Tags :: Seasonal Viewing

A Triduum ritual: <em>The Miracle Maker</em> ARTICLE

A Triduum ritual: The Miracle Maker

Our seasonal movie-watching during Advent, Lent, and the Christmas and Easter seasons varies from year to year, but Triduum is always the same.

The Grinch REVIEW

The Grinch (2018)

Replacing Karloff-ian malice and spite / Cumberbatch-ian grousing makes this one Grinch-lite. / It’s a kinder and gentler tale than we’ve seen / Of course he’s not nice, but this Grinch is less mean.

It&#8217;s a Wonderful Life REVIEW

It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

The truth is that It’s a Wonderful Life is both darker and more subversive than its popular reputation as cheery holiday “Capra-corn” would suggest, and more robustly hopeful than cynics and hipster deconstructionists would have it.

Mardi Gras and movies: Easy riders, anthropomorphic frogs ARTICLE

Mardi Gras and movies: Easy riders, anthropomorphic frogs

New Orleans’ legendary Mardi Gras celebration has been depicted or used as a backdrop in scores of films, though surprisingly few depictions are of any great or enduring note.

Mercy and movies: Lenten viewing for the Year of Mercy ARTICLE

Mercy and movies: Lenten viewing for the Year of Mercy

Six years ago I put together a list of movie recommendations for Lenten viewing, six titles for the six weeks of Lent. This year, for the Year of Mercy, here’s a new list: one that puts particular emphasis on mercy, charity, and active concern for one’s neighbor.

Christmas Day is over &#8230; time to watch Christmas movies! ARTICLE

Christmas Day is over … time to watch Christmas movies!

What can Catholics do to keep things Christmasy until mid-January? Among other things, I suggest keeping the tree and the lights lit until at least January 6, if not the following Sunday — and saving the Christmas movies till after Christmas day.

The trouble with Christmas movies ARTICLE

The trouble with Christmas movies

“What are your favorite Christmas movies?” As a Catholic film critic, I get this question several times every December, often on the air or via social media. The question, alas, touches on a sore subject for me.


Black Nativity [video] (2013)

Of the 2013 Christmas season’s trio of religiously inflected Christmas movies, this one just might be the most deserving of your time.

Against Capra’s Critics: In Defense of <i>It&#8217;s a Wonderful Life</i> ARTICLE

Against Capra’s Critics: In Defense of It’s a Wonderful Life

Perhaps the most beloved of Christmas movies, Frank Capra’s sleeper classic It’s a Wonderful Life has inevitably become a target of seasonal, iconoclastic culture-warmongering.


Spotlight: Into the Desert: Lent and Film

Spotlighted for your Lenten benefit: my 2011 blog post “Into the Desert: Lent and Film,” including some general thoughts on fasting and ascesis and some recommendations for appropriate Lenten viewing. Note that among the last year’s crop of films are a number that would make excellent Lenten viewing.


Still Christmas: Christmas Viewing (Good & Bad!)

Following up on my “Still Christmas” post on Advent and Christmas family traditions, Christmas movies are an important tradition in many households. For me, Christmas movies are an especially important way of marking the continuing Christmas season. In general, I would rather watch Christmas movies with my kids after Christmas day, rather than before, as a way of celebrating the Christmas season.


Still Christmas: Advent & Christmas Family Traditions

All Advent long, observant Catholics and other Christians hold the line against premature Christmas, holding off on decking the halls and singing Christmas carols during what is meant to be a time of preparation. Now, as the world is busily dismantling what’s left of its Christmas trappings, it’s time for Christians to double down on the continued celebration of the Christmas season.


More on Lenten Viewing

My Lenten viewing suggestions prompted a reader to ask: “Would you consider supplementing an English-only list? I love the idea of a Lenten movie night, but I have several children under reading age, and my husband just dislikes reading his movies. LOL. I will have to carve out time on my own during the week to watch the intriguing foreign films you have included.”

Into the Desert: Lent and Film POST

Into the Desert: Lent and Film

Many Catholics observe Lent with a discipline of withdrawal, in whole or in part, from mass communications media: movies, television, Internet, radio, music, newspapers. This is an admirable discipline … I find it helpful to make a practice of spiritual viewing during Lent, just as many make a practice of spiritual reading. For those inclined to consider this practice, here are six film suggestions for the six weeks of Lent.