Watch: Robot & Frank

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Article Reviews
Directed by Jake Schreier (Samuel Goldwyn Films, 2012)

Christopher Ford and Jake Schreier’s film is a quirky, amusing, and occasionally honest caper comedy about an aging burglar who mistakenly breaks into his own home. Frank (Frank Langella) is a former second-story man no longer capable of keeping his own house in order. The milk in the fridge is sour, the rooms are littered with junk, and Frank keeps forgetting that all his favorite eateries have long since closed.


Listen: Grab a root and growl

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Article Reviews
The Citizens Band (Press Hear Records, 2012)

Pop music and musicians have long been an integral part of our presidential election circus. The non-partisan “Rock the Vote” campaign has rolled along in the mainstream for two decades now, but Grab a Root and Growl is the most unlikely presidential election year pop music project you could possibly imagine.


USC Book Club: Why Stay Catholic?

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Article

October 2012:

Why Stay Catholic? Unexpexted Answers to a Life-Changing Question

By Michael Leach

Review:

Ask Catholics what frustrates them about their church and you’re likely to be in for an earful. But Michael Leach has plenty of reasons—50 of them, in fact—why being Catholic is worthwhile not only for our heavenly reward but here on earth, too.


Read: Keys to the Council

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Article Reviews
By Richard Gaillardetz & Catherine Clifford (Liturgical Press, 2012)

October 11 marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council. While the church continues to be roiled by debates over the council’s meaning, an increasing number of Catholics have no personal memory of it. “What exactly was Vatican II?” they might reasonably ask.


Read: Reading God's Handwriting: Poems

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Article Reviews
By Philip Kolin (Kauffman Publishing, 2012)

Philip Kolin’s Reading God’s Handwriting: Poems is a book of action, not of superheroes swooping down on comic book pages to save the day, but of a real God purposefully scribing his truth through scripture, nature, and our lives. In turn, God’s handwriting or, as Kolin portrays it, “God’s hand, writing,” calls us to action through lectio divina, the vigorous spiritual ritual of communing with the living word by reading, contemplating, and acting on the sacred words of scripture.


Listen: O' Be Joyful by Shovel and Ropes

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Article Reviews
O' Be Joyful
Shovels and Rope (Dualtone Music Group, 2012)

The band name suggests a Western movie scene of hanging and burial while the album title sounds like a line from a psalm of praise. On O’ Be Joyful, Shovels and Rope make a noise that is rough and rustic but at the same time downright jubilant. The lyrics tell tales of poverty and hardship that also celebrate a life of love and creativity.


Watch: Safety Not Guaranteed

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Article Reviews
Directed by Colin Trevorrow (Film District, 2012)

Director Colin Trevorrow and screenwriter Derek Connolly’s touching sci-fi misadventure about time travel looks like it was made on a small budget, but it offers a lot of bang for those few bucks. This indie comedy about regret, risk, and redemption has a time machine, secret government agents, a slightly mad scientist, and quirky 20- and 30-somethings who might just harbor collections of comic books and Star Wars figurines.


USC Book Club: Grace Notes

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Article

September 2012:

Grace Notes

By Brian Doyle

Review:

Loyal U.S. Catholic readers need no introduction to Brian Doyle, whose musings, reflections, essays, short stories, and poems have truly graced our pages ever since 1979, when Brian worked here for a year as an associate editor.


Read: Same Call, Different Men

By Michael Cahill| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Reviews
By Mary L. Gautier et al.  (Liturgical Press, 2012)

Same Call, Different Men: The Evolution of the Priesthood Since Vatican II presents a comprehensive portrait of the Catholic priesthood in the United States today based on sociological data on 960 priests and interviews with 60 others, both collected in 2009.


Read: A Different Kind of Cell

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Article Reviews
By W. Paul Jones (Eerdmans, 2011)

“Everyone in prison is innocent, and every prisoner claims to be a new person.” This dismissive one-liner was told by a parole officer to Paul Jones and reflects a common sentiment of resignation in the face of our country’s rapidly expanding prison population. A Different Kind of Cell: The Story of a Murderer Who Became a Monk challenges many popular presumptions about the possibility of true reform and the value of every human life.


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