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"You can't measure the success of a [film] on how many tickets it sells. You can only measure it in how many hearts it changes." Hayao Miyazaki …more »»  
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What’s the deal here?

Have you ever had a blinding flash of clarity about a better life or a better world? A moment where you thought, “Hey, maybe there’s life before death”? It can change you, and it can start with a moment in a movie.

That’s what is about: finding life through film. Whether a film is old or new, we turn things around: We spend less time critiquing a film and more time asking if the film can critique us. With any film, we:

  • Focus first on how a film embodies the best in life — good, true, beautiful things — even if its filmcraft falls short.
  • Tone down (but don’t ignore) our critique of a film’s failings.
  • Allow a film to show ugly sides of life if, by doing so, it might help us see the best in life more clearly.

Why? Because life is better when the world’s a better place, and that starts with us. Whether on DVD or in a theater, we have a good time with film and we want movies to help us get better. Other bits you’ll find on the site:




A angle on film is about how we change from the inside out and how film can help us do that. It works like this:

Change from the inside out

  • Heart. On the inside, in our hearts, is who we really are. A film can show us the best things in life and move us toward loving them.
  • Beauty. Our hearts move with Beauty — good, true, pleasing things. A film can help us feel the joy of real Beauty or the pain of Beauty's absence.
  • Love. As a film moves us toward Beauty, we can find and live love and relationship with those around us.

Be thoughtful about film

  • Find a film's heart. Seeing a film, we want more than the fun of the moment. We also want the film's heart to move us toward the best in life.
  • Take care with content. We see films that dive deep into ugly issues of this life, and thus show ugly things, but we don't want to enjoy ugly content for its own sake.
  • Consider what to watch. We see a broad range of films, yet we aim to choose better films that enrich our lives with Beauty in the moment and that also help us get better.

I hope you'll join us.

Randy Heffner
organizer

Talk about great films: Wit (2001)

Before viewing talk
In the context of a life and death scenario, Wit intensely explores issues of life before death by juxtaposing the emotional sterility of the typical ...more »»
After viewing talk
Having seen Wit, I want to take life more seriously. What I mean is that I want to take living life fully more seriously. I tend to think that living seriously … more »»
 
…more »»  

Reviews and stuff on other interesting film sites



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Larry Crowne
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Cars 2
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The Green Lantern
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Super 8
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In a summer unfortunately glutted with superhero movies, every one an origins story, X-Men: First Class not only eclipses its…

The Tree of Life
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Kung Fu Panda 2 is disappointing only because it is not the original Kung Fu Panda, a rare animated action-packed adventure that…

The Hangover: Part II
To dispense with a lengthy plot synopsis for The Hangover: Part II would be a profound waste of the time it would take me to write…

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Fan fiction is an awkward literary subset written not by the original creator of a given work, but rather by fans. Nearly always…

Bridesmaids
It is both artistically dishonest and embarrassingly naive to grant the status of “classic” to something only newly born.…

Priest
Priest is the sort of movie you walk into knowing full well its IQ is significantly less than the bucket of popcorn balanced in…

Thor
The problem with the current crop of superhero movies is that once you’ve exhausted the A-list (Superman, Spider-Man, Batman),…

Fast Five
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Updated: 15 Aug 2013, 06:00 UTC

 


‘Gleason’ and two other summer movies about fathers: Hunt for the Wilderpeople & Captain Fantastic
  Fathers are a theme that keeps emerging in this summer’s movies. We always complain about how women are portrayed…

‘The Innocents’ tells a story of trauma, grace
At last, the long night of World War II is over in Europe, but for a Benedictine monastery of nuns in northern Poland, the nightmare…

‘Thelma & Louise’ 25 years later still poses a challenge to male entitlement
I first saw “Thelma and Louise” while studying for a master’s in education in media studies in London in 1995.…

RISEN now available on DVD, Blu-Ray. digital
RISEN is now available on DVD, Blu-ray, digital, etc. Here’s a link to the cast talking about meeting the Pope as well as…

‘The Angry Birds Movie’ is a volatile pun fest
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Stories that invite us to be cultural mystics
After more than six decades of life, I am still startled by the profound empathy for humanity often revealed in stories told through…

Pope Francis invites us to reflect mercy in our speech and in Tweets for World Communications Day 2016
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8 films and mini-series to see before you vote
My ears perked up back in March when Texas Sen. Ted Cruz defended his wife, Heidi, after Donald Trump threatened to “spill…

Cast of RISEN reacts to meeting Pope Francis ahead of May release of DVD
The DVD is now available! The film RISEN, that I reviewed in February as a “moving contribution to the canon of biblical…

TCM Classic Film Festival April 28-May 1, 2016 Hollywood
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Updated: 30 Jul 2016, 22:00 UTC