If you follow Pop Theology, you’ll notice I’ve been focusing on documentaries as of late. The five Oscar nominees are rich viewing experiences that incite a variety of emotional responses and will no doubt contribute, in very important ways, to ongoing dialogue around issues as diverse as the procurement of AIDS treatment drugs and the [...]
With frequent accounts of random gun violence, the vehemence with which many Americans cling to their weapons, and the on-going debate over the influence of violent media on consumers, anyone who suggests that perhaps we are an increasingly peaceful (or less violent) species might be laughed out of…or violently removed from…the room. Yet this is [...]
Like so many horror films, my problems with romantic comedies often stem from the stupidity of the main characters. So much of the gruesome deaths…or the heart-breaking separations…results from dumb choices taken further to dumber actions. I found Celeste & Jesse Forever to be weighed down by such stupidity.
After the Super Bowl, Richard called me to vent some more about Ray Lewis. In the course of our conversation, he posed a difficult theological question about the fervently devoted Raven. Last night, I watched Denzel Washington‘s latest Oscar-nominated film, Flight, which put Richard’s question and Ray Lewis’ faith into (for me) fresh perspective.
One of this year’s Oscar-nominated documentaries, How To Survive a Plague, should be annual required viewing during LGBTQ History Month (that’s October here in the States if you’re wondering). It’s an expertly crafted film that not only looks back at a tumultuous time in that community’s history, but how it, against seemingly insurmountable odds, changed [...]
There are some difficult documentaries in the Oscar field this year. Filmmakers have addressed rape in the military, grassroots HIV treatment, Israeli/Palestinian conflict, and controversial Israeli secret service activities. These are hardly feel-good viewing experiences. There is one other documentary in the mix that is not like the others, one that provides a more purely [...]
Like few other media, film can capture the fragility of life and the pain of its loss. It also has the ability to more viscerally capture instances in which that loss results from injustice and oppression. Few recent films have done this as powerfully as one of this year’s Oscar-nominated documentaries, 5 Broken Cameras.
I’ve found some unintentional yet common threads through some of my filmwatching over the past year, especially in light of having read Serene Jones’ phenomenal book, Trauma and Grace. I’ve watched numerous films that manage to get at the long-term, invasive effects of traumatic experiences. Through sophisticated editing and brilliant acting, these films portray the [...]