Fifteen performances from 2005 that made a difference.

I'm not ready to deliver a Top Ten Films of 2005 yet. There are several key candidates I'll be seeing for the first time in the next couple of weeks, so stay tuned. I'll publish the list on December 31st, when 2005 really is ending and the buzzer sounds. Then I'll publish a revised list sometime around the end of January when the last heavy hitters of 2005 have become available in Seattle. (All of these folks publishing their top tens... have they really seen all of the key players already? … [Read more...]

Specials: Amy Wellborn – Vigilant. Adam Walter – literate. Chewbacca – full of Christmas spirit. Teachout – thirsty for music.

Open Book, Amy Wellborn's blog, continues to be an essential stop on my daily tour, for her relentless vigilance. Here's one of the recent highlights, regarding mainstream media and faith.Other blog entries worth noting:Adam Walter discovers the new Mark Helprin Web site. I visited Adam last night at the fine bookseller where he works and packaged up a couple of gifts for my wife while we chatted. In spite of my love for the movie world, I greatly envy anyone who gets to spend all day in … [Read more...]

J. Robert Parks’ Top Ten Moviegoing Experiences of 2005

Looking Closer's frequent guest reviewer J. Robert Parks has just turned in his Top Ten Moviegoing Experiences of 2005, plus an alternate Top Ten Films of 2005 list. I've posted it at the Looking Closer movie page.Parks gets to see a much wider variety of films per year than I do, so I always find a lot in his list that helps guide my DVD-watching in the coming year. I think you will too. … [Read more...]

The CT Mailbag: Brokeback Mountain

What's sad is how far short of grace and tact some of these messages fall...What's even sadder is how predictable it was that this would happen... … [Read more...]

Books and Culture: The Top Ten Books of the Year

John Wilson shares the B&C picks...What's the best book YOU read this year? … [Read more...]

Steven Greydanus Finds a Fundamental Flaw in "Brokeback Mountain"

Many Christian filmgoers will condemn Brokeback Mountain because they will assume that it is evil due to its subject matter. That's the worst kind of reaction to it. It leads us to become reactionary and judgmental, and it prevents us from learning to be patient, to look closely, to discern.What I like about Steven D. Greydanus's review at Decent Films is that, even though he gives Brokeback Mountain a failing grade, at least he did the work of thinking through it and seeing it for what it … [Read more...]

Did Over the Rhine Put On a Good Christmas Show?

Did Over the Rhine put on a good Christmas show?Are you kidding? Of course they did.(Photos courtesy of Paul Armstrong at Wiseacre Design.) … [Read more...]

What’s Narnia about? Tilda Swinton tells us it’s "anti-religious."

Tilda Swinton tells Christians they're "welcome" to Narnia and what it means. And what does it mean?That good and evil should exist together in balance.That righteousness is a dangerous idea.That the White Witch isn't a threat to Narnia... she is Narnia.And that the story is about the children finding strength in themselves, not in God.Further, she's apparently unsure whether there is evil in the world. "The Christians are welcome," [Swinton] says, with composed irony. "As … [Read more...]

TIME’s Persons of the Year: Bono, Bill & Melinda Gates!

Excuse me, while I perform a one-man version of George Frederic Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus."The actual story is here. … [Read more...]

Narnia’s Big Day

Yes, you've seen the trailer. You've even seen the movie.But yesterday, YESTERDAY was the day we've all been waiting for.The Narnia Happy Meals are available at McDonalds.Please note the details regarding the toys included in the package: Rounding out the elaborate collection is Peter Pevensie and Aslan’s Army. Peter leads his troops with articulated arms and legs, and the prelude to battle diorama features a pop-up satyr, unicorn, and horse Peter can ride. I imagine it's difficult … [Read more...]


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