HAL Unplugged: Fear, Terror, and Salvation in Science Fiction

By |2019-11-21T15:21:51-06:00November 28th, 2019|Categories: Culture, Film, Modernity, Paul Krause, Science, Senior Contributors, Technology|

Deep in the wellspring of science fiction is the ongoing struggle between mechanical monsters and holistic heroes. From bleak and dour tales of extermination and human destruction, to optimistic but nevertheless struggling and pathological battles to save life, science fiction has been battling with our modern monsters from the id boiling up inside of [...]

A Thanksgiving Tale of Redemption: “Planes, Trains and Automobiles”

By |2019-11-28T19:29:02-06:00November 27th, 2019|Categories: Audio/Video, Film, Stephen M. Klugewicz, Thanksgiving, Timeless Essays|

A lighthearted romp at first blush, “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” yet tells the story of how the example of simple goodness can be transformational… Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the opportunity to join Stephen Klugewicz, as he discusses the humanity of the 1980s John Hughes comedy, Planes, Trains and Automobiles.—W. [...]

Triumph: How Two Dutch Girls Survived World War II

By |2020-06-05T14:04:53-05:00November 26th, 2019|Categories: Books, Film, Michael De Sapio, World War II|

In "Dutch Girl," Robert Matzen describes how the young Audrey Hepburn survived both famine and fighting in World War II. But what brings this history home for me personally is the connection with a third woman, less well-known, who also lived in Holland during those times. I feel a special interest in her story since [...]

Marilyn Monroe and the Mother Goddess

By |2019-11-20T12:22:52-06:00November 22nd, 2019|Categories: Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Film, Modernity, Morality, Senior Contributors|

Marilyn Monroe was the American version of the great mother goddess—our Diana, Astarte, Ishtar, Isis. But for the pagan, the Mother Goddess stood not only for sex, but also for life, fertility, prosperity, and all things abundant. Being an American and living on the precipice of the sexual revolution, Marilyn was the icon and [...]

The Silent Witness of “Metropolis”

By |2019-11-22T02:36:59-06:00November 21st, 2019|Categories: Christianity, Culture, Dystopia, Film, Modernity, Religion|

A remnant from the late ‘20s, “Metropolis” has come into the light once again and in a more complete way. While the industrial environment and modern work have changed, the concern for social justice and questions about technology are just as intense as they were when the film premiered. In a search for movies [...]

The “Confessions” of Bruce Springsteen: “Western Stars,” the Film

By |2019-11-14T13:16:29-06:00October 31st, 2019|Categories: Bruce Springsteen, Film, Music, Stephen M. Klugewicz|

Bruce Springsteen's unrivaled stage presence comes across remarkably well in the film "Western Stars," as he performs his recent album in its entirety. But it is the brief, meditative, and confessional vignettes he uses to introduce each song that reveal just how much the entire album serves as his own version of St. Augustine's "Confessions." [...]

Curses and Magic in the “Night of the Demon”

By |2019-10-30T17:32:43-05:00October 30th, 2019|Categories: C.S. Lewis, Christian Humanism, Culture, Fiction, Film, Literature|

Like the best horror tales, the “Night of the Demon” came back from the “dead.” This was as a result of a late-night slot for cult movies on British television in the late 1980s. Continuing to this day, the film has attracted ever-increasing praise from critics and found an ever-more appreciative audience. It seems [...]

Revisiting “The Return of the King”

By |2019-10-05T22:21:17-05:00October 5th, 2019|Categories: Books, Culture, Film, J.R.R. Tolkien, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Senior Contributors, Uncategorized|

I’ve just completed the sixteen-hour marathon, run over three consecutive Tuesday evenings at a friend’s house, watching all three extended editions of Peter Jackson’s movie magnum opus, The Lord of the Rings. I’ve already shared my impressions of watching The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers for the first time in possibly [...]

Revisiting “The Fellowship of the Ring”

By |2019-10-04T12:56:45-05:00September 28th, 2019|Categories: Books, Culture, Film, J.R.R. Tolkien, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Senior Contributors|

As I pondered the artistic license that Peter Jackson had granted himself in one of the most important scenes from J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Fellowship of the Ring, I realized that a film adaptation of a literary work should not be expected to follow the literal letter of the original but should seek faithfully to [...]

Revisiting “The Two Towers”

By |2019-10-05T09:03:45-05:00September 21st, 2019|Categories: Books, Culture, Film, J.R.R. Tolkien, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Senior Contributors|

I’ve just enjoyed the second of the three movie nights at a friend’s house watching the full extended editions of Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings. As I stated in my essay describing my experience of watching The Fellowship of the Ring for the first time in many years, it’s intriguing to see [...]

“Secrets of Blackmoor: The True History of Dungeons & Dragons”

By |2019-09-15T15:14:12-05:00September 13th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Culture, Film, Senior Contributors|

A fascinating new documentary, "Secrets of Blackmoor" tells the story of the inventors of "Dungeons & Dragons," the role-playing phenomenon that transformed gaming into something organic, non-mechanical, and deeply imaginative. When the fantasy-role playing game Dungeons & Dragons first appeared in 1974 as a full product, it listed two authors: Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson. [...]

The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful

By |2019-08-02T11:26:25-05:00July 27th, 2019|Categories: Beauty, Christianity, Culture, Film, Joseph Pearce, Senior Contributors, Truth|

The more that Christ is present in the soul of a culture or society, the more will such a society or culture truly reflect the goodness, truth, and beauty of His image. We can see the very pattern of history as a tapestry, time-stitched and weird-woven, of varying threads which are good, bad, or [...]

Downton Abbey and the Catholic Church

By |2019-06-29T23:27:32-05:00June 29th, 2019|Categories: Catholicism, Christianity, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Film, Senior Contributors|

Like the Catholic Church, Downton Abbey is full of treasures. It is a splendid old mansion with many rooms, and did not our Lord himself say that “in my Father’s house are many rooms?” Like the Church it is a place of timeless wonder, splendor, beauty, and truth. Various metaphors for the Catholic Church [...]