Faith Issues in Film Group

An appreciation of film is all it takes to join this group. The 2023-24 season is our 25th year of celebrating the medium! 

Our group meets at 7 pm, on the first Tuesdays of each month from September through May, except December. We view the selected film on our own and then come together to discuss it. Typically, around a dozen people attend. In pre-COVID times, we met in members’ homes, but now we gather on Zoom; please contact The Church Office for the link.

We talk about character transformation, cinematic values, etc, plus our perspectives on the faith and ethical issues raised by the films. Our discussions are rich with multiple views and observations, as well as lots of laughs and caring, all enriching our relationships. And we close with prayers of the people.

Here is our 2023-24 schedule, chosen through our election process in the spring:

Sept 5 Women Talking (2022)
Oct 3 The Duke (2022)
Nov 7 Tár (2022)
Jan 2 Living (2020)
Feb 6 Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016)
Mar 5 The Swimmers (2022)
April 2 Crip Camp (2020)
May 7 Denial (2017)

Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution (2020)

Directors: James LeBrecht and Nicole Newnham 

Available on Netflix

“This camp changed the world,” we’re told, in the early moments of James LeBrecht and Nicole Newnham’s documentary, “and nobody knew about it.” The most refreshing and surprising element of this moving chronicle is that, title notwithstanding, the subject is not Camp Jened, the Catskills getaway that offered disabled kids and teens in the 1960s a “normal” summer camp experience. It’s about how that camp was the epicenter of a movement — a place where they could be themselves and living their lives didn’t have to be a utopian ideal, but a notion that they could carry out into the world, and use as a baseline for change. 

Denial (2017)

Director: Mick Jackson, Emmy Award winner for Temple Grandin

Based on the acclaimed book History on Trial: My Day in Court with a Holocaust Denier

Availability: Streaming on Amazon Prime and available on DVD

 

Denial is a movie about a real-life libel case. The filmmaking isn’t fancy or ambitious. Its aim is to tell the story of the case, from its origins to its finish, and it does so clearly, with no embellishment. Fortunately, the issues surrounding the case are so fascinating and so packed with moral importance that a straightforward telling is quite enough to make “Denial” a worthwhile drama. In 1996, the American historian Deborah Lipstadt was sued by the British historian David Irving over Lipstadt’s claim that Irving was a liar and a falsifier of history. In his books and lectures, Irving had claimed that there were no gas chambers at Auschwitz. In bringing the suit, Irving charged that Lipstadt had damaged his career and his reputation. 

This film reasserts the primacy of truth. What a tonic.