“The Promise”- a too familiar world

In the early 1900s, an estimated 1.5 million Armenians lived within the borders of the dying Ottoman Empire, led by what is now modern Turkey. The Ottomans had annexed a large portion of Armenia as far back as 1555 but allowed the people to generally govern themselves, until political entanglements within the empire and European complexities and alliances of World War I led to untold tragedy.In 1915, when the Ottomans perceived that the ethnic Armenians within their borders supported the … [Read More...]

“Gifted” a look at genius and a selfish grandmother

Six-year-old Mary Adler (Mckenna Grace) doesn’t want to go to school, but her uncle, Frank (Chris Evans), insists. Their neighbor Roberta (Octavia Spencer) scolds Frank when he returns from taking his niece to school. She’s afraid that something might go wrong for Mary, who has never gone to school before. The reason is that Mary is a prodigy in mathematics, as was her mother, who committed suicide when her daughter was only a baby.In class, Mary cannot resist showing how impatient she is at … [Read More...]

‘The Great War’ is a master class on US involvement in World War I

Writer-director Stephen Ives' three-part, six-hour documentary on how President Woodrow Wilson got the United States into the war "for which he was born" is indeed a master class on World War I history and how it paved the way for America today.Narrated by Oliver Platt and other notable voices, … [Read More...]

‘Smurfs: The Lost Village’ asks: What’s in a name?

Note: there are spoilers but I am assuming you are older than seven if you are reading this and won't mind or care. Besides if I can't write about the whole movie this would be a really, really short review.If the spoilers really matter to you, please stop reading now.Everything is going … [Read More...]

‘Newtown’ – a grief and despair so massive

From Margaret Lyons over at the NYTimes "Watching"‘Newtown’ When to watch: 9 p.m., on PBS (check local listings).Prepare to be emotionally ruined by this unfussy, devastating documentary about the Sandy Hook school shooting, in which Adam Lanza murdered 20 children and 6 adults after also mu … [Read More...]

‘The Zookeeper’s Wife’ – a true story of compassion and courage

This latest film from director Niki Caro (Whalerider) is perhaps one of the most unknown historical dramas that took place during World War II and forms part of the canon of Holocaust films.The film opens not long before Germany invaded Poland on September 1, 1939. Antonina (Jessica Chastain) … [Read More...]

Grace and Mercy in “Silence”

"Silence" is a recent film adaptation by Martin Scorsese of Japanese author Shusaku Endo's 1966 novel. The film tells the story of two young Portuguese Jesuit priests who travel to Japan in the 17th century to find their mentor, Fr. Ferreira (Liam Neeson) who is reported to have apostatized. It is a … [Read More...]

“The Zookeeper’s Wife” and our call to provide sanctuary

 The following is a guest post asking us to reflect on the current refugee situation, indeed crisis, and our response as believers in view of the release of "The Zookeeper's Wife" film on March 31, 2017. Our Call to Provide SanctuaryCo-authored by:Lori Margaret, … [Read More...]

‘Cries from Syria’: J’accuse! Airs tonight 3/13/17 HBO

The opening scene of Cries from Syria is of a two-year old baby laying dead on the sea shore, the rippled waves washing over him, because the boat bringing him to Europe capsized. This new HBO Documentary film (it premiered at Sundance in January) by Oscar and Emmy nominated director Evgeny … [Read More...]

‘The Zookeeper’s Wife’ – true story coming soon

I'll be seeing the film next week; this information is from the publicist. The couple saved at least 300 Jews from death during World War II. Here's a description of the book from Wikipedia: The Zookeeper's Wife THE ZOOKEEPER’S WIFE - Synopsis In 1939 Poland, Antonina Żabińska (portrayed by two- … [Read More...]