The Role of Religion in Politics
The Sermon I Didn't Preach

Three Recent Films


I must say that I'm surprised by how high this film in ranking on numerous end of year film lists. Though I enjoyed seeing it and laughed and was made uncomfortable, I don't think it is a great film qua film. Nor is it the best social commentary on America since de Tocqueville (Time magazine). It is interesting seeing real Americans say some ridiculous and scary things, but the whole contrivance of the fake plot just didn't interest me at all.

2 film reels
3 popcorn kernels


Sure, it's a little overhyped, but I really enjoyed it. Pretty much every review I've read has nailed it on the head about some of the film's drawbacks. Though those descriptions are accurate, they just aren't relevant. It is a good, fun film. I found myself caught up in it and marvelling, especially, at the beauty of the costumes, make-up, set design, and cinematography. Jennifer has great star power. Eddie was great. Beyonce was gorgeous.

3 film reels
5 popcorn kernels

The Good Shepherd

Stunning! The best film I've seen yet this year. It is VERY slow going, but the reason why becomes apparent by the end. This is a film about evil. Not the active, showy kind of evil, but the banal, bureaucratic sort of evil, like in Hannah Arendt's take on Adolf Eichmann. I'm going to write more about this film, but in a way that will reveal plot details, because it is a film that merits discussion. But I'll do that in another place.

4 film reels
4 popcorn kernels


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We just got back from seeing Dreamgirls. I hadn't heard anything about it, just thought it looked like a good movie. It far surpassed my expectations. I thought Jennifer Hudson was wonderful. I loved her when she was on Idol, but not going farther in the show may have given her so many more opportunities. She made that movie.

Have you seen Rocky Balboa? I was surprised how my I liked that movie. It definitely honors the original.


I, too, felt like the plot was weird and unconvincing in a movie like this. I think it would've worked better as short vingettes just crammed together a la Jack Ass. Say what you will about Jack Ass but that's some funny stuff and it works without having to add any drama.

I got to see THE DEPARTED, APOCALYPTO, BORAT and CASINO ROYALE over the holidays. Dep. and Apl. were wonderful and deserving of accolades. Bor. was just "okay." Bond was fantastic and has be begging for the sequels.

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