Why We Love Men in Capes

My friend Mark Meynell is a great film fan, an enthusiast for superheroes and an excellent communicator. So I'm excited to see his new venture - an audio documentary about the significance of superheroes. It's 30 minutes long and is at the bargain price of £1.29 on iTunes (see below). I've not yet had time […]

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Amazing activity in the world of social media

Extraordinary counter for social media activity around the world. 270 billion comments on Facebook in the last year. Over 1.5 million hours of video uploaded to YouTube in the last month. 16 million iPhone apps downloaded a day. About 10,000 tweets every second. Fascinating. (HT Big Bible) These posts may be related: The CAST model […]

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The truth will set you free - Catfish

A conversation this morning made me realise I'd never posted this article here, which is why it's appearing some time after the film. This article was first published on Culturewatch. Beware: spoilers ahoy! One of the many changes which the Internet has brought into our lives is that it is remarkably easy to masquerade as […]

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Russell Brand on death and significance

Fascinating extract fromt Jeremy Paxman's interview with Russell Brand: I came across this on Barry Cooper's website where he makes an interesting connection with Jonathan Edwards. He also highlights this particularly interesting quote: “Someone told me once that all desire is the desire to be at one with God in substitute form. So perhaps we […]

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The King's Speech - Encouraging Words

First published on Culturewatch © Tony Watkins 2011. The King's Speech is bookended by two speeches. The first is a disaster, a deeply humiliating experience for Prince Albert, Duke of York (Colin Firth), because of a severe stammer which had afflicted him since early childhood. He gives this speech on behalf of his father, King George […]

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Robin Hood: A hero for every age

This article was first published in Idea magazine (May/June 2010) and on Culturewatch.org. © Tony Watkins, 2010. The legend of Robin Hood has an enduring fascination, and not just for small boys with bows and arrows. For over seven centuries, he has been an icon of struggle against unjust authority and of defending the interests […]

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Are Fairy Tales Finished?

An interesting piece by Mike Cosper on The Gospel Coalition Blog about Walt Disney's announcement that it will not make any more princess fairy tales, at least for the foreseeable future. I was particularly struck by this observation:   I can’t help but wonder, though, if the cognitive disconnect between today’s families and the world […]

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Why bother with soap?

I've just been reminded of a Culturewatch article I wrote back in 2004 about soap operas, and thought it might be worth posting it here. Bear in mind that it was six years ago that I wrote it, so the references may seem a bit dated. Soap operas go back eighty years to the days […]

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Media Messages Matter

This is the first part of the multiplex session on Media Messages Matter at the third Lausanne Congress in Cape Town, October 2010. The section on news and entertainment media as a global missiological challenge, with Margunn Dahle and myself, starts at around the 06:30 mark with Nick Pollard's introduction, but watch Joseph Vijayam's part […]

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Seeing through other eyes - C.S. Lewis

I love this quote from C.S. Lewis's An Experiment in Criticism (1961), which is easily applicable to film as well as literature: This, so far as I can see, is the specific value or good of literature as Logos; it admits us to experiences other than our own. They are not, any more than our […]

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Running a film discussion evening

popcorn from Crestock Stock Photos I often lead film discussions, but there's enormous value in organising leading them yourself rather than depending on some 'expert' from outside (though sometimes that can be a good thing - I'm still open to invitations!). Here are some brief guidelines. I'll add to this and expand on some of […]

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Good films to discuss

Here are some suggestions for good films to discuss in a group context. This list nowhere near exhaustive; merely a few films that I’ve either enjoyed using myself or that I’m confident would be great. The list is very roughly in order of how suitable I think a film is for discussing: things near the […]

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Whose opinion on films do you trust most?

The results of a survey into whose opinion people most trust about films has just been published, prior to the British Film Institute London Film Festival. It's clear than people don't trust film critics, with even the wonderful Mark Kermode only reaching 3%, though I think this is simply because most people don't actually listen […]

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Twenty Questions to Consider When Watching a Film

Movie Time from Crestock Photos These question are based on those in my book, Focus: The Art and Soul of Cinema. They are intended to help you organise your thinking as you watch a film. As well as helping you in your own thinking about movies, these questions also provide a useful framework for group discussions […]

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Norman Wisdom, 1905–2010

Norman Wisdom was one of the funniest people in the history of British film. His talent for physical comedy was matchless - no wonder Charlie Chaplin called Wisdom his favourite clown. But he could also switch to become sensitive and serious, as when he first sang 'Don't Laugh at Me' in Trouble in Store (1953). […]

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Jeffrey Overstreet on the how of storytelling

Encounter 10: Jeffrey Overstreet on the how of storytelling from International Arts Movement on Vimeo. Jeffrey is a great, insightful Christian film critic whose perspectives I value highly. This lecture was given at the International Arts Movement Encounter 10. These posts may be related: Art’s Desire: Responding to Film and Literature (part six) This is […]

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Interview with Corey Olsen, the Tolkien Professor

Colin Duriez, the most knowledgeable person on C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien I know, interviews 'the Tolkien Professor', Corey Olsen, for Festival in the Shire Journal. Here's one question which particularly interests me. You can read the rest here, but you'll need to go to the Festival in the Shire home page to access anything […]

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A Hunger for Truth and Justice

Stieg Larsson’s Crime novels Interview with Tony Watkins by Christian Bensel, 23 March 2010   The bestselling Millennium Trilogy features cases of mass murderers, human trafficking and government conspiracies. 27 million copies have been sold in over 40 countries according to theEconomist (March 22,  2010), making the late  Stieg Larsson the second most sold author worldwide in 2008 […]

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Twelve questions to consider when watching the news

It's very good to see Lars Dahle joining the blogosphere. Lars is Principal of Gimlekollen School of Journalism and Communication in Kristiansand, Norway, where I am now an adjunct lecturer. He's heading up the media and technology stream for Cape Town 2010 (3rd Lausanne Congress). A couple of his early posts have focused on the […]

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Why is Twilight popular? – a 3-minute explanation

via lookingcloser.org Posted via web from Tony Watkins These posts may be related: A Hunger for Truth and Justice Stieg Larsson’s Crime novels Interview with Tony Watkins by Christian Bensel, 23 March 2010   The bestselling Millennium Trilogy features cases of mass murderers, human trafficking and government conspiracies. 27... Using film in Christian communication - […]

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Responding to Media

The final session with Southampton Deanery Chapter. SDC3. Responding to Media View more presentations from Tony Watkins. And the slides are here. These posts may be related: Art’s Desire: Responding to Film and Literature (part three) This is the third in a series of six posts, which was first published as an article in Anvil […]

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Perspectives on Media

The second of three sessions at the Southampton Deanery Chapter study day: SDC2. Perspectives on media View more presentations from Tony Watkins. A more print-friendly version of the slides is here. These posts may be related: Topics: media This is a brief list of some of the subjects in the area of the media on […]

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Culture Now

Yesterday I led a study day on engaging with media culture for the Southampton Deanery Chapter. Here's the first session: SDC1. Culture Now View more presentations from Tony Watkins. A more print-friendly version of the slides is here. These posts may be related: Twelve questions to consider when watching the news It's very good to […]

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The failure of His Dark Materials film trilogy

I stumbled across this yesterday, having missed it when it was published in The Guardian last year: The actor Sam Elliott, who starred in the 2007 adaptation of the first novel, Northern Lights (the film was called The Golden Compass), said earlier this week that books two and three were not being filmed due to […]

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The Tony and Jane Watkins Trust oversees and supports the ministries of Tony and Jane Watkins in Christian training, education, and communication. It is a charity registered in England and Wales, no. 1062254.
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