U2′s New (Completely Unnecessary) Compilation

U218, which arrives in stores Nov. 21, is a waste of time for anybody who already has the best-of collections that they released a few years ago.There's nothing in these 15 singles that you don't already know by heart, except...the recent U2/Green Day collaboration-cover of "The Saints are Coming," which does indeed rock, and... "Windows in the Sky," which is as jubilant and celebratory as "Beautiful Day," and which U2-friendly churches are more than likely to integrate in their … [Read more...]

Two "Hobbit" Movies?

Chattaway has the scoop. … [Read more...]

First Things Reviews “Babel”

At First Things, Anthony Sacramone has turned in an insightful review of Babel... and what it could have been. … [Read more...]

Blast From the Past: 1988 and “The Indescribable Wow”

I was delighted to discover a brand new review of one of my all-time favorite albums this morning. And it's a thoughtful one, too.Remember The Indescribable Wow? … [Read more...]

Warning: There’s “Pushing and Shoving” in “The Nativity Story”

A prominent Christian media personality has disregarded the professional standard of waiting until opening day to publish a review of The Nativity Story, and he offers some rather, um, arresting observations: Having spent some time in Israel researching other movies, I can attest to the authenticity of even the smallest details of life in Israel in the first century. The crucifixions, the agriculture, the ephods, everything is done exquisitely.... I can hardly wait. There's nothing I love more … [Read more...]

“Stranger Than Fiction”: Better Than Expected

Has anyone else ever noticed how Will Ferrell looks a lot like Ron Perlman sometimes?I pretty much agree with Peter T. Chattaway's review of Stranger Than Fiction.It's worth seeing for good performances, a clever and whimsical script, attractive and creative cinematography, and some scenes that are memorably poignant.Oh, yeah... and there's a supporting actor whose small role will astonish viewers who recognize him. When I turned and whispered his name to my friend, the guy almost … [Read more...]

Today’s Shuffle: What do these songs mean to you?

Well, now that I've transferred my entire rock/pop/folk/country library to my iPod, I'm enjoying the circus show better-known as "Shuffle Songs."The machine tends to deliver a rather bumpy road of randomly selected tracks from the 6,600 songs I've loaded up. … [Read more...]

Have you heard? Sufjan Stevens has a new release.

Someone asked me why I hadn't blogged yet about the new Sufjan Stevens release, and my answer is, um, well, I've been too busy listening to it.In fact, Sufjan doesn't just have one new volume of material... no, he has FIVE new volumes of material. And they're all Christmas albums.They're new, that is, to those who haven't been tuning in through his fan club over the last few years. I've been listening to the first three volumes for a while now. But at last, they're packaged up with some … [Read more...]

The Secret Location of the Big Release Party…

Anybody recognize this place?This is where the big book release party for Through a Screen Darkly will be held. … [Read more...]

Darren Aronofsky Goes Through a Screen Darkly

What does Darren Aronofsky, director of Pi, Requiem for a Dream, and The Fountain think of Through a Screen Darkly?After reading the first several chapters, he says: … [Read more...]