SXSW Film: The First Half

It’s my first time to SXSW, so I quickly learned what a fool I was for planning on seeing so many films in one week, what with all the parties and meetings that emerge from those parties. On top of that, seeing each movie requires standing in line for at least an hour. As a result, I'm still seeing around two movies a day.  … [Read more...]

A Conversation with the Stars of Black Nativity

A couple of weeks ago, I attended my very first press junket, a typical Hollywood affair in which a bunch of journalists and bloggers are herded through luxury hotel rooms and suites to interview directors, producers, and actors affiliated with an upcoming film. The film of the hour was Black Nativity, which releases today. Lucky for me, the film stars none other than Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Tyrese Gibson, Mary J. Blige, Jennifer Hudson, and Jacob Lattimore. These larger-than-life stars … [Read more...]

“Catching Fire” premiere pays tribute to personal heroes

Pop Theology contributor Steve Sudeth attended Monday night's red carpet premier of the new Hunger Games film, Catching Fire. Read on for his review of the night. Check back later this week for our review of the film. … [Read more...]

A Millennial Mainline Resurgence Is Just Around the Corner!

An interesting article by reformist evangelical and author Rachel Held Evans has been making the rounds on blog posts and Facebook. Evans speaks about her experience as a consultant to evangelical churches that are wondering why Millennials are leaving organized religion.Evans rolls her eyes at churches that think they can win back Millennials with "hipper worship bands," "pastors in skinny jeans," and "an updated Web site that includes online giving."  A lot of her suggestions for churches … [Read more...]

The New Oldboy Trailer is Here!! The New Oldboy Trailer is Here!!

I don't know that I've ever been more excited to see an upcoming film for which I have such low expectations. Such is the case with Spike Lee's remake of Park Chan-wook's Oldboy, one of my favorite films of all time. It's one of the more disturbing revenge fantasies you're likely to see, and it will be virtually impossible for James Brolin to surpass Choi Min-sik's unforgettable performance. Nevertheless, I'm intrigued to see Lee et al's take on it and hope to be pleasantly surprised. Check out … [Read more...]

A Religious Pilgrimage…Of Sorts

We spent the long 4th of July weekend down in Santa Ana, CA, visiting friends. It was a great weekend with plenty of good food, drink, and baseball (I took in two games at the Big A). On Saturday, recovering from another rack of ribs, I decided to make a religious pilgrimage, of sorts, to the Crystal Cathedral and Trinity Broadcasting Network's headquarters. The two are outsized symbols of American religiosity and embody the best and worst of it. … [Read more...]

Bert and Ernie Are Gay—Get Over It

This week, the New Yorker came out with a cover that has already caused an uproar on the level of the of the Obama fist-bump cover in 2008. According to this illustration, Sesame Street characters and longtime companions Ernie and Bert have more than just a passing interest in the outcome of the DOMA case.The rumors about Ernie and Bert’s sexuality have been around since at least the early 80’s (and for gay people, probably since the inception of the show in 1969).As usual, however, we ha … [Read more...]

Christians Gone Wild!

Three recent examples of conservative Christians in the news: of course, these are “newsmaker” Christians—people who have their own publicists and media machines. They may or may not be reflective of Christians or evangelicals as a whole, but they are reflective of what passes for religious commentary on culture in the public square.Christians Gone Wild I: The “Bible”Mark Burnett, producer of quality television like Survivor and Sarah Palin’s Alaska has produced The Bible, which he descri … [Read more...]