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-Bringing Up Bobby

by Dr. D ~

bringingupbobby

DVD Now Available: Released Oct.5,2010 by Glowing Nose Productions; Directed by: Chris Staron; Runtime: 93 minutes; Cast: Marc Thompson (James), Alexander Hinsky (Bobby), Brian Morvant (Dennis), Liz Bucher (Liz), Jhey Castles (Terry), Adam Misenko (Eric), Reagan Kendrick (Andrea), Jay Smith (Walter).

Good Christian comedy. Great for the family and a film that could be used and shown by youth groups at church. Deals with the question of identity and how Jesus Christ factors in our lifestyle and decision making.

James is the ‘big brother’ raising Bobby who is turning 16. Their parents have been dead for 12 years and ‘big brother’ James put his own life on hold to raise his siblings particularly Bobby who was only 4 when their parents passed on.

The will has never been read nor has the estate been settled but the time has now come and Bobby’s much older brother Dennis and sister Andrea have come back to make sure that they get their share. James is hoping to get the family home and enough of the money to keep a roof over their heads and eventually send Bobby to college.

In the middle of it all, Andrea hires a lady lawyer to handle her interests. The lawyer  turns out to be a Christian and becomes a love interest for James who hasn’t dated for years.

Meanwhile Bobby is going through an identity crisis brought on by his becoming infatuated with a new girl at school- Liz. All of his current friends are ‘gothic’ in style and dress so also is Bobby. Meanwhile the new girl Liz, a Christian, is not impressed. This starts Bobby on a rather superficial quest to find out what she does like. Also at the same time at home James is challenging Bobby to read the Bible and look into Jesus and make a commitment to God.

Then throw in, Bobby’s closest friend Eric who is also going through a serious crisis with his mother an out-of-control alcoholic.

It sounds rather serious but it is a comedy after all that provides plenty of laughter and enjoyment on the way and even the occasional slapstick which actually works most of the time.

As in many comedies some of the characters are over-the-top, outrageous, and rather one-dimensional foils for fun. Dennis the druggie/anarchist wanderer brother, Andrea the selfish money grabbing possession-loving sister, Walter her rather meek husband/slave, and Bobby’s gothic ‘friends’ at school. Don’t expect any sort of logical or redeeming action/reaction from any of these folks.

There were two scenes in the movie that did not work for me and seemed rather unrealistic even for an outrageous comedy. First of all, Bobby buys a car for Liz. Nobody explains how a 16 year old is able to do that nor is there any update on what happens to the auto after Liz rejects the gift.  Then when Bobby finally gets a shot at dating Liz he turns her down saying that he needs to pursue and concentrate on his new life in Jesus. In real life a teen would probably choose to do both since the girl is a Christian also.

It is a serious Christian film after all and the message of the gospel comes through naturally most of the time. An ideal film for family discussion and for youth groups.

-Go to this site: To purchase the DVD or arrange for a church showing.

*Received DVD free for review: <<Read Disclosure Statement>>            *Top

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-The Last Airbender (PG)

by Dr. D ~

Theater release: July 01, 2010 by Paramount; Directed by: M. Night Shyamalan; Runtime: 1 hour 35 minutes, Cast: Noah Ringer (Aang), Dev Patel (Prince Zuko), Nicola Peltz (Katara), Jackson Rathbone (Sokka), Shaun Toub (Iroh), Aasif Mandvi (Commander Zhao)

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Review

This film was a major disappointment. My grandson and I looked forward to seeing this for months. I was looking forward to see another M. Night Shyamalan masterpiece and this wasn’t while my grandson is a fan of the TV series the movie is based upon. Both of us were completely disappointed.

First of all- the title of the movie should have been ‘The Avatar’ like the TV series but we all know why that just wasn’t possible. It was like an omen of bad things to come.

I don’t think that Shyamalan really ever understood the story and the characters from the TV series. Somehow he must have gotten bogged down in the sets and special effects which by the way weren’t even that good considering that this could have been an epic similar to the ‘Lord of the Rings’ series or ‘Star Wars’.

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The biggest problem were the characters. They were never really developed and never got to the place where I even cared that much for any of them.

Aang ‘the Avatar’ was too dark and confused to be a ‘hero’ and the special effects didn’t really do justice to the powers he was touted to command. Prince Zuko was somewhat sympathetically portrayed but my grandson said Katara was a ‘whiny baby’ in the movie where she is tough and courageous in the TV series.

It was way too serious and comedy relief was totally lacking. Humor served the ‘Ring’ series well and also the Star Wars movies along with the Avatar TV series but not in this movie for some reason. In the end the characters were not even really that likeable.  

Religion

Going in we knew that the story would be steeped in Eastern religions and pantheism. Each of the major people groups had their own champion ‘gods’ or spiritual forces. The ‘fire people’ leader could care less about religion and was in to power and domination. The Avatar ‘Airbender’ was supposed to be the one which would bring peace and so-called balance between the different forces and gods—a ‘messiah’ of sorts.

The explanations of this were rather lacking and murky in the film.

Conclusion

The film ended with a victory that was left uncelebrated. The ‘water people’ bowed down to the Avatar and that was it- and who really cares for that matter. Nothing like the celebration at the end of the first Star Wars movie (now they call it the 4th). 

At the end, both of us wondered if we would even bother to see the sequel if it ever happens. Probably not. My advice—don’t waste your time and money on this turkey.           *Top  

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Trailer: “Cutback”

by Dr. D ~

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Looks good! A new Christian movie coming soon from SkipStone Pictures. Watch the trailer below.

Here’s a link to the movie website

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-Toy Story 3 (G)

by Dr. D ~

Theater release: June 18, 2010 by Pixar Animation Studios; Directed by: Lee Unkrich; Runtime: 1 hour 43 minutes; Cast: Tom Hanks (Woody), Tim Allen (Buzz), Joan Cusack (Jessie), Ned Beatty (Lotso), Don Rickles (Mr. Potato Head).

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The best ‘Toy Story’ of all. An actual adventure with all sorts of good lessons and fun. I took two of my grandchildren to see it-ages 4 and 12- and both liked it. Usually in animated movies I get in a wonderful nap but not this time. Woody and Buzz are back along with Jessie and the potato heads.

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Andy is all grown up now and getting ready to head for college. What to do with all of his old toys? Store them, give ‘em away or dump ‘em. That is the dilemma– the toys are facing an uncertain future.

Through a number of unforeseen circumstances the toys end up at a day care center being mistreated by toddlers during the day and imprisoned by a toy mobster at night.

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The greatest fun was had when Barbie meets up with Ken there. It is delightful and hilarious when Ken does a private showing of his extensive wardrobe.

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A ‘Lots-o’-Huggin’ Bear’- Lotso for short ends up being the villain that acts like a mobster who tries to enslave our hero toys. In the process of escaping from Lotso’s organization Woody and the rest end up at the dump. For small children this part of the story is the scariest of all. For old guys like me too!

However, all ends up well as the toys help each other out and eventually find themselves in another very fine home. Obviously more stories to come.

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-Trailer: “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of The Dawn Treader”

by Dr. D ~

Here’s the trailer of the 3rd Narnia movie: “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of The Dawn Treader”

On December 10th, “The Voyage of The Dawn Treader” debuts bringing us back to the magic and wonder of C.S. Lewis’ beloved world via the fantastic ship, The Dawn Treader. Can’t wait, the trailer is awesome!

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-Law & Order Cancelled

by Dr. D ~

It lasted for 20 years and was nearly the longest running prime time show ever except for the venerable Gunsmoke. Now comes the word that Law and Order has been cancelled.

image In response, Instapundit made the following observation:

“IT MOVED LEFT, HEMORRHAGED VIEWERS, and now Law & Order has been cancelled.”

I personally stopped watching the show for that very reason. It became a trite presentation of the latest leftist cause de jour. They portrayed conservatives as bad, religionists worse, and politicians on the right the very worst—week after week. Only the quality of the show kept middle America from deserting it sooner.            *Top

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-Comedy Central Developing a ‘Jesus Christ’ Cartoon Show?

by Dr. D ~

image Comedy Central is said to be developing a new half-hour cartoon show called- “JC” .  It’s about Jesus Christ living ‘regular’ life in New York city trying escape the shadow of his "powerful but apathetic father".

<<Read about it on my main page>>

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-Lord Save Us From Your Followers

by Dr. D ~

Coming on DVD: April 20,2010

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Review by Dana Chaffin

     Lord Save Us From Your Followers will be released on DVD April 20, 2010.  This is a humorous and insightful documentary about how America views Christians.  It answers the question, “Why is the gospel of love dividing America?”   The film does not add to the fight between “Us” vs. “Them”, but has a conversation with those who believe and oppose the Christian faith.  It is very entertaining and is meant to wake the Church up to see how others view our tactics.                     

“No one ever converted to Christianity because they lost the argument.”

  -Phillip Yancey, author, Rumors of Another World

Lord Save Us From Your Followers is a thought provoking documentary that demonstrates how Americans view Christianity.  It does not add fuel to the fire, but shows both sides and how their tactics are being viewed from the other side.  It is very surprising that statistics show that 9 out 10 Americans claim to be Christian.  So what’s all this “Cultural Wars” fighting about?  The writer/director, Dan Merchant, explains that a lot of the groups, in this so-called fight, cannot think outside their own beliefs.  Most are not willing to have a conversation with anyone from the other side, so we just shake our fists and scream our beliefs expecting to be heard.  I can not see any evidence that this is working.  People are talking about Christians from Politicians to athletes and preachers to students, but are they speaking of them positively?  This film uses interviews on the streets, with people opposing Christianity, with celebrities, and even an unusual confessional booth to show how each side sees the other.  It makes viewers stop and really think about how Christianity is being portrayed and is this how Jesus would approach it?  But some believe today there are so many issues – homosexuality, abortions, various other religions – how can we get our values across?  Through the interviews you will see that we are not doing it very well!  I think Dan Merchant says it best “I found that most people that have a problem with Christians don’t have a problem with Jesus!”

Lord Save Us From Your Followers is a must see for both Christians and non-Christians.  It does not condemn either side, but in fact shows how we can improve our relationships.  Isn’t that what Christianity is all about?  It proves that actions speak louder than words and that whoever screams the loudest does not win!  How did Jesus’ message of compassion, love, mercy, and empathy turn into fighting?  This film clarifies that as Christians we must act like Him!  Please visit www.lordsaveusthemovie.com to find out more information.               *Top

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-Letters to God (PG)

by Dr. D ~

Theater release: April 9,2010, A David Nixon Film; Cast: Jeffrey S. Johnson (Brady), Robyn Lively (Maddy), Tanner Maguire (Tyler), Maree Cheatham (Olivia), Michael Bolten (Ben), Bailee Madison (Samantha “Sam”), Ralph Waite (Mr. Perryfield), L. Derek Leonidoff (Pastor Andy Dugger).

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Review by Dana Chaffin

     Letters to God, an inspiring faith based film, opens in theaters April 9, 2010.  The story is extremely touching, inspired by a true story, and the hope beyond the movie is unstoppable.  The message is about hope and trusting God, no matter the circumstances.  The production is high-quality with an outstanding cast and crew.  It is produced by David Nixon (Facing the Giants, Fireproof) and written by Patrick Doughtie, the actual Tyler’s father.

The Story

    Letters to God is the heartwarming story of a young boy’s battle with cancer and how he touches the lives of those around him.  Tyler Doherty (Tanner Maguire) is an 8 year old boy diagnosed with a rare brain cancer.  He writes letters to God asking Him to help those around him deal with his cancer.  He explains that his letters are like texting your best friend.  Tyler sees the stress his mom, Maddie (Robyn Lively) is under trying to run the family after his father passes away.  He unselfishly asks God to help his mom laugh again.  He is concerned about what his family and friends will do after he is gone.  Not once does he complain or question why he has cancer.  The postman Brady McDaniels (Jeffrey Johnson), going through his own battles with alcohol abuse and a bitter divorce, receives the letters.  He is confused with what to do with the letters at first, but finds himself on a mission for God. 

Beyond the movie

Letters to God is more than just a movie; it is a movement of hope.  The official website, www.letterstogodthemovie.com, offers a multitude of information and encouragement.  There you can watch the movie’s trailer, find theaters showing the film, preorder the soundtrack, find resources about cancer, and write your own letter to God.  

Letters to God is a powerful film of how one boy moves those around him to look to God for answers.  It is very well done with an experienced cast and crew.   Although the film tackles the issue of a young boy with cancer, the message is of hope.  God can use any situation to bring people into a relationship with Him, even a young boy’s letter.  See the movie, visit the website, and join the movement of hope!

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-How to Train Your Dragon (PG)

by Dr. D ~

Theater release: March 26, 2010 by Dreamworks Animation/Paramount; Directed by: Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois; Runtime: 1 hour 39 minutes; Cast: Jay Baruchel (Hiccup), Gerard Butler (Stoick), Craig Ferguson (Gobber), American Ferrera (Astrid), Jonah Hill (Snotlout), David Tennant (Spitelout), Christopher Mintx-Plasse (Fishlegs).

imageOne of the best animation flicks that I have seen in a long time. I took my grandson to see it and didn’t really expect much but rather than getting comfortable and taking a nap, I actually watched the whole thing and really enjoyed it.

The film presents a fantasy world where a Viking village is constantly under attack by dragons. the villagers had become expert dragon fighters and expert on dragons, so they thought. Meanwhile, our film hero Hiccup tries to become a dragon fighter but fails. When he finally brings down a dragon he finds that he cannot finish the job and kill him. He is a complete disappointment to his father.

He secretly befriends the dragon he could not kill and in the process learn more about the dragons than anyone else in the village. In his training to learn to fight dragons he is able to hold his own with every dangerous variety known. His only weakness is that he refuses to finish them off. Which is perceived as a weakness by his father.

The girl that he really likes –Astrid, finally finds out about his secret friend and in the end the reluctant warrior saves the day, gets the girl, and gains the respect of his father and everyone else in his village including the dragons.            *Top 

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