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Should I #BoycottNetflix? (Part 1 of 2)

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By James Powers Back around Christmas, there was a big furor about an incident of apparent blasphemy on Netflix. A comedy special called The First Temptation of Christ had recently premiered on the streaming service, and portrayed, well… a gay Jesus bringing his boyfriend home to meet the family, among other things. Oof. The film, produced by Brazilian comedy troupe …

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‘1917’, WWI Cinema, and the Horrors of War

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– By Sam Hendrian – Hollywood is not-too-fondly renowned for its glorification of terrible things, especially war. Violence has the dangerous ability to entertain rather than disgust, undermining our instinctive understanding of human dignity. Yet despite this unfortunate trend, there are countless examples that do just the opposite, including Sam Mendes’s recently-released, critically-acclaimed World War I film 1917. With the …

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Why We Still Need Little Women

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  – By Sam Hendrian – As someone who enjoyed reading Louisa May Alcott’s beloved novel Little Women, and as an admirer of Greta Gerwig’s directorial talents, I went to see the latest cinematic adaptation of the classic story and enjoyed it immensely. Of course, when people are constantly questioning whether Hollywood still has a bone of originality left in …

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Netflix’s ‘Messiah’ Offers a Surprisingly Thoughtful – and Tense – Exploration of Faith

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By James Powers One of the more persistent (and annoying) labels given to Jesus is that of political revolutionary. Especially lately, it’s trendy to claim that his primary purpose was to knock down tyrants and give power to the disenfranchised masses; that he was a member of the same club that includes Gandhi and Che and the barricade boys from …

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With ‘The Rise of Skywalker’, Can Star Wars Finally Leave the Past Behind?

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By James Powers Disney has been trying to usher in a new era for Star Wars with The Mandalorian on Disney+, and it looks to end one this weekend with The Rise of Skywalker. The studio is anxious to make a good impression on audiences after a rather troubled past couple of years. But I’m unsure that either the franchise …

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Dialogue and Dance: Seeking Understanding and Friendship in ‘The Two Popes’

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– By Matthew Sawczyn – Adapted from the play The Pope by writer Anthony McCarten, Netflix’s awards season gem about an imagined meeting between Pope Benedict and the future Pope Francis actually begins with a third pope: the deceased Pope John Paul II. The bells toll mournfully over St. Peter’s Square, as news of the pontiff’s passing quickly spreads. The …

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Uniting the World Through Entertainment: The Imagineering Story

In Culture, Featured, Reviews, Sam Hendrian, TV Reviews by Impact Admin1 Comment

  – By Sam Hendrian – “What we are selling is not escapism, but reassurance.” This quote from legendary Disney imagineer John Hench captures Disney’s core mission perfectly, even if the multibillion-dollar company does not always live up to it. Escapism is predominantly commerical and maybe a little psychological; reassurance is profoundly spiritual. In The Imagineering Story, a six-part documentary …

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‘Honey Boy’: A Lesson on Masculinity from an Unlikely Source

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By James Powers Lately, one doesn’t have to look far to find a lot of movies that are deeply concerned with the female experience, but nonetheless directed by men. Assassination Nation, Unsane, Widows, Suspiria, Tully and the upcoming Bombshell, to name just a few. Not that there’s anything wrong with male directors making films about female protagonists – “write what …

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Marriage Story: Finding Life in Suffering

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– By Matthew Sawczyn – Religious or not, a broken marriage may be one of life’s most painful tragedies. Each circumstance is different of course, but actor William Shatner might not have been far off when he said, “Divorce is probably as painful as death.” You will find a sea of quotes on the topic, if you go searching: inspirational …

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The Liberty of Forgiveness in ‘Waves’

In Classic Film Throwback Series, Culture, Featured, Movie Reviews, Reviews, Sam Hendrian by Amanda ValdovinosLeave a Comment

– By Sam Hendrian – *Contains spoilers Waves is one of the most powerful movies I have seen in a long time. It is complicatedly simple, heartbreakingly inspiring, and many other perplexing paradoxes. While tough to watch at times, it had me spontaneously praying, “Oh God, this is beautiful!” on multiple occasions, and if that is not a sign of …