Redbox Text

Lucky number 13…

Describe how you met the last person you texted and talk about your friendship/relationship

The last person to text me was who ever runs the Redbox text deals telling me about a 50% off code that I didn’t use. We have a great relationship. Person texts me deals and I usually ignore them — unless it’s a free Redbox. Because with free Redbox, I rent the movies I would have NEVER paid to see or wind up being glad that I didn’t pay to see.

Like:

  • Underworld: Awakening (STINK BOMB. The only good thing: Theo James.)
  • Django Unchained (surprisingly better than I thought it would be. Very Tarantino… I don’t know how he could get more himself, but I think he did.)
  • Sucker Punch (stopped halfway through and returned it the same night. Can you regret a free movie? Yes.)
  • Silver Linings Playbook (so good. Very funny and honest about how people deal with mental illness.. until that kinda sappy Hollywood ending. But the dance rehearsals – worth it. LOVE J-Law and B-Coop. They have great chemistry.)

“You can’t save them all…”

WorldNetDaily linked to a story that is an update about one of the young stars from one of my favorite documentaries ever, Born into Brothels.

A full update from early 2008  on the kids may be found here.

Avijit, who is why I adore the film, is attending NYU.  Others are married.  A couple of others are still in school.  When Avijit said “there is no hope to be found here” (paraphrase), I cried.  It breaks my heart that he felt that way.  I sat there, convicted… having been given means and an opportunity and did nothing.  I did buy two prints that went into the charity they established.  My full thoughts from April 2004 may be found on my old blog.

The Times of India caught up with Puja.  She was given a chance to study in the US and her mother refused to let her leave.  I know they arranged for schooling in India.

Now Puja has entered the sex trade… like her mother.  She’s financially well-off.  Pays for her apartment, her mother’s and another room to meet clients.

My heart breaks for this young woman.  I read her story and cried.  I couldn’t stop crying.  To have help presented to you, to reject it for whatever reason, and enter a life that may appear glamorous but is really a prison… that is full of risk of disease and death.

Then it hit me…

Our Heavenly Father’s heart must break in ways similar every time we reject Him.  He offers us love, grace, forgiveness, peace, kindness… and in our pride, we turn on our heels and move away from Him.

Worst Movie I Saw in 2008

Wanted with Angelina Jolie and James McAvoy

I’m pretty good about suspending disbelief with movies and just letting it go but dang… it’s pretty rare when I come across a movie where I just have to say

WTF – COME ON!

So, people are willing to let a loom – A LOOM – randomly determine who lives and who dies (via binary code!) but belief in a merciful, loving, just Creator God is too much. That’s a crutch for weak minded fools but smart weavers discovered a code and created The Fraternity to save humanity.  If they were so awesome, why didn’t they kill Hitler or Pol Pot or Dane Cook?

If you haven’t seen it, don’t.

UPDATE:  Apparently, I’m not the only one to think this whole movie, or at least the Loom of Doom, is ridiculous.

Entertaining Evil

Sunday night, a friend and I went to see The Dark Knight. Even before the hype of Heath Ledger’s accidental death in January, I had already planned to see this movie. I loved what Christopher Nolan and Christian Bale did to reboot the Batman franchise out of its campy history. Tim Burton did a little of this with the first two movies but there was still a day-glo feeling to them. Then it started to look like a comic book with Batman Forever (Jim Carrey’s rubber face included). But… it had Val Kilmer.

We won’t talk about Batman and Robin. Aside from Uma Thurman, that movie stinks. Stinks. Stinks. She’s so over the top, she makes it bearable. Almost.

Then… Batman Begins went to the 1980’s and 1990’s comic books, which are more adult and decidedly darker than their predecessors. (They were done by Frank Miller… who wrote Sin City, 300, and the Watchmen – all of which are very graphic, very dark, and down right disturbing.) More psychological. Bruce Wayne isn’t just a rich vigilante. He’s a tortured man trying to make peace with himself, trying to find himself… And… there’s Christian Bale who is not only smokin’ hot, he’s a really good actor. (Aside: he will be starring as John Connor in the new Terminator movies starting Summer 2009).

This change has angered and upset alot of people whose primary experiences with Batman are the earlier movies and the TV series – which is nothing but camp. They aren’t familiar with the comic books at all or its dark past.

So, we go to see the Dark Knight. First, I don’t remember hearing a single cuss word in the entire movie. At all. Well, maybe one by the thugs but I’m not sure. I am pretty sure I said more when we were talking about it at the conclusion…

“The Joker is seriously f’ed up.”

Was the movie good? Depends on how you want to define “good.” Did the story move along at a good pace to keep from getting bored in a 2 hr 30 min movie? Was the acting good? How were the special effects?

Yes. Yes. AWESOME!

However, it is very violent but not in a bloody way. There isn’t alot of gore. Very dark. The Joker is a man who has no purpose to his violence. He hurts and kills people because he can. It is very easy to see how Heath Ledger had so much trouble sleeping after he finished his work on the film. Demented. Scary. Bat sh*t crazy. In a way, it is the most terrifying part of being human – abject violence and the ability to inflict terror for the sole purpose of doing it and to see how people react.

To me, Freddy Kruger and Jason are minor league horror villains compared to Ledger’s Joker.

I can’t remember the last time I watched a movie and it gave me nightmares. Sunday night, my dreams were very violent. I was telling Mark about it last night. He said he was almost going to see it but after my description of it decided not to… that he did not want to watch that kind of movie. I said that I wasn’t going to have another nightmare last night.. not going to allow that.

About 3 am, I jerk awake from another nightmare. I laid in bed and started praying.

God, what is going on? I have watched movies like this before and they haven’t affected me at all. Perhaps that is saying something about me… my numbness to evil, darkness, and violence but, we can talk about that later. But this is different. What is up with this movie that 2 days later, the imagery is still affecting me?

The Spirit replied:

This movie is surrounded by evil. It tormented Heath Ledger to his death.

(Further clarification: this morning – Christian Bale’s mom and sister filed a police report on him – abuse charges for an assault that they said happened after the London premiere)

I immediately went back to sleep… back to the tortured dreams of robberies, guns, violence, alarms. It leads me to question how much have I let God regenerate my heart. I don’t doubt that I am justified by faith… but the process of sanctification is on going. How much am I fighting that and thwarting it by my media choices?

Christianity in Docs

At the Nashville Film Festival, I saw a number of documentaries on Christianity or their interaction with the world: Pussycat Preacher, At the Death House Door, Prophets Rising, and Join Us. There is also another recent documentary I’ve seen twice (CBS and the Biography Channel) – Jesus Camp. Given that I love movies, I want to take some time to talk about what I thought of these movies and how they portray believers and how non-believers might view them.

Read More

Living Life to the Fullest – Young@Heart

It’s playing in Nashville right now. Run! Don’t WALK to Green Hills to see it. It was sold out both sessions at NFF. I was thrilled to see it playing here so soon afterwards. The film is better than anything I heard about it before.

Young@Heart is about a seniors chorus in MA preparing for another show and European tour. 70 and 80 year olds, touring Europe… singing rock songs. Their zest for life is amazing.

Bring tissues. You’ll need them.

They even brought some prisoners to tears with their version of Bob Dylan’s “Forever Young”, dedicated to one of their members they lost over night. I’ve found a bunch of clips on youtube and put them together in this playlist. Watch them and be encouraged. You are only as young as you think you are. And while the one lady may be 92, she acts younger in mind and spirit than alot of 25 year olds. God bless them!