‘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...]

Metropolitan Museum Offers Free Access to 400,000 Digital Images

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 Noah by Lorenzo Monaco, 1370-1425 On May 16 the Metropolitan Museum of Art announced a new open access policy that allows users to browse and download images for non-commercial use:  The Collection Online:"... more than 400,000 high-resolution digital images of public domain works in the Museum’s world-renowned collection may be downloaded directly from the Museum’s website for non-commercial use—including in scholarly publications in any media—without permission from the Museum … [Read more...]

How movies can “save” people

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You know, there is something about all these new faith-based movies that bothers me. While they are well intended (and looking to make good box office just like regular Hollywood movies), they aren't really art. They are created to give, promote, propagate the "Christian message" to people who, for the most part, already believe and are willing to forgive the sermon-like confessional (apologetic) nature of the movie. These message movies (e.g. "God's Not Dead") differ from movies that tell … [Read more...]

‘The Monuments Men” wonders: is art worth a life?

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 Here's my review for "The Monuments Men" at The INNudstry with Sister Rose on the INNetwork:This is my written review at The National Catholic ReporterThe plot for filmmaker (director, co-writer, co-producer, lead actor) George Clooney's newest film is at once simple and complex as well as intriguing. The promo lines for the film say that "The Monuments Men" is about the greatest treasure hunt in history, but it's so much more than this. It's about culture, justice, art, war and the … [Read more...]

Traveling Out of this World through Film: finding perspective on human existence

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Movies can help us find perspective on our own existence by taking us to infinity and beyond. Hollywood and the film industry have been called many things, including the “dream factory.” Hollywood’s constructed dreams are there for us to see and hear, and for better or for worse they engage our inner world of the imagination. Just as films make invisible realities visible, they give flesh to a person’s subconscious and conscious hopes and desires. If they are effective, narrative fictional films … [Read more...]

“Francis and the Sultan” documentary released with great timing

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 When it was announced March 13 that the church had a new pope who had taken the name Francis, the first thing that popped into my head was, "St. Francis was the first one to reach out to Islam." This fact had just recently had been reinforced when I screened a new documentary from Franciscan Media, "In the Footprints of Francis and the Sultan: a Model for Peacemaking."Talk about great timing for the release of this two-part DVD written and produced by Franciscan Sr. Kathleen A. … [Read more...]

Les Miserables: a conversation about what the movie means

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   Here's is a conversation that I had with radio host Sharon DiCicca of Toronto's Radio Maria. Sharon is a wonderful host and producer and I think you will enjoy this show.  HMWN Radio Maria is a Canadian Catholic Radio Station based in Toronto.This is a link to the HMWN Radio Maria Audio Archives:Click here for the audio file: In conversation about the 2012 film"Les Miserables". -- Sharon DiCecco says:  -- -- To love another person is to see the face of … [Read more...]

Catholic Christian criteria for awarding films

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 SIGNIS and INTERFILM Criteria for Juries I have had the privilege of serving on Catholic and Ecumenical Juries at Berlin (2004), Venice (2000, 2010), and Locarno (2006). Here are the criteria that SIGNIS, the World Catholic Organization for Communication, and INTERFILM (the International Interchurch Film Organization), have developed to inform and guide jury members as they discern winning films:The Ecumenical Jury makes awards to films and to filmmakers according to the c … [Read more...]

Pianist brings mother’s Holocaust experiences to life

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Live theater is always fresh even when the story breaks your heart. The actors pour themselves into the feat of becoming another and convincing us that their pain, joy, dilemmas, tragedy and triumph are real.Through the kindness of friends, Daughter of St. Paul Sr. Marie Hunt and I were able to experience "The Pianist of Willesden Lane" at the Geffen Playhouse at UCLA.The Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater within the playhouse is intimate at only 115 seats, or parlor armchairs, arranged on … [Read more...]

Listening to Flannery O’Connor

I was chatting with an acquaintance recently about Flannery O’Connor (1925 – 1964) when he told me about a recent find and that it is available on the Internet.In January 2012 “Deep South” online magazine  editor Erin Z. Bass wrote: “Professor of English with a focus on Southern lit and women’s studies at UL Lafayette, Dr. Mary Ann Wilson was cleaning out her office and came across an old audio reel labeled ‘Flannery O’Connor.’ It turned out to be a recording of the author’s 1962 lecture at the … [Read more...]


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