A Scorsese Q & A

Over the weekend, I had the rare opportunity to listen to--and briefly meet--one of my favorite directors (and one that I consider the greatest of all time), Martin Scorsese. We screened his latest film, Silence, for the Fuller Seminary community. After the jump, you can read some of the highlights from Scorsese's Q & A with Kutter Callaway, assistant professor of theology and culture at Fuller, and Mako Fujimura, director of the Brehm Center at Fuller. … [Read more...]

Thoughts on ‘Rogue One’: the Maccabees of the Star Wars Canon

 If the box office receipts are to be believed, you've already seen Rogue One: a Star Wars Story. So rather than a full review, I thought I'd offer a few thoughts on this, the intertestamental literature of the Star Wars saga:  This is the most geek-tastic Star Wars film ever: "THRILL as Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor sift through the structural engineering files of the Galactic Empire! GASP as they try to upload the Death Star plans to a Rebel starship. Will there be … [Read more...]

‘Silence’: A PopTheology Conversation

Martin Scorcese's monumental Silence is now playing in select theaters and is slated for wide release on January 13th. The story of Jesuit missionaries in 17th century Japan is based on the novel by Japanese Catholic convert Shusaku Endo. It explores the nature of faith and doubt in the most impossible of circumstances--when profession of belief can lead to torture and death. But as the film plays out the conflict between the colonial impulses of Europe, which use Christian conversion as a tool, … [Read more...]

Fantastic Beasts: Carl Jung’s Lawyer Called and He Wants a Writing Credit

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the reboot of the Harry Potter series, takes viewers even further afield into the wizarding world--to the streets of Jazz Age New York.Based on a thin novelty book Rowling published in 2001, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander was supposed to be Harry Potter's first textbook for Care of Magical Creatures class.For a summary review of the film, read here. The following are some thoughts on my viewing of the film.Newt … [Read more...]

#KillerSerials: AMANDA KNOX

Tony Jones and Ryan Parker discuss the new Netflix documentary, Amanda Knox, and what it says about unjust legal systems, amoral media outlets, and the public's obsession with crime stories. Take a listen after the jump. … [Read more...]

At AFI FEST: THE NET

The South Korean film, The Handmaiden, has gotten glowing reviews this year, but it’s another, more modest film, Kim Ki-Duk’s The Net, that might be the year’s best cinematic export. While it centers on the tensions between North and South Korea, this border story also serves as an allegory for all of the divisions in our world today.  … [Read more...]

At AFI FEST: LIVE CARGO

Logan Sandler's debut feature, Live Cargo echoes the first (and best part) of Lars von Trier's Antichrist. Shot in black and white, both films deal, in large part, with a couple losing a child and their (in)ability to connect through that grief. After the jump, read on for more on Live Cargo as well as a brief interview with Sandler. … [Read more...]

At AFI: GODLESS & KILL ME, PLEASE

Two films playing at AFI Fest this week, from as diverse locations as Bulgaria and Brazil, take violence far more seriously than many of their counterparts and reveal both religion's ability to heal us of it and religious leader's use of violence to manipulate the faithful.  … [Read more...]