THE 15:17 TO PARIS – God’s Plans for You

1517 PosterOn August 21, 2015, an Islamic terrorist attempted to cause mass death and destruction on a Thalys train bound for Paris. Three 20-something American men (two of whom were military) confronted the attacker and prevented the deaths of potentially hundreds of passengers.

The 15:17 to Paris tells the story of that incident in gripping, edge-of-your-seat fashion. Director Clint Eastwood has a knack for creating exceptional portraits of real-life events (American Sniper, Flags of our Fathers, and Letters From Iwo Jima, to name a few). However, the execution of the story beyond the train leaves a lot to be desired.

Though its technique and pacing are clunky at times, The 15:17 to Paris‘ thematic heart is very strong. Within this story of tragedy averted is the acknowledgment of something every human being knows to be true deep within themselves: that every life has a plan and purpose.

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Super Bowl Trailer Round-Up

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Well, Super Bowl LII is over. The Philadelphia Eagles have won – good for them. And Justin Timberlake did…something…during halftime.

But what I really look forward to during the Super Bowl are the commercials, particularly the movie trailers. This is the event Hollywood uses to show off their best stuff for the coming year. This year’s roster is pretty good.

Here’s a brief look at my thoughts about each trailer.

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THE POST – “What is Truth?”

post_xlgSince the beginning of the American republic, there has been a free press – people whose job it is to bring stories of note to the public, including stories about government, both good and bad. The Founding Fathers intended the press to be a check on the power of the state, and hold lawmakers accountable for their actions.

In the years since our founding, the press has unfortunately devolved into shameless advocacy. Today’s “journalists” can’t hold a candle to the newsmen of a half-century ago. But that’s a discussion for another day.

Steven Spielberg’s The Post reminds us of a time when journalists still covered the news and there was still a semblance of integrity in their ranks…more or less. The film is based on the historic fight between The Washington Post and The White House on the publication of the classified Pentagon Papers in 1971. It was a watershed moment in American journalism, and Spielberg puts his spin on it – which is enjoyable aside from the blatant modern politics infused within.

The Post brought up one of the fundamental desires of human beings: the quest for truth. None of us like to be lied to, especially by our purported employees in government. And we all have this innate desire to learn the truth – a desire that was implanted within us by our Creator.

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THE 15:17 TO PARIS Trailer

the-1517-to-paris-trailer

Just watched the entire trailer for The 15:17 to Paris, Clint Eastwood’s historical drama about the 2015 Thalys Train Attack in France. It looks really good – filled with Eastwood’s talent for creating tension in scenes and shots. But what has me the most intrigued by the film is that the main characters will be played by the three young American men (two of whom were U.S. military) who actually subdued the would-be Islamist killer.

Based on what I’ve seen in the trailer, these three heroes have some acting chops. I’ll reserve my whole judgment until I see the entire film, however.

Top 10 of 2017

FA Top 10

Happy New Year!

2017 was a great year for movies. In fact, I had a somewhat difficult time choosing my top ten favorite films because I liked so many movies this year for so many different reasons. They were all diverse in tone, subject matter, and theme.

On the flipside, there were also several movies I disliked immensely, therefore my Bottom Five were easy to discern from the pack.

So this year, there is a Top Ten and Bottom Five, with honorable mentions for each category – films that I thought, for both good and ill, were deserving of being listed but weren’t good/bad enough to be on the list itself.

First up, the Bottom Five!

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