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POP CULTURE FROM A SPIRITUAL POINT OF VIEW
"A spiritual spin on this week's box office hits "-ABC World News Tonight
"A web site devoted to spirituality in movies" -The Wall Street Journal
"Examines movies' spiritual content" -The Christian Science Monitor
"The popularity of Hollywood Jesus has been a pleasant surprise" -Christianity Today

WHAT'S NEW



WHAT'S NEW
May 2006 Updates
May 29
X-MEN 3Click to go to Maurice's BlogI didn’t exactly go into this movie with high hopes.
X-MEN: THE LAST STAND

The team that brought us the first two entries of the X-Men franchise are bringing us Superman Returns. Now instead of waiting that extra time to let that team deliver the third entry into the franchise, the powers that be decide to rush the vehicle in the hands of director Brett Ratner (Rush Hour, Red Dragon). Ladies and gentlemen, I give you X-Men: The Last Stand..
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS

X-MEN 3Click to go to Mike's BlogThis wonderful cast brings the comic to life and while some who love the comic won’t be as thrilled
X-MEN: THE LAST STAND

Okay, right from the outset for those that wonder, this is not the best of the X-Men series, I still hold that honor out for X-Men II, but, it is still a very good movie, I believe better than the first.
Review by MIKE FURCHES

X-MEN 3Click to go to BlogMany things about this film impressed me, but I walked away mostly impacted by Jean Grey.
X-MEN: THE LAST STAND

Sitting comfortably in my seat of expectation, I surmised that the primary forces for good and evil would be as clearly defined as previous X-Men films. The “Last Stand” would simply be the final battle of wit and will between Xavier and Magneto. From that comfort zone, the phoenix, Jean Grey (Famke Janssen), arose from the flames of predictability and hung her allegiance in the balances.
Review by MELINDA LEDMAN

The Break UpTHE BREAK UP
Director: Peyton Reed.
Stars: Jennifer Aniston, Vince Vaughn

After Brooke (Aniston) calls it quits with her boyfriend Gary (Vaughn), neither person is willing to move out of the condo they share. Taking the advice of their repsective friends and confidants (and a few total strangers), they both engage in mental warfare designed to force the other person to flee the premises -- until they both realize they might be fighting to keep their relationship alive.

THE OMENTHE OMEN
Director: John Moore
Stars: Liev Schreiber, Julia Stiles

An American government official (Schreiber) and his wife (Stiles) come to realize that their adopted son may just be the devil - literally.

PEACEFUL WARRIORPEACEFUL WARRIOR
Director: Victor Salva
Stars: Scott Mechlowicz, Nick Nolte, Amy Smart

Collegiate gymnast Dan Millman (Mechlowicz) strikes up a friendship with Socrates (Nolte), an older man who becomes the athlete's mentor and opens his mind to a new way of living and thinking.

May 27

AN INCONVENIENT TRUTHClick to go to David's BlogGLOBAL WARMING WARNING
AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH

The film weaves the science of global warming with Al Gore's personal history and longtime commitment to communicating the need to reverse the effects of global climate change.

VIDEO REVIEW by David Bruce

SEE NO EVILClick to go to David's BlogCONSEQUENCES OF REPRESSION
SEE NO EVIL

Sentenced to community service, a group of teens are dispatched to fix up a ramshackle hotel. Little do they know the hotel is home to a manical killer who looks to murder them one by one.
VIDEO REVIEW by David Bruce

Over the HedgeClick to go to David's BlogThis movie totally took me by surprise.
OVER THE HEDGE

This movie was so incredibly funny. Let me say this again This Movie was FUNNY. This review is probably coming off as scattered and un organized because every time I try to think of something to write about, I start laughing at some of the scenes in this movie. Not many movies make you laugh a day later.
VIDEO REVIEW by David Bruce

May 26
X-MEN 3JAMES HARLEMAN'S BLOGThe Greatest Sacrifice Will Be Made
X-MEN: THE LAST STAND

Most of the characters yearn for peace and community and strive for that goal, but it always seems out of reach. There is a hopelessness that pervades X-Men: The Last Stand and the only thing that brings any peace is a final, desperate act of true love and sacrifice.
Review by JAMES HARLEMAN

May 25

Over the HedgeClick to go to Yo's BlogWow! It delivers!
X-MEN: THE LAST STAND

If you’ve been disappointed with this years summer “event” movies so far (Poseidon sank, Da Vinci was a snooze, and although M:i:III was solid, it wasn’t quite “big” enough), X-Men: The Last Stand definitely doesn’t disappoint.
Review by YO

Over the HedgeMARCUS PITTMANThis movie totally took me by surprise.
OVER THE HEDGE

This movie was so incredibly funny. Let me say this again This Movie was FUNNY. This review is probably coming off as scattered and un organized because every time I try to think of something to write about, I start laughing at some of the scenes in this movie. Not many movies make you laugh a day later.
Review by MARCUS PITTMAN

May 23

THE DA VINCI CODEClick to go to PapaBear's blogTo start with, I was disappointed.
THE DA VINCI CODE

To start with, I was disappointed. Not that the Da Vinci Code wasn’t a “good” movie, more so that it wasn’t a “great” movie. With all the hype I had expected something more than I got. Maybe that was the problem -- all the hype had built up my expectations beyond what the movie delivered.
Review by PAPABEAR

Over the HedgeClick to go to BlogWhat separates you from opportunity?
OVER THE HEDGE

What are you hungry for? What will fill that longing in your belly? Food? Thrills? Comfort? Or is it something more? RJ the Raccoon discovers the answers to all these questions in the new DreamWorks computer animated comedy OVER THE HEDGE.
Review by MATT KINNE

May 21
Art School ConfidentialClick to go to ELISABETH'S BLOGSometimes our passions don’t correspond with reality.
Art School Confidential

Sure, they may be the only thing we can think about. They may be the only thing we truly know about ourselves and the life we are meant to lead. But when our passions meet the world around us, the truth is that some are just not meant to be, meant to ever be, or at least not meant to be right now. Especially when it comes to the creative side of things…
Review by ELISABETH LEITCH

THE DA VINCI CODEClick to go to David's BlogFlash PowerPoint Review
THE DA VINCI CODE

WISDOM'S SEARCH FOR TURTH

Downloadable PowerPoint presentation with film clips of the Da Vinci Code and the Secret Wisdom contained in the Bible

Visual review by David Bruce

THE DA VINCI CODEClick to go to Yo's BlogAfter all the hype and controversy,
THE DA VINCI CODE

I find it ironic that the one thing no one anticipated from this movie is that it would turn out to be so bad. Of course, how could it? It has such a high caliber of talent; Oscar winners both behind the camera and on the screen. There’s even an Oscar in the closet of the screenwriter, so surely this would be the summer event movie of the year, right? Well...not so much...
Review by YO

THE DA VINCI CODETim SpanburgWell, Jesus Christ had a daughter.
The Church is full of liars.
THE DA VINCI CODE

Christianity is actually based upon pagan religions. Jesus died 'for the betterment of humanity.' So, what question is left unanswered. Perhaps this one: What is the worst part of The Da Vinci Code? There are several possibilities, so let me sift through some of them for you.
Review by TIM SPANSBURG

May 20

THE DA VINCI CODEClick to go to David's BlogFlash PowerPoint Review
THE DA VINCI CODE

THE PLACE OF WOMEN IN THE CHURCH

Downloadable PowerPoint presentation with film clips of the painful and difficult historical issue of the place of women in the church as underscored by The Da Vinci Code

Visual review by David Bruce

THE DA VINCI CODEClick to go to David's Blog41 EXPERT ESSAYS ON
THE DA VINCI CODE

Erwin Raphael McManus, Thomas S. Fortson, Jr, Larry Poland, Lee Strobel,Phil Cooke, Robert Johnston, Dorothy Kelley Patterson, Gordon P. Robertson, William D. Romanowski, Frederica Mathewes-Green, Vishal Mangalwadi, Chuck Colson, Terry Mattingly, Angela Elwell Hunt, Erwin W. Lutzer, Gloria Gaither, Mark Miravalle, Rev. François Rossier, S.M., Sister Rose Pacatte, Tony Campolo, John L. Allen, Monsignor Francis J. Maniscalco, Alan Schreck, Darrell L. Bock, Patrick Henry Reardon, Mark D. Roberts, Fr. Joseph Huneycutt, Mark Mittelberg, Ben Witherington III, Beverly Roberts Gaventa, Bryan Litfin, Charles C. Ryrie, Lisa DeBoer, Susanna Bede Caroselli, Hugh Hewitt, Thomas P. Rausch, Douglas E. Cowan, Craig Detweiler, George Barna, Darrell L. Bock, and Richard J. Mouw.

THE DA VINCI CODEMARCUS PITTMANThe power of
THE DA VINCI CODE

lies not on secular ears, but on Christian’s action.

In the theater I was tempted to snicker out loud and moan and groan at the “Dejesusfying” parts. I wanted badly to stand up to the screen and yell blasphemy and throw the over priced popcorn at Leigh Teabing. But doing that wouldn’t help anything. In fact it would make the negative image of Christianity the movie tries to present perfectly accurate.
Review by MARCUS PITTMAN

May 19

THE DA VINCI CODEGo to Mike Gunn's BlogFlaws aside, it's still about identity.
THE DA VINCI CODE

We all struggle with or against faith (one way or another) and what we should do as a result—and Sophie, at least, matures into her role as a descendent of Jesus Christ. She is a stark contrast to Silas, who seeks redemption through self-flagellation, while never coming to a knowledge of the truth.
Review by MIKE GUNN

DRAWING RESTRAINT 9Go to Greg's BlogSingle-minded pursuit of personal artistic vision.
DRAWING RESTRAINT 9

There are some nice visual touches in Drawing Restraint 9; but director Matthew Barney overdoes much of what he does well and takes up far too much screen time to do the rest. This movie could have made its statements in easily a third of the screen time. But Barney knows that, I think.
Review by GREG WRIGHT

May 18

JUST MY LUCKClick to go to Mark's BlogAs we all know, luck is a communicable disease...
JUST MY LUCK

Follows always-lucky Ashley Albright (Lohan) as she climbs higher and higher into the corporate world, with no effort at all. At the same time, Jake Hardin (Chris Pine) is just trying to climb out of his janitorial job with all the effort he can muster, but to no avail. Luck changes, however, when they meet at a masquerade ball and, for no other reason than to advance the plot, kiss 10 seconds after meeting one other...
Review by MARK STOKES

SEE NO EVILSEE NO EVIL
Director: Gregory Dark.
Stars: Glen Jacobs.

Sentenced to community service, a group of teens are dispatched to fix up a ramshackle hotel. Little do they know the hotel is home to a manical killer who looks to murder them one by one.

May 17

Over the HedgeOVER THE HEDGE
Director: Tim Johnson Karey Kirkpatrick.
Stars: Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Gene Wilder.

A mischievous racoon and his sensitive best-buddy turtle along with other forest creatures try to resist the evils and temptations of encroaching suburbia.

May 15

PoseidonClick to go to BlogWhat do you do when your life is turned upside down?
POSEIDON

How do you keep your head above water? How do you surface from your troubles? You need help. You need grace. You need someone who can show you the way. And sometimes, you need someone who will sacrifice him or herself for your safety. I’m talking about the new movie POSEIDON, but I could just as easily be talking about your life when a crisis hits.
Review by MATT KINNE

PoseidonClick to go to Yo's BlogPoseidon is basically Titanic without the exposition, character, drama, or romance.
POSEIDON

The film skips the usual time setting things up and basically gets right to it. Once the wave hits and the ship flips over, which is a pretty impressive sequence effects-wise, the film is very efficient in going through all the steps and scenes necessary for a disaster film. You don’t really get much more cliched or paint-by-numbers than this. However...
Review by YO

PoseidonClick to go to Ed's BlogPoseidon is not a good movie.
In fact, it is a pretty dismal one.

POSEIDON

The lead actors try their noblest to generate life from their limp characters, but even that cannot raise this ship above water. The special effects enter on cue, do their damage, and disappear without a hint of originality or artistic flair. This movie is no The Day After Tomorrow…and what does THAT say? The Poseidon Adventure pulled this story off in a vastly superior way back in 1972.
Review by ED TRAVIS

May 12

GOAL!Click to go to BlogIt surprised me with its candor
GOAL!

Several themes permeate this film, some predictable, some unlikely and truly surprising. To be honest, I expected a b-rated film that cheated us out of character and plot development... However, Goal! surprised me with its candor about the nature of life and success. Three primary themes of the film explore traditionally “un-American” truths...
Review by Melinda Ledman

PoseidonClick to go to David's BlogPOSEIDON

Video Review
by David Bruce

Hoot
Video Review
by David Bruce
JUST MY LUCK
Click to go to David's Blog
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogMission: Impossible IIIM:I:III
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogAn American Haunting AN AMERICAN HAUNTING
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogArt School ConfidentialART SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogGOAL!GOAL!
Video Review
by David Bruce
May 11

PoseidonPOSEIDON
Director: Shinji Aramaki Wolfgang Petersen. Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, Kurt Russell, Emmy Rossum

After a tidal wave causes a luxury ocean liner to capsize, a handful of survivors endeavor to find a way to the water's surface.

JUST MY LUCKJUST MY LUCK
Director: Donald Petrie. Stars: Lindsay Lohan, Chris Pine.

Sexy Manhattanite Ashley (Lindsay Lohan) is known to many as the luckiest woman around. After a chance encounter with a down-and-out young man (Chris Pine), however, she realizes that she's swapped her fortune for his.

GOAL!GOAL!
Director: Danny Cannon. Stars: Kuno Becker, Alessandro Nivola, Anna Friel.

An incredible sequence of events finds Santiago (Becker), a Los Angeleno with a lifelong dream to play professional soccer, granted a tryout with Newcastle United.

May 09

Mission: Impossible IIIClick to go to Maurice's BlogWell, the official summer blockbuster movie season has begun.
Mission: Impossible III

While it’s been a long time since MI:2, it’s only a short time for our intrepid hero, Ethan Hunt (the bad press belabored Tom Cruise) and the stakes of the spy game movie have been raised in this post-24, post-Mr. & Mrs. Smith, and post-Bourne Identity/Supremacy world. This director’s franchise was in need of reinventing itself after the convoluted plot of the first (Brian DePalma) and the too reminiscent of a James Bond feel of the second (John Woo) - so in the rare Hollywood brilliant move, Cruise taps J.J. Abrams (Lost) to helm the reinvention.
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS

Mission: Impossible IIIMI3 is a Big-Expensive-Loud-Summer-Hollywood-Explosionfest.
Mission: Impossible III

MI3 is a Big-Expensive-Loud-Summer-Hollywood-Explosionfest.
There is no getting around that. It's the Summer, Tom Cruise is in it, and it's Mission Impossible. Everything about this movie is explosive and loud. But underneath all the wonderful bangs and booms, this movie actually has what I didnt go there to see nor expect, A wonderfully well written plot!
Review by MARCUS PITTMAN

Flight 93Click to go to Mike's BlogA great movie... brilliant for a variety of reasons.
UNITED 93

There are many who are using this film for political propaganda, and to be honest, that just pisses me off. For those who say it shows a pro war perspective obviously haven’t seen it. It does not praise or justify the war, if anything, it shows how unprepared the United States was for such an attack.
Review by MIKE FURCHES

Click to go to Maurice's BlogThe movie is filled with wonderful performances.
INSIDE MAN

The movie is filled with wonderful performances. Frazier’s half sleuth/half street cop is pitted against Clive Owen’s mostly masked “villain,” Dalton Russell - bank robber-cum-father confessor - in a cat and mouse game of wits. Jodie Foster has a ball playing Madeline White, a mysterious power broker in need of having her own movie.
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS

Click to go to Maurice's BlogTim Burton has always been a hit and miss film-maker.
BIG FISH


Tim Burton has always been a hit and miss film-maker. When he’s on, he’s on (Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, Ed Wood, Edward Scissorhands, Beetlejuice), but when he’s off, he’s ... Planet of the Apes. Too often he’s a theme without a coherent plot (Batman Returns). However, with Big Fish, some of his favorite themes, alienation and the power of stories, combine with his strengths as a film-maker to craft a wonderful fable about fables.
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS
May 08

R.V.Tim SpanburgOh...the good ole days.
RV

Oh...the good ole days. The days with dinner at 6 o'clock sharp, where kids' biggest problems consisted of which girl to ask to a dance or how to talk your teacher into no homework for the weekend. The days when moms wore pink dresses, dads played catch with their kids, and gas was like 25 cents a gallon. Compare that with today, and it seems that as cheesy as I think the 50's culture might have been, there is something missing...
Review by TIM SPANBURG

An American Haunting This film was amazing.
AN AMERICAN HAUNTING

Perhaps most movies that deal with demon possession or ghosts cannot escape the fact that they are going to have a religious aspect to them, and An American Haunting is no different. In an initial attempt to rid their home of this spirit, the Bells invite their friend, Rev. James Johnston (Matthew Marsh), to try and help cast away this un-holy presence. First, he leads a séance and orders the spirit to leave “in the name of Jesus Christ.” At first, it seems to have worked until...
Review by BRIAN DEDMON

Mission: Impossible IIIClick to go to Yo's BlogWhat would the TV show Alias look like with a bigger budget, longer running time, and a male lead? The answer:
Mission: Impossible III

In fact, if you take Alias and add in a generous helping of True Lies, you pretty much know all you need about the latest outing for IMF agent Ethan Hunt and his team. Now this isn’t to say that M:I:III isn’t fun; it is, in fact, quite fun. However, after you’ve seen the film, you may be hard pressed to remember the difference between the movie and last week's adventure with Sydney Bristow.
Review by YO

An American HauntingClick to go to Mike's BlogAs bad as the movie is, there are ample questions about evil and good to make discussing it worthwhile.
AN AMERICAN HAUNTING

Growing up in Johnson City, Tennessee, I was rooted in the Americana storytelling tradition: Jonesboro, Tennessee’s oldest town and neighbor to Johnson City, is the home of the International Storytelling Festival. So I had heard the stories of the Bell Witch for years and was excited to hear about An American Haunting and its excellent cast.
Review by MIKE FURCHES

Flight 93Click to go to Jim's blogAn important movie to see, but very difficult to watch.
UNITED 93

Even though the tragic events of 9/11 have been seared into my heart and mind, this movie served, albeit painfully, to provide me with an inside glimpse of the suffering and hurt that so many people experienced on this fateful day.
Review by JIM DAVIS

AKEELAH AND THE BEEClick to go to Tom's BlogIt’s like Rocky for the mind!
AKEELAH AND THE BEE

the story of a trip to the National Spelling Bee by a girl from south-central Los Angeles, accurately captures the feel of spelling bee competitions as it tells an inspiring and uplifting personal story. The National Spelling Bee has been the subject of films before, most notably 2002’s independent documentary, Spellbound. What sets Akeelah and the Bee apart is that it’s like Rocky for the mind.
Review by TOM PRICE

May 05
An American HauntingAN AMERICAN HAUNTING
Director: Courtney Solomon. Stars: Donald Sutherland, Sissy Spacek, Rachel Hurd-Wood.

Between the years 1818-1820, the Bell Family of Red River, Tennessee was visited by an unknown presence that haunted the family and eventually ended up causing the death of one its members.

HootClick to go to Michael's blogOld Habits Die Hard
LA MUJER DE MI HERMANO

Ignacio has the money, the looks, even the permission in his culture to discard his unfaithful wife. He chooses not to. Because he has finally come clean with who he really is, he is able to sacrifice his needs for the greater good of someone else.
Review by MICHAEL SMITH

THE PROMISEJAMES HARLEMAN'S BLOGThe Promise of a Savior
THE PROMISE

A loveless life has left Princess Qingcheng jaded and empty. Without love, none of the things she has truly satisfy. Her expensive clothes, rich food, wealth, and fame are meaningless. The film poignantly contrasts the empty love of wealth and goods with the true love found in relationship and loving service.
Review by JAMES HARLEMAN

THE PROMISEJAMES HARLEMAN'S BLOGAn Interview with Chen Kaige
On Man, Myth, Destiny, and The Promise

I'm sort of a well-educated person, but the film is for the mass audiences, so how can I build a bridge between myself and the public to really let people understand what I'm trying to say? I think this is always a question mark every time that I start a film.
Interview by JAMES HARLEMAN

HootClick to go to Michael's blogHoot is a Hoot!
HOOT

Many of us are protective of our families and friends, believing that controlling our immediate environment is all that matters in this world. But there is a big beautiful world out there that needs protection. This film makes a penetrating statement: that there is a need to consider the downside of "progress." How many more condos and hotels do we need on the beaches of Florida?
Review by MICHAEL SMITH

HootClick to go to Kathy's blogNot Just Feathers!
HOOT

The message, plain and simple, is that everyone, no matter what size or age or species, has the right to have a place on this earth. Everyone and everything in all creation has a purpose and is important to the good of the whole. Something or someone destroyed sends out a ripple that affects much more than the moment in time when the destruction occurred.
Review by KATHY BLEDSOE

HootClick to go to Michael's blogA Talk with the Director and Stars of Hoot.
A Hoot of a Press Tour

Every school has a guy like Wil Shriner, a really smart kid that is a cut-up and still runs circles around the rest of the students mentally. But he's also very approachable. We are at this meeting to talk about his new movie, but one thing leads to another, and we end up in a share-your-childhood kind of a conversation.
Feature Article by MICHAEL SMITH

May 04
Click to go to Mike's Blog
VIRTUAL PEW

The Offical Online HJ
Fellowship
Hosted by Mike Furches
Mission: Impossible IIIMission: Impossible III

Abrams and Cruise turn the spy thriller on its ear as they hark back to the best aspects of the original TV series that inspired the films – a well-connected team of agents centered around a bold and heroic leader, the most exciting action stunts imaginable, and elaborate twists and turns that keep you on the edge of your seat. “M:i:III” is the action movie audiences have been waiting for.

Art School ConfidentialArt School Confidential

Director: Terry Zwigoff. Stars: Max Minghella, Sophia Myles, John Malkovich. Convinced that art school will put him on the path to fame, Jerome (Minghella) must come to terms with his barely-there talent, and the fact that the girl of his dreams has fallen in love with another student. Then, strangely, he's arrested as a suspected murderer, only to discover that crime might actually pay.

May 01
Flight 93Click to go to Tom's BlogThe first in a series of Hollywood portrayals
of the Sept. 11 tragedy.
UNITED 93

Its best for the way it re-creates the feelings of shock and bewilderment, and especially the gradual realization of the meaning of the series of events as they unfolded. For those of us who paid close attention to the events as they developed on Sept. 11, it carries us immediately back to the feelings we experienced on that day.
Review by TOM PRICE

Flight 93Click to go to Yo's BlogWhere were you on September 11, 2001?
UNITED 93

Where were you when the world changed? As you watch United 93, the memories of that day will return in a flood of raw emotion that will make it seem like the unthinkable happened yesterday, and perhaps that’s why it’s important that this film was made, because we should never forget what happened that day.
Review by YO



April 2006 Updates
April 29

R.V.In all honesty, I did not expect much from this movie.
RV

I am a fan of Robin Williams and his latest work including One Hour Photo, Death to Smoochy, Insomnia, and the Final Cut. So when I saw the previews for a straight-up comedy starring Robin I was not all that intrigued. But on the contrary let me say that this movie delivered. It had me laughing time and time again. I found that I had missed the good ol’ wacky-Robin we all know and love.
Review by BRIAN DEDMON

RVBeing a family is hard, messy work, but it’s worth it.
RV

As a dad with three kids of my own, I can say that I identified pretty strongly with Bob. I’ve done stupid things in the name of keeping my family from worry and I let life get in the way of being a father all too often. I think that we could all learn something from the Gorenickes about not letting soccer games, doctor’s appointments, technology, and jobs interfere and remembering why we’re together...
Review by SCOTT ROCHE

Flight 93Go see United 93. Period.
UNITED 93

The entire movie is real time, maybe give and take a few minutes. Most of the movie is thru the eyes of the Air Traffic Controllers. You watch the radar with them. The fact that you know what is happening allows the movie to build on itself...
Review by MARCUS PITTMAN

Flight 93Click to go to BlogI usually like to start my reviews with some fun play on words, but that seemed entirely inappropriate for
UNITED 93

I usually like to start my reviews with some fun play on words, but that seemed entirely inappropriate for UNITED 93. It’s just too sobering, too serious, too important and too tragic a movie to inject any humor into the situation. Many people aren’t ready to see a depiction of what happened on 9/11/01. One critic said, “it’s the best movie this year that nobody will want to see.” I attended a 4:00pm Friday showing in a fairly small town and the theater was over half full. Perhaps that critic is wrong. Perhaps people do want to see what happened...
Review by MATT KINNE

RVClick to go to Maurice's BlogDon’t call it Robin Williams a comeback ... no, really, don’t.
RV

R.V. is the first Robin Williams vehicle since his “dark Robin” phase (Insomnia, Death to Smoochy, and One Hour Photo) and better a continued lack of a silver screen presence than this footnote in his movie career. Robin Williams movies only come in a few flavors: dramatic (Good Will Hunting), manic (Mrs. Doubtfire)...
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS

RVClick to go to PapaBear's blogI LOVED IT! Not only was RV a very funny movie, but it also had a very deep message for me.
RV

Okay, I guess I have to explain this statement. But first let me tell you one reason I loved it. It was hilariously funny. Robin Williams was at his best. His movie family complimented his wit with their own comedic talent and the Gornicke family played a great straight man for the characters played by Williams’ and his movie family. Laughter constantly filled the theater and you just couldn’t help but roar at the various situations and the one-liners...
Review by PAPABEAR

April 28

AKEELAH AND THE BEEGo to Greg's BlogIt's about competing, competing well, and competing fairly.
AKEELAH AND THE BEE

Keke Plamer is stunningly captivating as a nearly invisible inner-city middle-schooler named Akeelah. When she competes in the school's first spelling bee—and she wins—she catches the attention of a former spelling-bee whiz who's looking for a competitor to coach. Mom's not so thrilled. But the course is set, and it's no surprise that Akeelah makes it all the way to the finals of the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Review by GREG WRIGHT

R.V.Click to go to Michael's blogFun! Fun! Fun!
R.V.

The fun begins when Bob tries to fool his family into an RV trip to Colorado instead of a planned dream trip to Hawaii. He can't bring himself to tell his family the real reason the Hawaii trip is cancelled. His ruse is to sneak off to a business meeting without telling his family—and they should be none the wiser. Right.
Review by MICHAEL SMITH

HARD CANDYClick to go to Michael's blogAn Interview with Ellen Page and Brian Nelson
HARD CANDY FEATURE

A well-developed story is crucial when you write a screenplay, as screen time is limited. The scope of the story is correspondingly limited; the dialogue and plot must say a lot in a compressed timeline. So a lot must be known before you can write the first line. Nelson explained these things to me in the way only a master storyteller can tell them. I was mesmerized.
Feature Article by MICHAEL SMITH

April 27
Flight 93Click to go to David's BlogUNITED 93
Director: Paul Greengrass.
Stars: David Alan Basche, Olivia Thirlby, Liza Colón-Zayas

A real time account of the events on United Flight 93, one of the planes hijacked on 9/11 that crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania when passengers foiled the terrorist plot.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

STICK IT Click to go to David's BlogSTICK IT
Director: Jessica Bendinger.
Stars: Missy Peregrym, Jeff Bridges, Vanessa Lengies.

After a run-in with the law, Haley Graham (Peregrym) is forced to return to the world from which she fled some years ago. Enrolled in an elite gymnastics program run by the legendary Burt Vickerman (Bridges), Haley's rebellious attitude gives way to something that just might be called team spirit.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

AKEELAH AND THE BEEClick to go to David's BlogAKEELAH AND THE BEE
Director: Doug Atchison.
Stars: Angela Bassett, Laurence Fishburne, Keke Palmer.

An inspirational drama, AKEELAH AND THE BEE is the story of Akeelah Anderson, a precocious eleven-year-old girl from south Los Angeles with a gift for words.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

RVClick to go to David's BlogR.V.
Director: Barry Sonnenfeld. Stars: Robin Williams, Cheryl Hines, Kristin Chenoweth.

Bob McNeive (Williams) and his dysfunctional family rent an RV for a roadtrip to the Colorado Rockies, where they encounter a bizarre community of campers.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

April 26
Flight 93Click to go to David's BlogFlight 93
Director: Paul Greengrass.
Stars: David Alan Basche, Olivia Thirlby, Liza Colón-Zayas.

A real time account of the events on United Flight 93, one of the planes hijacked on 9/11 that crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania when passengers foiled the terrorist plot.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

RVFaith in Hollywood:
Up Close with Kristin Chenoweth

Kristin Chenoweth openly shared that she is a person of faith. She also agreed that for this reason it is very, very hard to work in this industry. She says, “The minute you say, ‘I am a Christian’ or ‘I have faith’, people are like ‘Ooh!’ scared.”

RVClick to go to Mike's BlogR.V.
RV is an illustration of what many have become.

We have become so focused on the possessions that we forget about the things that are really important. We have forgotten about the relations between a man and a wife, the joy of tucking your children into bed and giving them a kiss, or even something as simple as playing catch with your son. Instead we are so focused on work, and the “things” we obtain.
--Spiritual Connections by MIKE FURCHES

Sometimes I go to movies just to have fun, not expecting much other than hoping that I have a good time. When I am really having a lucky day, not only will I enjoy the movie I am going to see for fun, but, I’ll also be surprised by having a good time and appreciating the message of the movie. The Benchwarmers this weekend provided such an opportunity.
Review by MIKE FURCHES

SILENT HILLS Click to go to Mike's BlogMany have claimed the Konami game Silent Hill is the scariest role playing game ever.
SILENT HILL

Depending on who you listen to, video games are bringing in more revenues now than movies. Thus, movies over the last few years have as a starting point, video games. From Mortal Combat to lesser known movies like The Mario Brothers, the genera has come around.
--Review by MIKE FURCHES

THE SENTINELClick to go to MICHAEL'S BLOGIs this be the first step in Sutherland’s return to big screen glory?
THE SENTINEL

As a fan of the ultra-addictive show 24, I was excited to see Kiefer Sutherland making a trip to the big screen, playing a role similar to his hard-edged Jack Bauer character. Would the duo of Michael Douglas and Sutherland, with a mix of sexy Eva Longoria thrown in for good measure, capture the expert pacing and energy of the best special agent show on TV?
Review by MICHAEL RAY
TAKE THE LEADClick to go to PapaBear's blogFrom the trailers and commercials alone, you learn everything you need to know about
TAKE THE LEAD

Based on a true story, Take the Lead is meant to be part tale of inspiration and pslitherslitherart fable. I suppose that what rubbed me the wrong way was the way that the movie seemed to treat social issues with a near cavalier lip service. But I digress.
Review by PAPABEAR

SHE'S THE MANClick to go to PapaBear's blogAmanda Bynes is really, seriously, funny.
SHE'S THE MAN

Some of the funniest scenes, as you can imagine, are built upon Viola (played by Amanda Bynes) pretending to be a guy, her brother Sebastian (played James Kirk – no not of the Enterprise). I knew Amanda was a big star on Nicelodeon and I had seen her a couple of times in the past, but had not really taken her very seriously.
Review by PAPABEAR

TAKE THE LEADTim SpanburgI was pleasantly surprised
TAKE THE LEAD

A movie that quite honestly, looked like a cheese-fest when I saw the previews. Dancing? Ballroom dancing? Antonio Banderas? I mean this is the guy who can box and shoot people up with a guitar case gun, but now he is teaching ball room dancing? Disappointing, right? ...
Review by TIM SPANBURG

Tim SpanburgThe perfect robbery has been the idea behind many films.
INSIDE MAN

You can try covering your sins up for as long as you want, but eventually, the smell will catch up to you. The trouble is, when there is not a clear definition of what 'sin' is, then you can smell whatever you want. This quick summary of Inside Man is why I both loved and became frustrated at this movie.
Review by TIM SPANBURG

V FOR VENDETTA Click to go to Mark's BlogV for Vexed by Vociferous Voices
V FOR VENDETTA

What is it that intrigues me about a masked vigilante who tortures young girls and ignites national monuments, as if doing so were just as common as retrieving two-percent milk from the dairy section of one’s local grocery store? Why is it that, weeks after my initial viewing of V for Vendetta, I’m still thinking about the always-smiling anti-hero whose horrific acts are equaled only by his noble character?
Review by MARK STOKES

April 22
SILENT HILLS This film is full of Biblical elements and overtones.
SILENT HILL

In the second scene of the movie we see a billboard outside of a church building that reads, “Corinthians 6:2-3 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? Do you not know that we will judge angels?” This billboard makes three appearances in the film, so it obviously had some significance.
--REVIEW by BRIAN DEDMON

April 21
THE SENTINELClick to go to David's BlogTHE SENTINEL
Director: Clark Johnson.
Stars: Kim Basinger, Michael Douglas, Kiefer Sutherland.

A disgraced special agent (Douglas) works to foil a plot to assassinate the U.S.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

SILENT HILLS Click to go to David's BlogSILENT HILL
Director: Christophe Gans.
Stars: Radha Mitchell, Laurie Holden, Sean Bean.

Unable to accept the doctor's diagnosis that her daughter should be permanently institutionalized for psychiatric care, Rose flees with her child, heading for the abandoned town in search of answers.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

SOMERSAULTClick to go to Darrel's BlogWhat kind of film can win every award that it is eligible for?
SOMERSAULT

In 2004, Somersault won thirteen Australian Film Institute awards, sweeping every category for a non-documentary feature film. Even considering that the competition included only Australian films, that is a pretty impressive record. Now it is coming to the U.S.
Review by DARREL MANSON

HARD CANDYClick to go to Michael's blogHard candy? Really hard!
HARD CANDY

Jeff is a predatory stalker. Hayley is a vigilante. Both can be seen in symbolic terms: we are Jeff, Hayley is our conscience. You can never escape your conscience. It tracks you down, grabs you, and never gives you a moment's peace. My Mom used to always say, "Your sins will find you out." She was right of course.
Review by MICHAEL SMITH

THE NOTORIOUS BETTIE PAGEGo to Greg's BlogManages to celebrate innocent sexuality.
Without ever really showing us any.
THE NOTORIOUS BETTIE PAGE

To be sure, there's plenty of wink-wink and nudge-nudge in Notorious. But writer-director Mary Harron presents such a matter-of-fact portrayal of Page's story that we're also quite confident that there's more to the Hefner worldview than just silk robes and martinis. It's not all merely innocent fun.
Review by GREG WRIGHT

AMERICAN DREAMZClick to go to Jenn's  BlogThere are dreams, and there are Dreamz.
Let's hope we all wake up from this one.
AMERICAN DREAMZ

Weitz's satirical look at current American culture and the obsession with popularity has its humorous moments, but often takes the issues too far. In a sort of live-action Team America style, nearly every demographic is ritually mocked, from wildly popular celebrities to earnest military personnel
Review by JENN WRIGHT

April 13

Scary Movie 4Click to go to David's BlogScary Movie 4
Director: David W. Zucker David Zucker.
Stars: Anna Faris, Regina Hall, Andre Benjamin.

The fourth installment of the comedy series spoofing horror movies, and boy does it have plenty of bad horror movies to spoof!ourth installment of the comedy series spoofing horror movies, and boy does it have plenty of bad horror movies to spoof!
— Video review by DAVID BRUCE

The WildClick to go to David's BlogThe Wild
Director: Steve 'Spaz' Williams.
Stars: Kiefer Sutherland, Eddie Izzard, Joseph Siravo.

A teenage lion is accidentally shipped from the New York Zoo to Africa. Now running free, his zoo pals must put aside their differences to help bring him back.
— Video review by DAVID BRUCE

ATLClick to go to Maurice's BlogA movie trying to be all things to all people
ATL

The problem with ATL boils down to the fact that I’m not sure what kind of movie it wanted to be. A story by Antwone Fisher (yes, that Antwone Fisher), it comes off as a sort of “Roll Bounce in the Hood.” As is so often the case, a voice over is the first sign of lazy story-telling. It’s a slice of life character study filled with a host of characters–like people you know from the neighborhood.
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS

THE BENCHWARMERSClick to go to BlogThe story and gags have too many errors to count.
THE BENCHWARMERS

Why let a three adult man team, play child teams in a legitimate little league tournament? Would Rob Schnieder really avoid his husband responsibilities with a stunning wife played by Molly Sims? Jonathan Heder is in his young 20s compared to the 40-something Schneider and Spade. How can they be childhood friends?
Review by MATT KINNE

Thank You for SmokingClick to go to Darrel's BlogHe's good looking, smooth talking and slicker than silk pajamas on a snake.
THANK YOU FOR SMOKING

Nick Naylor is a tobacco industry lobbyist, he appears on TV shows to say how nice the people are who manufacture these deadly products. He testifies before Congress that science is inconclusive about the health dangers of smoking. He doesn’t lie about much of anything. He misdirects and confuses. He's good looking, smooth talking and slicker than silk pajamas on a snake.
Review by DARREL MANSON

April 11
Click to go to David's BlogICE AGE 2: The MeltdownICE AGE 2: The Meltdown

Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogSLITHER
SLITHER
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogTAKE THE LEAD
TAKE THE LEAD
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogSTAY ALIVE
STAY ALIVE
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogPHAT GIRLZ
PHAT GIRLZ
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogINSIDE MAN
INSIDE MAN
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogFIND ME GUILTY
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogATL
ATL
Video Review
by David Bruce
Click to go to David's BlogBASIC INSTINCT 2
BASIC INSTINCT 2
Video Review
by David Bruce
April 8

Click to go to Narnia News THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE
(DVD, Special Edition)

Narnia's extended footage is being pretty jealously guarded, still locked away in some editing room. This release contains very little hint of what may have been filmed but not included in the theatrical version. But the new featurettes produced for Disc 2 are indeed genuinely new. Even those who have been thoroughly saturated in Narnia's media hype will find things to enjoy and discover.
Review by GREG and JENN WRIGHT

April 7
TAKE THE LEADClick to go to Maurice's BlogFrom the trailers and commercials alone, you learn everything you need to know about
TAKE THE LEAD

Based on a true story, Take the Lead is meant to be part tale of inspiration and pslitherslitherart fable. I suppose that what rubbed me the wrong way was the way that the movie seemed to treat social issues with a near cavalier lip service. But I digress.
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS

SLITHERClick to go to Maurice's Blog “This shit’s about as far from God as shit can get.”
–Mayor Jack MacReady (Gregg Henry)
SLITHER

I can’t believe that I found the Gospel message in this movie. A mix of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, the Evil Dead movies, and any of a number of zombie movies, Slither covers some well-worn territory, yet stands poised to become a cult hit. With a mix of effective action and gross out titillation, it wasn’t a bad little movie.
Review by MAURICE BROADDUS

PHAT GIRLZClick to go to Mike's BlogUnable to accept the love he offers...
PHAT GIRLZ

You will find lurking under the surface a rather touching and heartwarming film. It takes an interesting look at the pain that trying to meet the expectations of our contemporary society can inflict on a person. It questions the criteria we use to examine ourselves and from where we should draw our self-worth.
Review by MIKE BRUNK

TAKE THE LEADGo to Greg's BlogI guess I'm a sucker for schmaltz.
TAKE THE LEAD

It's terribly convenient that all of the kids in detention love music and love to dance—but in the context of this movie, it's not a terrible stretch. Not all of these kids (nor the actors who portray them) are great natural dancers. So there's plenty of room to grow—and grow they must, if they're going to enter the city ballroom competition.
Review by GREG WRIGHT

LONESOME JIMJAMES HARLEMAN BLOG"What kind of love is that?"
LONESOME JIM

Anika knows that love is not a feeling. Part of love may involve feeling, but equally essential components of love are action, choice, discipline, sacrifice, and more. Claiming a love that lacks these qualities is no love at all, but a cultural buzz word that has no efficacy.
Review by JAMES HARLEMAN

THE BENCHWARMERSClick to go to David's BlogTHE BENCHWARMERS
Director: Dennis Dugan. Stars: David Spade, Jon Heder, Rob Schneider


In an attempt to right things from their respective childhoods, Ritchie (Spade), Clark (Heder), and Gus (Schneider) form a three-player baseball team to compete against standard little league squads.
Video review by DAVID BRUCE

April 1

LITTLE MANHATTANClick to go to Kathy's blog LITTLE MANHATTAN (DVD)

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment has hit another home run with Little Manhattan! This film arrives on DVD today and is a must-see for anyone who would like to hear (and try to understand) the inner workings of the ten-year-old male mind.
Review by KATHY BLEDSOE

BOOK REVIEWS
Idealism: The Philosophy of the Matrix (Nonfiction), by Harun Yahya
   —Review by Mike Gunn
Levi's Will (Novel), by W. Dale Cramer
   —Review by Kathy Bledsoe
End of the Spear (Memoir), by Steve Saint
   —Review by Kathy Bledsoe