Presbyterian Reflections on the Death of Prince

Strange things happen at summer camp. Even Christian summer camp. Away from parents, out in the woods, under the supervision of mildly responsible college students. It was at my Christian summer camp in 1985 that I first heard the music of Prince.There in the meadow shelter at Camp Wildwood, the picnic tables had been pushed aside for the talent show. Some of the performers were doing lip-sync. (When did this even become an art form? With the invention of more portable music on cassette? … [Read more...]

THE BIRTH OF A NATION Trailer

Fox Searchlight has just released the first trailer for The Birth of a Nation, the standout film at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and what is sure to be one of the most important films of the year. The Birth of a Nation releases in theaters on Oct. 7th. You can view the trailer and read more about the film after the jump. … [Read more...]

At SXSW: ACCIDENTAL COURTESY

Perhaps one of the more disturbing trends of advances in media technology is that while social media has the power to bring us together, we are using it in ways that drive us further apart. We retreat to the safety of our camps, never having to experience the face-to-face interactions with those folks that disagree with us or even hate us. Accidental Courtesy: Darryl Davis, Race, & America is a new documentary about a musician turned social activist that dares to meet his enemies … [Read more...]

At SXSW: A STRAY

Last year, a film used dogs to make a political, cultural, and religious statements about immigrants in Europe. White God received critical acclaim, but a limited theatrical release (you can now streat it on Netflix). This year, another indie film out of Minnesota sends an equally strong message through the story of one man's bond with a stray dog. Here's hoping for easy access to Musa Syeed's film, A Stray, because it's one that many people need to see. … [Read more...]

At SXSW: THE LIBERATORS

If you've seen The Monuments Men, then you're somewhat familiar with The Liberators, the new doc that premieres at SXSW about stolen religious art from WWII that reappeared in Whitewright, TX. … [Read more...]

Hollywood Schizophrenia

After the jump, check out my contribution to the Patheos Public Square and the conversation around Hollywood and social justice. … [Read more...]

Ranking Sundance 2016

Below, I rank the films I saw at Sundance last week, separated by features and docs, with links to full reviews where available. I missed out on some much-talked about films like Manchester by the Sea and Swiss Army Man and only saw three docs. The top three films really feel like they're tied for first place, and the top six are all must-sees. … [Read more...]

A Christian Renounces His Right to Bear Arms

The latest mass shooting in San Bernadino has given me a feeling of despair I have not experienced from the evening news in some time. Like many of you, I am absolutely sick at the continuing cycle of gun violence in this country, and the seeming lack of ability for our political leaders to do anything about it.I’ve had numerous arguments with friends and relatives over social media this past week. This has not made me feel any better. Living and teaching in the Deep South has convinced me t … [Read more...]


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