TCM Classic Film Festival April 28-May 1, 2016 Hollywood

 If you are a film buff and like classic films from every era, don't miss the upcoming TCM Film Festival April 28 - May 1st.What's really cool is that I will be introducing "The Song of Bernadette" on Saturday evening, April 30 and "The King of Kings" on Sunday, May 1 (this year marks the film's 55th anniversary.) There are a few more of my favorite films playing such as "The Keys of the Kingdom." It's an excellent slate of films.Click here for all the films. The site is very … [Read more...]

“Noble” is now on DVD

In the early 1950s, Christina Noble (Gloria Cramer Curtis), a young girl from a poor part of Dublin, Ireland, aspires to be a singer when she grows up. She prays and lights candles to Our Lady to care for her sick mother. When she dies, her father, Thomas (Liam Cunningham), an alcoholic, loses custody of the children, and the courts send them to separate institutions.At 17, Christina finishes school, but more hardships follow when she is raped. Friends bring her to the nuns for care. But … [Read more...]

The power of movies about nuns: “Seeing the Light, Hearing the Call…”

I am so pleased to announce the publication of a superb article at the University of Nebraska's online Journal for Religion and Film about how movies about nuns influenced many young women in their discernment and decision to enter religious life. The article," Seeing the Light, Hearing the Call: Women Religious as Spectators and Subjects of Popular Nun Films" is by Professor Maureen Sabine of the University of Hong Kong. It follows her 2013 book: VEILED DESIRES: INTIMATE PORTRAYALS OF NUNS IN P … [Read more...]

‘The Story of God’ with host and guide Morgan Freeman

National Geographic’s beautiful and intelligent filmic pilgrimage about God is narrated by an actor who comes with solid credentials: Morgan Freeman played God in two feature films directed by Tom Shadyac: “Bruce Almighty” (2003) and “Evan Almighty” (2007). In “The Story of God,” aired as a six-part series beginning Sunday, Freeman moors himself in Greenwood, Miss., his hometown and source of his family and identity.From Greenwood, he travels the world in search of beliefs about the afterlife … [Read more...]

‘The Young Messiah’ a unique imagining of Jesus as a child

In this cinematic imagining of Jesus (Adam Greaves-Neal) as a child of about seven or eight living with his parents in the small Jewish community of Alexandria, Egypt, we meet a young boy who is bullied and willing to stand up for another child, a girl, being picked on as well. With some devilish mischief thrown in the brawl, a child dies and Jesus is accused. When Jesus sneaks to the boys bedside he lays his hands on his face and prays, the boy awakens – or as some believe, comes back to life. T … [Read more...]

The Catholic Legion of Decency – a bibliography

I am posting this bibliography as a reference to the Turner Classic Movies series "Condemned" that I am hosting on the Thursdays of March, 2016 (17 of the 27 films, that is.) Please feel free to add titles that I may have missed and refer to my previous post with a paper on the history of the Catholic Legion of Decency. These titles are listed on Amazon but some are no longer available or are very expensive; a library may be your best bet to reference these.Catholic Crusade Against the … [Read more...]

Statement from Daughters of St. Paul: “Condemned” series on TCM hosted by Sr. Rose Pacatte

Statement from the Daughters of St. PaulBeginning on Thursday, March 3, Sr. Rose Pacatte, the founding Director of the Pauline Center for Media Studies in Culver City, CA, will be providing introductions and commentary on a series of films for Turner Classic Movies (TCM) entitled “Condemned.” While the title is provocative, the subject consists in twenty-seven films that were condemned by the Catholic Legion of Decency between the years 1933 – 1965, and then some in the following years … [Read more...]

“Censoring the Silver Screen” a History of the Legion of Decency

This paper was written by Sister Nancy Usselmann, FSP in 2013 as a Church History project. It's a good overview of the history of the Legion of Decency in view of the upcoming series on TCM "Condemned" that I will be hosting (all the Thursdays of March, 2016).HISTORY OF MOVIE CENSORSHIP IN THE UNITED STATESLong before the Catholic Church became officially involved in rating the morality in films, the Motion Picture Industry itself had developed it’s own form of self- censorship due to … [Read more...]

‘Black Mass’ ‘Everest’ and 33 Films at the Venice Film Festival

 VENICE, ITALY As most people know, Venice, Italy, is one of the most beautiful places on earth. The very first world cinema festival was held there in 1932, with Moscow, Cannes, Locarno and others following. The Venice “Biennale” missed the war years, reconvening in 1947. At that time, the very first of the now numerous independent juries was established: the International Catholic Organization for Cinema (O.C.I.C.), now called SIGNIS, the international Catholic organization for com … [Read more...]

‘Batkid Begins’ – a wish with a life of its own

As news of the terrible shootings at the AME Church in Charleston, S.C., broke Wednesday, a couple hundred people were gathered at the Landmark Theater on Pico Blvd. in Los Angeles for the premiere of the documentary film “Batkid Begins.” “Batkid Begins” is the epitome of what a great community that America can be and is, the antithesis of the havoc a lone mass shooter wreaked on a group of people studying the Bible in their church.“Batkid” is Miles Scott, a little boy from a small town in No … [Read more...]