The Christian Message of David Fincher’s Gone Girl . . . (Not Really)

Gone Girl

It happens all the time. I get an email from an angry reader who says, "Why are you wasting time talking about the technical aspects of a movie? What really matters is the message!" … [Read more...]

The Song “Shares the Weaknesses of Most Faith-Based Films”

The Song

I've received two emails this week asking for my opinion of The Song. This is what I can offer... … [Read more...]

Looking Closer at The Hundred-Foot Journey

hundred foot journey

As I joined the line to buy tickets for a mid-afternoon matinee showing of Guardians of the Galaxy, I had a rare and unsettling experience. A large crowd had assembled at the ticket counter, and I quickly discovered that these moviegoers had come for the opening-day matinee of a movie that I did not know existed.Somehow, I had failed to notice any promotional effort at all for Lasse Haalstrom's The Hundred Foot Journey. … [Read more...]

This Post Contains R-Rated Subject Matter: Viewer Discretion is Advised.

R rating

Watching the trailers before Chef on Friday night, I was reminded by the smirking comments of viewers around me that the "This Motion Picture is Rated..." screen before a preview does as much, if not more, to intrigue viewers about the violence, language, or nudity included in the film than it does to dissuade anybody, or to warn parents about the content of the film.It's been obvious for decades in the way the announcer on television says "Viewer discretion advised!", his sinister tone … [Read more...]

Is Chef the Greatest Movie Ever Made About Sandwich-Making?

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 6.04.23 PM

What are the greatest movie moments that involve sandwiches? … [Read more...]

In Memory of My Friend, My Boss, My Mentor: Jennifer Gilnett

Demaray Tower

The last 13 days have been a harrowing experience of heartbreak and loss for me and many who are close to me. I haven't said anything about it here at Looking Closer, but I think the time has come. … [Read more...]

Have You Ever Changed Your Mind About a Movie? (or How I Got “Dead Poets Society” Wrong)

dead poets poster

Alissa Wilkinson, chief film critic for Christianity Today, asked me if I've ever changed my mind about a movie... and would I write about that? So I'm asking you. What's a movie you loved the first time, or hated the first time, and then experienced a total change of mind? I chose to write about Dead Poet's Society. He's how I began my response to Alissa... … [Read more...]

Up for a Celebrity Impressions Road Trip?

the trip 2

September has been a difficult month for me for a variety of reasons. I've felt the urge, more than once, to just get in the car and start driving. Busy days make me crave open spaces. Noise makes me crave quiet. And stress makes me want that feeling of putting distance between me and the source of stress — I love the hum of the freeway streaming beneath my tires.A road trip hasn't really been possible. So I thought I'd try the next-best thing — road movies. Did that scratch the itch? Well, y … [Read more...]

U2′s Songs of Innocence: Not Bad for Four Guys in Their Mid-50s!

u2 TIME cover 87 crop

Okay, for the one reader out there who doesn't know: You can download the new U2 album for free right now on iTunes.In something just short of a resurrection, U2 is back and — to my surprise and delight — they sound reinvigorated, inspired, and amazing.Thanks, my brothers.This was a generous surprise, a big blast of sunshine and joy during a season of shadow and heartbreak.And after one listen, I'm a happier U2 record-listener than I've been since March 4, 1997.... And appare … [Read more...]

She’s Growing Up So Fast! Auralia’s Colors is 7 Years Old


My first novel Auralia's Colors — currently on sale at Amazon for a bargain price — is 7 years old today!She's growing up so fast.  … [Read more...]