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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

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 »»  

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Hard To Be A God (German, 2014)
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The Babadook (Kent, 2014)
Amelia is having a nightmare, and first time director Jennifer Kent begins her psychological horror film, The Babadook, by placing…

Selma (DuVernay, 2014)
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The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (Takahata, 2014)
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A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night (Amirpour, 2014 – SLIFF, 2014)
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Norte, The End of History (Diaz, 2013)
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Updated: 25 Apr 2015, 14:00 UTC


‘Woman in Gold’ is a first-rate detective story that unravels a decades-old mystery
“Woman in Gold” is a David-and-Goliath story. When the sister of Maria Altmann (Helen Mirren) dies in Los Angeles,…

‘A.D. The Bible Continues’ kicks off with a familiar story
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‘METALHEAD’ is a Good Friday film with an Easter ending
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‘Killing Jesus’ is remarkable but doesn’t give the whole picture
8 p.m./7 p.m. Central, Sunday, March 29 National Geographic Channel   “Killing Jesus” airs Sunday on the National…

2015 Oscar nominees default to (mostly white) men
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Sr. Rose to present first Razzie “Redemption” Award!
I have to say, it was a surprise to be asked! Check the website. There is still time to vote for who should be redeemed!  …

‘Selma’ shows how nonviolence can achieve social change
On July 2, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law. It outlawed all discrimination in the United States…

‘The Railway Man’ is a powerful story of a wounded soul
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‘Fury’ fuels the ‘war is hell’ mentality without shining fresh light on it
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‘The Decent One’: Documentary on Himmler a compelling contribution to Holocaust filmography
  Heinrich Himmler — the Nazi Gestapo chief, head of the German police in the Third Reich, head of the Reich Main Security…

Updated: 25 Apr 2015, 14:00 UTC