (Ostrov) (2006)

This review was previously published as an installment of Jeffrey Overstreet's "Through a Screen Darkly" column at Christianity Today.-A certain hunger sets in after film critics have spent the summer chasing down all of the big-budget action movies and sophomoric comedies.This summer was no exception. We thrilled to the latest special effects (Iron Man), laughed at flashes of inspired audacity (Tropic Thunder), and threw out the trash (Space Chimps, Fly Me to the Moon, The House … [Read more...]

It Came Upon a Big Screen Clear: An examination of overlooked, underrated Christmas films

Here's the latest installment in the Through a Screen Darkly series at Christianity Today...It Came Upon a Big Screen ClearHoliday movies don't often depict the real Christmas story, but when they do, it's a light shining in the darkness. … [Read more...]

The Tale of Despereaux (2008)

This review of The Tale of Despereaux was originally published at Christianity Today.-Kate DiCamillo's book The Tale of Despereaux is an enchanting story about a mouse with the heart of a hero. Already considered a classic, this Newberry Award winner is a favorite of families and children's librarians everywhere.And now The Tale of Despereaux — or something vaguely resembling it — is a movie. Director Sam Fell is no stranger to rodents; he directed Dreamworks' Flushed Away. But where  … [Read more...]

And to all a good night.

A Christmas Carol by G.K. ChestertonThe Christ-child lay on Mary's lap, His hair was like a light. (O weary, weary were the world, But here is all aright.)The Christ-child lay on Mary's breast His hair was like a star. (O stern and cunning are the kings, But here the true hearts are.)The Christ-child lay on Mary's heart, His hair was like a fire. (O weary, weary is the world, But here the world's desire.)The Christ-child stood on Mary's knee, His hair was like a … [Read more...]

Dancer in the Dark (2000)

A review by Jeffrey Overstreet· Portraits of Suffering: Reflections on Dancer in the Dark and Breaking the Waves a review by Jeffrey Overstreet PARENTAL NOTE:  Caution. "Dancer in the Dark" is rated PG-13, but the intensity of the violence and the suffering of the central character should have earned it an R. "Breaking the Waves" has much strong language, sexual subject matter, and violence onscreen, and is rated R.   NEITHER FILM IS SUITABLE FOR YOUNG CHILDREN. HIGH-RISK HEROINES Dancer in the … [Read more...]

The Departed (2006)

You might be a cop. You might be an undercover agent. You might be a crime kingpin, or a sexy psychiatrist. No matter who you are, it's like the Bob Dylan song says... "You gotta serve somebody."In The Departed, Martin Scorsese's hyper-violent remake of the Honk Kong crime classic Infernal Affairs, everybody has secrets, agendas, and a willingness to pull the trigger. And underneath their carefully composed disguises, all of them are devoted to the service of somebody-either a criminal, a … [Read more...]

The Devil Came on Horseback (2007)

A review by Jeffrey Overstreet · Directed by Annie Sundberg and Ricki Stern Directors of photography - Jerry Risius, Phil Cox, Tim Hetherington, William Rexer II, Anne Sundberg and John Keith Wasson Editor - Joey Grossfield Music - Paul Brill Producer - Anne Sundberg, Ricki Stern, Gretchen Wallace, Jane Wells, Ira Lechner, and Eileen Haag and Cristina Ljungberg International Film Circuit. 85 minutes. This film is not rated. ·We've seen a lot of American heroes saunter across the big screen w … [Read more...]

Distant (2004)

A review by Jeffrey Overstreet, originally published in The Other Journal, April 2005.·Writer, producer, director, director of photography - Nuri Bilge Ceylan.Editor - Eyhan Ergursel and Nuri Bilge Ceylan.Art director - Erbu Ceylan.Released by New Yorker Films.110 minutes. Unrated. In Turkish, with English subtitles.STARRING: Muzaffer Ozdemir (Mahmut), Mehmet Emin Toprak (Yusef), Zuhal Gencer Erkaya (Nazan), Nazan Kirilmis (Lover), Feridun Koc (Janitor), Fatma Ceylan (Mother) and … [Read more...]

Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004)

Perhaps you think this photo is funny.And it is, in an "Oh, I feel sorry for that guy" kind of way.But would you think it was funny if the joke went on and on, at the expense of the fat girl? Would you think it was funny if that poor young man collapsed with her on top of him, so that his face became stuck in her crotch?If you think that's funny, then this, I'm sorry to say, is the movie for you.I'm convinced that the guys who made Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story are not the … [Read more...]