Vodcast: Navigating Beauty and the Beast

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Disney’s live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast has a lot going for it, at least on paper: It’s a new, updated version of a beloved classic. It stars the effervescent Emma Watson. And it’s rated PG. Families will flock to the thing, right? And in truth, a lot of them will. But many Christian parents aren’t […]

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Gilmore Girls Helps Viewers Get a Better Education. What Else Can It Do?

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It looks like Netflix wants more Gilmore Girls. According to Deadline Hollywood a few days ago, Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos said they’ve had “preliminary” talks with the show’s creators for another installation of the Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life revival. I know that fans of Gilmore Girls would love for the […]

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2017 Plugged In Movie Awards: And the Award Goes To …

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Yes, ladies and gentlemen, after long and arduous deliberation (involving an occasional round of fisticuffs) and painstaking vote counting, it’s time to unveil the winners of our fourth annual Plugged In Movie Awards. Alas, due to budget cuts, we had to cancel our typical star-studded banquet in Hollywood. Perhaps next year. BEST MOVIE FOR KIDS […]

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At The Oscars This Year, It’s All About the Women

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The Oscars are nearly here. And we all know it wouldn’t be the Oscars without some Oscar-centric controversy. The #OscarsSoWhite hashtag has been replaced, according to some, with #OscarsSoMale. A recent study by USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism found that of the 109 films released in 2014, women received fewer than 29% of […]

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Why Do Christian Films Bomb? (No, Really?)

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Much to the surprise of Hollywood, The Passion of the Christ took in an earth-shattering $370.8 million domestically back in 2004 when it was released, cueing Hollywood into the huge, economic power of Christian moviegoers. The Passion was the fifth top-grossing film globally that year ($612 million), beating out the likes of Troy, Shark Tale […]

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Plugged In Movie Awards: Best Christian Movie

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We close out our Plugged In Movie Awards nominations with our picks for best Christian movie, and man, what a tough year it was. Faith-based films have never been better, and Hollywood made it extra tricky to decide even what, exactly, constituted a Christian movie. Could Martin Scorsese’s Silence or Mel Gibson’s Hacksaw Ridge, both […]

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Plugged In Movie Awards: Best Movie For Adults

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Those Oscar voters have it made. To choose the best of the best based on sheer aesthetics—the writing, the acting, the cinematography—feels easy compared to the task set before us. In this category, we have to factor in ethics, morality and worldview, too. Sure, maybe a given film looks amazing. But what does it actually […]

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Plugged In Movie Awards: Best Movie For Teens

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Another day, another batch of nominees! This time we turn to movies for teens. It’s a perennially tricky category to pick for, and this year yields a truly eclectic mix of movies, pitting some of the year’s top-grossing flicks against a couple of little-seen gems. As always, read our full reviews before you or anyone […]

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Pop Culture’s Top 10 Movers and Shakers (2016 Edition)

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Well, not every year can be a winner. For many of us, 2016 was a time we’d rather forget. Everyone seemed so angry this year. We saw it in the nearly interminable election cycle. We saw it in the constant barrage of protests and counter-protests. Why, the atmosphere was so explosive this year that even […]

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Arrival and Us: Are We All Speaking the Same Language?

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Almost everyone likes Arrival. The $24.1 million worth of people who saw it thought it was just fine. (It gets a “B” from viewers, according to Cinemascore.) Secular critics thought it was fantastic. (It’s got a 93% “freshness” rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and plenty of reviewers are calling it one of the best movies of […]

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When Doctor Strange Went to Ephesus

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Doctor Strange is casting its lucrative spell on the box office. It’s Marvel’s latest successful introduction of a character whom only really “inside baseball” comic book fans likely even knew existed. And in translating the mystical story of Dr. Stephen Strange to the big screen, director Scott Derrickson has managed to do something paradoxically compelling: […]

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The Walking Dead Has Gone Too Far … Even For Some of Its Fans

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At least 17 million people watched the Season 7 premiere of The Walking Dead—massive numbers in today’s fragmented television landscape. More people watched the villain Negan beat two characters to death with his barbed bat Lucille than watched Sunday Night Football that evening. I was one of them. You can find our review of the […]

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Parents: The “Nintendo Switch” Console Could Actually Be Good for Your Family

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Image of the Nintendo Switch logo (Copyright Nintendo 2016)

A Nintendo property is blowing up the Internet… again. Even though it isn’t Pokemon-related, it looks like it could be another game changer. What I’m talking about is the announcement of the Nintendo Switch, which Nintendo hopes will be its comeback in the Sony-and-Microsoft-dominated video game market after the lackluster performance of the Wii U. Why is […]

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Vodcast: Is The Birth of a Nation’s Grittiness Actually a Good Thing?

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The new Birth of a Nation movie is rated R, and rightfully so. But its subject matter has us wrestling again with a tricky concept: maybe, just maybe, harsh content can sometimes serve a purpose. The truth of the matter is this: Life—both modern and historical—is not as cut and dry as we like to make […]

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