Books added to in June 2016

Cover for Reading the Gospels in the Dark: Portrayals of Jesus in FilmIn the month of June 2016 I added these 22 books to that discusses aspects of film/TV and religion. About half of them are from the last 12 months, and the rest is from earlier

  1. Baring Our Souls: TV Talk Shows and the Religion of Recovery (1999) by Kathleen S. LowneyBuy
  2. Bigger than Ben-Hur: The Book, Its Adaptations, and Their Audiences (2016) by Barbara Ryan, Milette Shamir Buy
  3. Christ and Pop Culture Goes to the Movies: 2015 (2016) by Wade Bearden, Kevin McLenithan Buy
  4. Cinema and Sacrifice (2015) by Costica Bradatan, Camil Constantin UngureanuBuy
  5. Cinematic Savior: Hollywood’s Making of the American Christ (2006) by Stephenson Humphries-BrooksBuy
  6. Film, Faith, and Cultural Conflict: The Case of Martin Scorsese’s The Last Temptation of Christ (2003) by Thomas Robin RileyBuy
  7. The Holy Fool in European Cinema (2016) by Alina G. BirzacheBuy
  8. Imag(in)ing Otherness: Filmic Visions of Living Together (1999) by S. Brent Plate, David JasperBuy
  9. Jesus Christ Movie Star (2000) by Steven Lloyd TeelBuy
  10. Jesus Christ, Movie Star (2015) by Edward N. McNulty, Ken ChitwoodBuy
  11. Jesus, the Gospels, and Cinematic Imagination: A Handbook to Jesus on DVD (2007) by Jeffrey L. Staley, Richard WalshBuy
  12. Media, Culture, and the Religious Right (1998) by Linda Kintz, Julia LesageBuy
  13. Reading the Gospels in the Dark: Portrayals of Jesus in Film (2003) by Richard WalshBuy
  14. Savior on the Silver Screen (1999) by Richard C Stern, Clayton N Jefford Buy
  15. Seeing is Believing: Visions of Life Through Film (1998) by Robert BenneBuy
  16. Shining Glory: Theological Reflections on Terrence Malicks Tree of Life (2013) by Peter J. LeithartBuy
  17. Star Trek and Sacred Ground: Explorations of Star Trek, Religion, and American Culture (1999) by Jennifer E. Porter, Darcee L. McLarenBuy
  18. A Substitute for God: Religion and Film (2015) by Mark RyanBuy
  19. Tarantino And Theology (2015) by Jonathan Walls, Jerry WallsBuy

Articles added to in June 2016

In the month of June 2016 I added this 42 articles to that discusses aspects of film/TV and religion. About half of them are from the last 12 months, but the rest is from the 1980’s

  1. “The Apostle”: An Interview with Robert Duvall by Bill Blizek and Ronald Burke (1998-04)
  2. The Caucasianization of Jesus: Hollywood Transforming Christianity into a Racially Hierarchical Discourse by Catherine Jones, Atsushi Tajima (2015-11)
  3. Contemporary Films and Religious Exploration: An Opportunity for Religious Education. Part 1: Foundational Questions. by Pamela P. Mitchell Legg (1996-09)
  4. Contemporary Films and Religious Exploration: An Opportunity for Religious Education. Part II: How to Engage in Conversation with Film. by Pamela P. Mitchell Legg (1997-11)
  5. The End of Desire: Theologies of Eros in The Song of Songs and Breaking the Waves by Kyle Keefer and Tod Linafelt (1998-04)
  6. “The Fairy Tale is True”: Social Technologies of the Religious Supernatural in Film and New Media by Diana Walsh Pasulka (2016-04)
  7. Frum with Benefits: Israeli Television, Globalization, and Srugim’s American Appeal by Shayna Weiss (2016-04)
  8. Has Hollywood finally found god? by Tim Stanley (2016-04)
  9. “Holocaust Laughter”? A German response to Punch Me In the Stomach by Tania Oldenhage (1997-10)
  10. Images of God in the Movies by Andrew M. Greeley (1997-04)
  11. The Influence of Bollywood Films on Punjabi Sikh Youths’ Perception of Their Religious Identity by Ashwinder Kaur a/p Gurbanjan Singh (2015-12)
  12. Islamic Positivism and Scientific Truth: Qur’an and Archeology in a Creationist Documentary Film by Baudouin Dupret, Clémentine Gutron (2016-04)
  13. The Jesus Film: Between Global Christianization and World Christianity by Colin H. Yuckman (2015-12)
  14. Keeping the Faith: Religious moviegoers drive demand for authenticity by Andreas Fuchs (2016-03)
  15. Kierkegaard at Babette’s Feast: The Return to the Finite by Jean Schuler (1997-10)
  16. “Love Everything” Cinema and Belief in Malick’s The Tree of Life by Robert Sinnerbrink (2016-02)
  17. Mountains, monks and mandalas: ‘Kundun’ and ‘Seven Years in Tibet.’ by Mark Abramson (1998-07)
  18. Mozart & Salieri, Cain & Abel: A Cinematic Transformation of Genesis 4 by Gregory Allen Robbins (1997-04)
  19. The Mutated Spirit: The Hollywood Zombie as Psychopomp by Keira McKenzie (2011-09)
  20. On Human Nature in the Thought of Muhyiddin Ibn’ Arabi and the Western Tradition Within the Context of the Film The Silence of the Lambs by Ridade Öztürk (2016-01)
  21. Orientalist Commercializations: Tibetan Buddhism in American Popular Film by Eve L. Mullen (1998-10)
  22. Perception and Reaction: The Representation of the Shari’a in Nollywood and Kanywood Films by Nasiru Wada Khalil (2016-04)
  23. Picturing the Way in Bae Yong-kyun’s Why Has Bodhidharma Left for the East? by Michael L. Gillespie (1997-04)
  24. Problematizing the Human-Technology Relationship through Techno-Spiritual Myths Presented in The Machine, Transcendence and Her by Heidi A. Campbell (2016-01)
  25. The Rapture: A Challenging Vision of Horror by Carl Greiner (1997-04)
  26. Redressing Jewish Difference in Tania Modleski’s “Cinema and the Dark Continent” by Laura Levitt (1997-10)
  27. Religion, Blasphemy, and Tradition in the Films of Lucio Fulci by James Reitter (2011-09)
  28. Religion, Theology and Film in a Postmodern Age: A Response to John Lyden by Clive Marsh (1998-04)
  29. Rivette’s The Nun: Religion between Sadism and Masochism by Paolo Stellino, Claudio Rozzoni (2016-01)
  30. Sacred Time and Ritualistic Behavior at Harry Potter Book Releases and Film Premieres by Tyler Dukes (2016-04)
  31. The scientist as pioneer hero: Hollywood’s mythological reconciliations in twister and contact by Geoff King (1999-07)
  32. The Shaping Influence of Film and Television on the Spirituality and Identity of Children and Adolescents: an educational response—part 3 by Graham Rossiter (1999-11)
  33. Show Faith in Moviegoers: Devout audiences respond to unprecedented range of films by Andreas Fuchs (2016-05)
  34. Spirited publics? Post-secularism, enchantment and enterprise on Indian television by Lewis (2016-05)
  35. Thou Shalt Kill . . . Carefully: Secular Religion, the Immanent Frame, and Showtime’s Dexter by Matthew Pittman (2015-11)
  36. “The Ties That Bind and Bless the Soul”: Grace and Noir in Schrader’s Light Sleeper by Jason Ambrosiano (1998-10)
  37. “Time Is a Flat Circle”: True Detective and the Specter of Moral Panic in American Pop Culture by Joseph P. Laycock (2015-11)
  38. To Commend or To Critique? The Question of Religion and Film Studies by John Lyden (1997-10)
  39. “A ton of faith in science!” nature and role of assumptions in, and ideas about, science and epistemology generated upon watching a sci-fi film by John Y. Myers and Fouad Abd-El-Khalick (2016-04)
  40. Transgressing Goodness in Breaking the Waves by Irena S. M. Makarushka (1998-04)
  41. Unreeled Presence: The Film Screen as Altar by John Matturri (1988-02)
  42. Visions of the End. Secular Apocalypse in Recent Hollywood Film by Conrad Ostwalt (1998-04)

Recommended short: Open My Eyes

Open My Eyes from Eli Daughdrill on Vimeo.

Chris, a devout fundamentalist Christian, struggles with his faith after the sudden death of his son.

Official Selection, LA Shorts 2015
Chris: Tony Carreiro
Writer/Director: Eli Daughdrill
Executive Producer: Mike S Ryan
Producers: Eli Daughdrill & Nancy Bevins
Cinematography: Charles Swanson
Music: Linus Lau
Editing: Adam Burr
The short’s IMDB page

My take: This well done 15 minute long short sends a strong, clear message with the help of a few straightforward metaphors. The main, and only, character struggles with the question of to what degree parents are responsible for their children’s action. And how do our teachings, values and lifestyle affect them. I particularly liked that this was done non-verbally. Not a single word was uttered aloud in the film. Even letters on screen were sparsely used. E.g. when the father thumbs through his well-read and heavily highlighted Bible you cannot actually read what section he is in.

The rest contains spoilers. It is unclear whether the son committed suicide or not, but it is strongly suggested. The two important texts showing up in the movie: the name and date on his tombstone and the words in his notebook: “My mind is poisoned”. (You can also read the names of the independent bands whose music he listened to on the posters that the father is tearing down from the wall of his room, but they just provide context for the son lives and not as essential to the plot.) I enjoyed the two symbolic actions in the first half of the movie, that gained their significance through the second half. Clearing a  channel from the debris that the watered piled up clearly intended to suggest, that ones mind needs to be cleared to enable the flow of thoughts and emotions. Fixing the car, that didn’t start first, connects to this line of thought by expressing the idea that once your mind is cleared it needs to be maintained and needs a spark to get started again. All of the above is intended to question whether strong Christian values allow clear thinking and has enough sparks to make one keep going in such situation. You decide, as the film doesn’t do it for you.

Books added to in May 2016

Cover for Sacred Space: The Quest for Transcendence in Science Fiction Film and TelevisionIn the month of May 2016 I added these 22 books to that discusses aspects of film/TV and religion. About half of them are from the last 12 months, and the rest is from earlier

  1. The Bible in Motion: A Handbook of the Bible and Its Reception in Film (2016) by Rhonda Burnette-BletschBuy
  2. Coen: Framing Religion in Amoral Order (2016) by Elijah Siegler Buy
  3. Esoteric Hollywood: Sex, Cults and Symbols in Film (2016) by Jay DyerBuy
  4. Faith, Family, Film: A Teacher’s Trek (2016) by Fred EichelmanBuy
  5. Hollywood Holyland: The Filming and Scoring of The Greatest Story Ever Told (1992) by Ken DarbyBuy
  6. I Just Saw Jesus: The JESUS Film – From Vision, to Reality, to the Unimaginable (2016) by Paul Eshleman Buy
  7. Jean-Luc Godard’s Hail Mary: Women and the Sacred in Film (1993) by Maryel Buy
  8. Jero Tapakan: Balinese Healer: An Ethnographic Film Monograph (1996) by Linda Connor, Patsy Asch, Timothy AschBuy
  9. Light Shining in a Dark Place: Discovering Theology through Film (2012) by Jeff SellarsBuy
  10. Love in the Afterlife: Underground Religion at the Movies (2016) by Richard StrinerBuy
  11. Of Elephants and Toothaches: Ethics, Politics, and Religion in Krzysztof Kieslowski’s ‘Decalogue’ (2016) by Eva Badowska, Francesca ParmeggianiBuy
  12. Profane Parables: Film and the American Dream (2016) by Matthew S. RindgeBuy
  13. Redeeming Television: How TV Changes Christians–how Christians Can Change TV (1992) by Quentin J. SchultzeBuy
  14. Religion and Prime Time Television (1997) by Michael SumanBuy
  15. Religion Vs. Television: Competitors in Cultural Context (1996) by Jay NewmanBuy
  16. Religious Television: Controversies and Conclusions (1990) by Robert Abelman, Stewart M. HooverBuy
  17. Sacred Space: The Quest for Transcendence in Science Fiction Film and Television (2010) by Douglas E. CowanBuy
  18. The Silents of Jesus in the Cinema (1897-1927) (2016) by David ShepherdBuy
  19. Through a Lens Darkly: Tracing Redemption in Film (2015) by Marjorie Hewitt SuchockiBuy
  20. Watching TV Religiously: Television and Theology in Dialogue (2016) by Kutter Callaway, Dean BataliBuy
  21. The Way: A Cinematic Retreat Guide (2016) by Rose PacatteBuy
  22. Westernized Visual Representation of Jesus and the Construction of Religious Meanings (2015) by Dong Hwan KwonBuy

Articles added to in May 2016

In the month of May 2016 I added this 44 articles to that discusses aspects of film/TV and religion. About half of them are from the last 12 months, but the rest is from the 1990’s

  1. Acts of God: Film, Religion, and FX by Judith Wilt (1997-01)
  2. “Aftertones of Infinity”: Biblical and Darwinian Evocations in Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life and To the Wonder by Gregory Allen Robbins (2016-01)
  3. Agonizing Transitions and Turning Away from God in Two Tunisian Movies by Imen Yacoubi (2016-01)
  4. “As We See, So We Learn”: Doctor Who as Religious Education by Owen D. Edwards (2015-12)
  5. Babette’s Feast: A Religious Film by Wendy M. Wright (1997-10)
  6. The Books of the films: Trends in religious film-analysis by Steve Nolan (1998-03)
  7. Buddha found and lost in the Chinese nation of ‘Diversity in Unity’: Pema Tseden’s films as a Buddhist mode of reflexivity
    by Kwai-Cheung Loa (2016-04)
  8. Contending for Faith: Analyzing The Assault On Faith In The Truman Show And The Ladykillers by Timothy J. Etherington (2004-12)
  9. Different Images of God: Theological-aesthetical Evaluation of Films by Andrey Zvyagintsev and Pavel Lungin by Denys Kondyuk (2016-01)
  10. Doctor Who and the Iconographic Search for an Ecstatic Human Religious Experience by Stacy Embry (2015-12)
  11. Dr. King and the Image of God: A Theology of Voting Rights in Ava DuVernay’s Selma by Marcos Norris (2016-04)
  12. Enlightenments: The Interpretation of Tibetan Buddhism on Screen by Andronika M. Martonova (2016-01)
  13. The Eyes Have it: Film, Editing, and Postmodern Theological Hermeneutics by James M. Hansen (2016-04)
  14. Fetish, Sacrifice and Tragic Freedom in the Dardenne Brothers’ La Promesse by Andrew Small (2016-04)
  15. From Marseille to Mecca: Reconciling the Secular and the Religious in Le grand voyage (The Big Trip) (2004) by Yahya Laayouni (2016-04)
  16. “He who kills the body, kills the soul that inhabits it”: Feminist Filmmaking, Religion, and Spiritual Identification in Vision by Carl Laamanen (2016-04)
  17. Into the Arms of Dr Who: Implicit Religion and a Cowboy’s Redemption by William Keenan (2015-12)
  18. Islam, animation, and money: The reception of Disney’s Aladdin in Southeast Asia. by Timothy R. White, J. Emmett Winn (1999-12)
  19. Jesus in Film: Hollywood Perspectives on the Jewishness of Jesus by Adele Reinhartz (1998-10)
  20. Madness, Otherness and Transformation: Exploring Religion in Nordic Crime Films by Sofia Sjö (2016-01)
  21. Madonnas in Our Midst: Representations of Women Religious in Hollywood Film by MaryAnn Janosik (1997-07)
  22. The Medium and the Spirit: On Teaching Religion and Film by Torey L. Lightcap (1997-03)
  23. The Messianic Figure in Film: Christology Beyond the Biblical Epic by Matthew McEver (1998-10)
  24. MOVIES: Is God Really Dead in Beverly Hills? Religion and the Movies by Stanley Rothman (1996-04)
  25. “Noah’s Beasts Were the Stars”: Arthur Melbourne Cooper’s Noah’s Ark (1909) by David Shepherd (2016-01)
  26. Pasolini on Terra Sancta : Towards a Theology of Film by Noa Steimatsky (1998-04)
  27. Redeemed in Blood: The Sacramental Universe of Martin Scorsese by Richard A. Blake S.J. (1996-01)
  28. Redescribing “Religion and …” Film: Teaching the Insider/Outsider Problem by Russell T. McCutcheon (1998-06)
  29. Rejecting the Ethnic Community in Little Caesar, The Public Enemy, and Scarface by Bryan Mead (2016-04)
  30. Religious conflict, popular culture and the troubled spectators of recent Indian film by Anthony R. Guneratne (1997-04)
  31. Religious Faith and Science in Contact by Bryan P. Stone (1998-10)
  32. The Roles Of Violence in Recent Biblical Cinema: The Passion, Noah, And Exodus: Gods And Kings by Kevin M. McGeough (2016-04)
  33. Screenwriters as Theologians: Doctor Who’s Scope for Theological Exploration
    by Caroline Symcox (2015-12)
  34. Seeing the Light, Hearing the Call: Women Religious as Spectators and Subjects of Popular Nun Films by Maureen A. Sabine (2016-04)
  35. Spirits and Ceremonies: How to Construct Religious Experience in Documentary Film by Jouko Aaltonen (2016-01)
  36. Star Trek and theology by Jolyon Mitchell (1998-05)
  37. Suffering and Soul-Making in Disney/Pixar’s Inside Out by Bertha A. Manninen Ph.D. (2016-04)
  38. Tarkovsky’s Sacrifice: Between Nietzsche and Christ by Frank Bosman (2014-11)
  39. Teaching Religion and Film by Paul V. M. Flesher, Robert Torry (1998-12)
  40. That unbearable recurring apocalytic nightmare : crisis and apocalyptic visions in British film, 1987-1994 by Anthony John Kinik, (1997-10)
  41. The Truth About Inherit the Wind by Carol Iannone (1997-02)
  42. Various Representations of Jews in Turkish Cinema by Melih Çoban (2016-01)
  43. Word and Image: Burgess, Zeffirelli, and Jesus the Man of Nazareth by Graham Holderness (2008-11)
  44. The Word Made Cinematic: The Representation of Jesus in Cinema by Gregory Kahlil Kareem Alleen (2008-06)

Articles added to in April 2016

In the month of April 2016 I added this 42 articles to that discusses aspects of film/TV and religion. About half of them are from the last 12 months, but the rest is from the 1980’s

  1. Allegory and Ambiguity in the Films of Majid Majidi: A Theodicy of Meaning by Cyrus Ali Zargar (2016-01)
  2. “Can We Laugh at God?”: Apocalyptic Comedy in Film by Robert Lamm (1991-06)
  3. The Catholic Imagination in Popular Film & Television by Ingrid Shafer (1991-08)
  4. Doctor Who and Immortality: Influence of Christian and Buddhist Ethics by Leena Vuolteenaho (2015-12)
  5. Eros and Contemplation: The Catholic Vision of Terrence Malick’s To the Wonder by Kathleen E. Urda (2016-01)
  6. Examining the Critical Role American Popular Film Continues to Play in Maintaining the Muslim Terrorist Image, Post 9/11 by Rubina Ramji (2016-01)
  7. Film and the Sacred by Joseph Cunneen (1993-04)
  8. Filmed ‘Not During the Sabbath’: The Israeli Haredi Minority through the Camera’s Lens by Yohai Hakak (2016-03)
  9. Films, Values, Absolutes: Why Theological Readings of Films are Morally and Politically Essential by Clive Marsh (2016-01)
  10. God never dies’: Buñuel and Catholicism by Michael Wood (1993-02)
  11. A God Who Plays it by Ear 5 Metaphors for God in Recent Films by Andrew Greeley (1991-08)
  12. God’s Law and the Wide Screen: The Ten Commandments as Cold War “Epic” by Alan Nadel (1993-05)
  13. God’s Middle Children Metaphysical Rebellion in Chuck Palahniuk’s Fight Club by Justin Garrison (2013-08)
  14. Hinduism and Its Others in Bollywood Film of the 2000s by Diana Dimitrova (2016-01)
  15. Historical figures in film: the celluloid Christ by Sarah Noah (1993-05)
  16. Historical Film and Hindu–Muslim Relations in Post-Hindutva India: The Case of Jodhaa Akbar by Raita Merivirta (2016-03)
  17. Hollywood, Main Street, and the Church: Trying to Censor the Movies Before the Production Code by Francis G. Couvares (1992-12)
  18. Impact of Television Advertisement on Consumer. Buying Behavior: The Moderating Role of. Religiosity in the context of Pakistan by Bushra Anjum, Attiya Irum (2015-12)
  19. Jesus and the Movies by John Klukach (1991-02)
  20. Jung and The Godfather movies : analyzing film from an archetypal perspective by Joseph Broda (1994-06)
  21. “The Last Temptation of Christ” et l’« affaire » Scorsese by André Muraire (1992-05)
  22. Mary Magdalene and the Politics of Public Memory: Interrogating The Da Vinci Code by Tammie M. Kennedy (2012-08)
  23. Movie stars and Islamic moralism in Egypt by Lila Abu-Lughod (1995-04)
  24. Nigerian Audiences’ Perception of Pentecostal Churches’ Ownership of Satellite Television Channels by Paul Martin Obayi, Ph.D and Ignatius Obiorah Edogor (2016-03)
  25. Philippine Muslims on Screen: From Villains to Heroes by Vivienne Angeles (2016-01)
  26. The Priests of Cyborg by Peter C. Reynolds (1993-07)
  27. The Qur’anic Epic in Iranian Cinema by Nacim Pak-Shiraz (2016-01)
  28. “Raiders of the Lost Ark”: Totem and Taboo by Andrew Gordon (1991-10)
  29. Religious and National Identity in My Name is Khan by Kathleen M. Erndl (2016-01)
  30. The religious dimension of cinematographical consciousness in postmodern culture by Sylvain De Bleeckere (1994-05)
  31. Rewriting God’s Plot: Ingmar Bergmann and Feminine Narrative by Mark B. Sandberg (1991-11)
  32. The Rise and Fall of American Televangelism by Jeffrey K. Hadden (1993-05)
  33. Sacred Women in Coptic Cinema: Between Faith and Resistance by Lise Paulsen Galal (2009-04)
  34. SDA Youth and the Movies: An Analysis of the Church’s Current Message by Brenda Keller (1993-04)
  35. The Seal of the Confessional: Robert Lepage’s Le Confessionnal in Social and Cultural Context by Adele Reinhartz (2016-01)
  36. The spoken and unspoken nature of child abuse in the miniseries Devil’s Playground: The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, the Catholic Church and television drama in Australia by Terrie Waddell, Timothy W Jones (2016-03)
  37. Star Trek Fandom as a Religious Phenomenon by Michael Jindra (1994-06)
  38. Televising religion: A study of Sathya Sai Baba’s funeral broadcast in Gangtok, India by Manoj Kumar Das (2015-12)
  39. Television and Evangelism: A Cautionary Tale by Angela Tilby (1991-06)
  40. Time the Redeemer: Time as an Object of Cinema in a Post-Metaphysical Age by Greg Watkins (2016-01)
  41. Tracking the Fallen Apple: Ineffability, Religious Tropes, and Existential Despair in Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Once Upon a Time in Anatolia by Joseph Kickasola (2016-01)
  42. Watching Movies in the Name of the Lord: Thoughts on Analyzing Christian Film Criticism by James Y. Trammell (2012-08)

Books added to in April 2016

Sacred Terror: Religion and Horror on the Silver Screen (2008) by Douglas E. CowanIn the month of April 2016 I added this 21 books to that discusses aspects of film/TV and religion. About half of them are from the last 12 months, and the rest is from tearlier

  1. Archetypes in Japanese Film: The Sociopolitical and Religious Significance of the Principal Heroes and Heroines (1989) by Gregory BarrettBuy
  2. Biblical Epics: Sacred Narrative in the Hollywood Cinema (1993) by Bruce Babington, Peter William EvansBuy
  3. Black Magic Woman and Narrative Film: Race, Sex and Afro-Religiosity (2015) by Montré Aza MissouriBuy
  4. Blessed are the Eyes that Catch Divine Whispering …: Silence and Religion in Film (2015) by Freek L. Bakker, Mathilde van Dijk, Leo van der Tuin, Marjeet VerbeekBuy
  5. Cinema of the Occult: New Age, Satanism, Wicca, and Spiritualism in Film (2008) by Carrol Lee FryBuy
  6. Discovering World Religions at 24 Frames Per Second (2008) by Julien R. FieldingBuy
  7. Epic Sound: Music in Postwar Hollywood Biblical Films (2014) by Stephen C. MeyerBuy
  8. Faith and Spirituality in Masters of World Cinema, Volume III (2015) by Kenneth R. Morefield, Nicholas S. OlsonBuy
  9. Hermeneutic Humility and the Political Theology of Cinema: Blind Paul (2016) by Sean DesiletsBuy
  10. Hollywood Biblical Epics: Camp Spectacle and Queer Style from the Silent Era to the Modern Day (2015) by Richard LindsayBuy
  11. Hollywood Under Siege: Martin Scorsese, the Religious Right, and the Culture Wars (2008) by Thomas LindlofBuy
  12. Homiletic: Moves and Structures (1987) by David G. ButtrickBuy
  13. Japanese Mythology in Film: A Semiotic Approach to Reading Japanese Film and Anime (2015) by Yoshiko OkuyamaBuy
  14. Jesus and Brian: Exploring the Historical Jesus and his Times via Monty Python’s Life of Brian (2015) by Joan E. TaylorBuy
  15. Judas Iscariot: Damned or Redeemed: A Critical Examination of the Portrayal of Judas in Jesus Films (1902-2014) (2016) by Carol Anne Hebron Buy
  16. Moralizing Cinema: Film, Catholicism and Power (2015) by Daniel Biltereyst, Daniela Treveri Gennari Buy
  17. Over the Rainbow: The Wizard of Oz as a Secular Myth of America (1991) by Paul NathansonBuy
  18. Preaching to a TV Generation: The Sermon in the Electronic Age (1994) by Michael RognessBuy
  19. The Sacred Foodways of Film: Theological Servings in 11 Food Films (2016) by Antonio D. SisonBuy
  20. Sacred Terror: Religion and Horror on the Silver Screen (2008) by Douglas E. CowanBuy
  21. Sensational Movies: Video, Vision, and Christianity in Ghana (2015) by Birgit MeyerBuy

Second annual status update

Last year on May 1st, when the 200th blog entry was posted, I shared some statistics of this site. Here is an update of where we are now. (The numbers in parenthesis represent last year’s data)

  • 336 blogs posts (vs 200)
  • 124 books (vs 82)
  • 287 articles (vs 199)
  • 57 syllabi (vs 57)
  • 42 likes Facebook page (vs 35)
  • 325 followers on Twitter (vs 24)
  • 9 followers on Google+ (vs 2)
  • We had 12,250 sessions (vs 8,682)  by 11,009 users (vs 7,849) and 25,962 pageviews (vs 19,764) – since January 1, 2007

The Club: Chile’s past accompanied by opaque religious elements

The Club, film posterThe Club is troubling on every level, the apparent reconciliation of its conclusion – rendered in, and reflected by, acts of religion that can’t help articulating spiritual purpose even when the context in which they appear is corrupted – as much driven by compromise as by the resolving will of any higher power, either secular (in the sense of righting the world) or sacred (in forgiving it). No easy Easter film of new beginnings, this: the troubled past of Larrain’s Chile looks set to endure a long time yet, the darkness as visible here as in any of the director’s films to date.

Iona, film review: Reflective British drama doesn’t rely on conventions

IonaIona is a lyrical, reflective drama that owes an obvious debt to the film-making of Andrei Tarkovsky and Carl Dreyer. That is both what makes it so refreshing and sometimes so frustrating. It’s a lowish-budget British drama that doesn’t rely on social realist conventions. Dialogue is kept to a minimum. Plot details are only very gradually revealed. Iona is both the name of the main character (played by Ruth Negga) and the Scottish island on which the film is set. Iona and her troubled teenage son, Bull, are heading there. She left the island many years before….

Graham makes excellent use of the Hebridean landscapes. He pays close attention to the part religion plays in the island’s life and deals very sensitively with the courtship between Bull and a beautiful young girl (Sorcha Groundsell) who can’t walk. In a Tarkovsky or as Dreyer film, though, the mysticism would have been pushed further. There would have been some miraculous happening – some attempt at transcendence. Graham, by contrast, is a little too reticent. The more we learn about the characters, the less mysterious and magical they become.