‘Flannery O’Connor: Faith Fired by Fiction’ my book review

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 “Flannery O’Connor: Fiction Fired by Faith”By Angela Alaimo O’DonnellLiturgical Press, 2015Paperback, 138 pages$12.95 My copy of “Flannery O’Connor: Fiction Fired by Faith” by Fordham University English professor Angela Alaimo O’Donnell arrived a few days ago and I just finished devouring it. It’s part of the “People of God” series published by Liturgical Press. After a read of the scholarly and analytical Introduction and Chapter One, the book takes flight … [Read more...]

‘Forbidden Films’ the hidden legacy of Nazi films

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  This documentary from Germany explores the dilemma of censorship about a cache of about 40 Nazi feature films (out of 1200 made between 1933 and 1944) that are not available to the German public to see. It will be shown in Los Angeles June 1 and 2 at six Laemmle Theaters.The description from the Telluride Film Festival catalog says:"Twelve hundred feature films were made in Germany’s Third Reich. According to experts, some 100 of these were blatant Nazi p … [Read more...]

High-octane ‘San Andreas’ tells audiences to be prepared

Carla Gugino and Dwayne Johnson in "San Andreas" (Warner Bros. Pictures/Jasin Boland)

Ray (Dwayne Johnson) is a Los Angeles firefighter who heads a team of helicopter rescuers. Not long after saving a girl whose car is resting on a canyon cliff, the world seems about to end: San Andreas, Calif.'s main north-south earthquake fault line is triggered by a series of quakes around Hoover Dam in Nevada.But Ray's world is already fragile because of a pending divorce from his wife, Emma (Carla Gugino), and the earlier death of one of his two daughters. Emma introduces him to her new … [Read more...]

‘Marie’s Story’ captures life’s sacramental dimensions

Ariana Rivoire as Marie Heurtin and Isabelle Carré as Sr. Marguerite in the film "Marie's Story" (Film Movement)

In 1899, when deaf and blind Marie Heurtin is 14 years old, her loving father brings her from the family farm to the Larnay Institute near Poitiers, France, run by the Daughters of Wisdom. The young girl, played by Ariana Rivoire in the film "Marie's Story," extends her face and hands to the warm sun as they ride in the wagon. Marie hugs her father. She is at peace.The sisters at the institute are either deaf or hearing, and the girls they teach are all deaf. When the mother superior … [Read more...]

‘The Messengers’ is like a Christian zombie movie for the small screen

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 The rapture is coming -- again. A new television series, "The Messengers," premieres at 9 p.m./8 p.m. Central today, April 17, on The CW because "the wheels of Revelation have begun to turn." The end is near, and "angels" or Messengers, have appeared.The Messengers are five select people, men and women, unknown to the others, who are gifted with the ability to heal others. Then there is "The Man" (Diogo Morgado), who wields death and destruction even though he looks like a totally … [Read more...]

Neither faith nor magic saves ‘Little Boy’ from its muddled message

Jakob Salvati as the title character in "Little Boy" (©Metanoia Films)

I imagine that the writers of "Little Boy," Pepe Portillo and Alejandro Monteverde, who also directs, wanted to make a sweet film about faith and the love between a father and his son. They surely wanted audiences to see life through a Catholic lens when they crafted this highly structured, ambitious, well-cast, and beautiful-looking movie, which opens in theaters April 24. Unfortunately, while it may make you shed a tear at the end, it's for all the wrong reasons.As "Little Boy" opens, we … [Read more...]

Sr. Rose at the Movies #121 of Top Church Blogs

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  Church Relevance, "founded in March 2006 by Kent Shaffer, Church Relevance explores the intersection of theology and methodology – what we do vs what Christ said" has posted its 2015 list of the top 300 Church Blogs.I am pleasantly surprised, and grateful, that "Sister Rose at the Movies" here at Patheos is ranked #121! (Last year it was #126).The Anchoress, the blog that belongs to our venerable leader of Catholic blogs on Patheos, Elizabeth Scalia, is #31.There a … [Read more...]

‘Woman in Gold’ is a first-rate detective story that unravels a decades-old mystery

Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds in "Woman in Gold" (The Weinstein Company/Robert Viglasky)

"Woman in Gold" is a David-and-Goliath story. When the sister of Maria Altmann (Helen Mirren) dies in Los Angeles, she chats with an old family friend from Vienna about some information she found in her sister's belongings. Maria's friend says her son, Randol Schoenberg (Ryan Reynolds), a young lawyer with time on his hands, might be able to help her. Randol shows up at Maria's home near Beverly Hills. Although he is reluctant, he listens to her story about a famous painting of her aunt, Adele … [Read more...]

‘A.D. The Bible Continues’ kicks off with a familiar story

Juan Pablo Di Pace as Jesus in "A.D. The Bible Continues" (CNS/Courtesy Arenas Group)

"A.D. The Bible Continues" Premieres 9 p.m./8 p.m. Central, Sunday, April 5, NBC The NBC website for this new miniseries on the New Testament says: "The epic story picks up where 'The Bible' left off, exploring the aftermath of events following the Crucifixion."Actually, this is a somewhat misleading statement. The opening episode of the 12-part series that premieres on Easter Sunday begins with Pilate's words "Truth? What is truth?" and images of the nails being forged that … [Read more...]


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