‘Call the Midwife’ is a celebration of life

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  During the 1950s, the Anglican sisters of St. Raymond Nonnatus ran a midwifery service and clinic out of their convent in the Poplar section of London's East End. Working alongside them were young women who were trained nurses and qualified midwives. "Call the Midwife," a BBC dramatic series, is based on the stirring and candid memoirs of nurse Jennifer Lee Worth (1935-2011). When the first episodes of "Call the Midwife" aired in the United Kingdom, it was the only … [Read more...]

‘Fury’ fuels the ‘war is hell’ mentality without shining fresh light on it

From left: Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Brad Pitt, Michael Pena and Jon Bernthal in "Fury" (CNS/Columbia Pictures)

"Fury" is writer/director David Ayer's latest action film, moving from city streets ("Street Kings," "S.W.A.T.") to the battlefields of World War II. Sgt. Don "Wardaddy" Collier (Brad Pitt) commands a five-man crew on a tank named "Fury." Their assignment is to join with three other tank units and first take one German town, then move on to take a crossroads and hold it. It is after the landing at Normandy -- many men have been killed, yet they must go on and do their jobs. The fifth man on the … [Read more...]

‘Left Behind’ or lost in space?

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The remake of the 2000 film "Left Behind" is based on the first of 12 best-selling novels by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins. This new film is a watered-down and somewhat changed version of the earlier movie with a bigger budget and not much else. There is barely enough undercooked scriptural theology to critique in the vacuous writing and painful acting. However, it offers an opportunity to explore dispensationalism, a popular way of interpreting the Book of Revelation, an idea that never comes … [Read more...]

‘Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day’ refreshing, sweet

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Alexander Cooper (Ed Oxenbould) is eleven years old and he is always having bad days. He loves to study about Australia but the geography teacher assigns that country to another student, leaving him disappointed. It’s just another bad day. It’s also the day before his birthday and things are not going well for anyone in his family. His mom, Kelly (Jennifer Garner) works for a publisher and a glitch in the launch of a new children’s book threatens her career. His dad, Ben (Steve Carrell), has been … [Read more...]

‘The Heart of the Story: Storytelling in a Digital Age’

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  Here is a link to a presentation I gave at the Communicators for Women Religious (CWR, formerly the NCNWR) conference last week in Long Beach.Click hereHere is the description for the presentation:How shall we tell our stories in the age when traditional and new media converge are creating new languages that in turn create new networks, communities and contested discourse? What are the key elements to craft our stories and to mediate those produced by the … [Read more...]

‘The Decent One’: Documentary on Himmler a compelling contribution to Holocaust filmography

Heinrich Himmler in 1941 (Kino Lorber, Inc.)

 Heinrich Himmler -- the Nazi Gestapo chief, head of the German police in the Third Reich, head of the Reich Main Security Office, and Reich Minister of the Interior -- was born to a Catholic family Oct. 7, 1900, in Munich. His father, Gebhard Himmler, was a tutor to Prince Heinrich of Bavaria, who in turn was young Heinrich's godfather.Heinrich was a good student but poor athlete, and his father used his influence with the royal family so that Heinrich could enter officer training … [Read more...]

‘Exodus: Gods and Kings’ – a sneak peek and the new trailer!

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Tonight at Fox Studios, Sr. Jennifer and I got to see clips from the upcoming December 12 release, Ridley Scott’s epic “Exodus: Gods and Kings.”The first scenes they showed us were the usual “sword and sandal” story and battles; Moses was wearing black and riding a black horse; his "cousin" Rhamses (Joel Edgerton) wearing silverish garments and riding a white horse. The conflict is signaled early on. The film became interesting quickly when Moses (Christian Bale) tours the quarries where the … [Read more...]

‘The Good Lie’ and the true story of the Lost Boys of Sudan

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 Catholic moral theology teaches that it is never acceptable to lie. It also teaches that there is no such thing as a “good lie,” so the title of the film is unfortunate. But it is in literary reference to Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer, as the film demonstrates. During the Second Sudanese Civil War (1983–2005), thousands of boys and girls were orphaned when their parents were killed. Some of them were recruited to be child soldiers; others marched hundreds of miles to a refugee camp in Ke … [Read more...]

Dolphin Tale 2 (Take 2)

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Note: C. Alexander won the "give away" bag of Dolphin Tale 2 loot! It’s been a few years since Sawyer Nelson (Nathan Gamble) rescued Winter, a bottlenose dolphin. Winter was caught in a trap off the coast of Florida and had part of her tail amputated. Sawyer, Dr. Clay Haskett (Harry Connick Jr.), his daughter, Hazel (Cozi Zuehlsdorff), and the crew of the Clearwater Marine Aquarium are now faced with another challenge. The dolphin that had been Winter’s companion, Panama, has di … [Read more...]

‘Orange Is the New Black’ star Michael Harney on playing ‘bad’ guys but keeping God close

From over at Fox411 (Fox News) on Facebook comes an encouraging interview with the actor Michael Harney:By Sasha BogurskyPublished September 24, 2014FoxNews.comActor Michael Harney plays prison counselor Sam Healy in "Orange Is the New Black." (Bryony Shermur)Michael Harney is best known for his roles on "Deadwood" as the drunkard Steve Fields and Det. Mike Roberts on "NYPD Blue." He now stars in "Orange Is the New Black" on Netflix as corrections officer Sam Healy.The veteran … [Read more...]


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