Moviegoers got a double dose of Catholicism this weekend as Kevin Smith's comedy Dogma and Luc Besson's biopic The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc hit theaters. Strangely enough, Christian critics found more value in the foul-mouthed indie flick than in the tale of the virgin saint. Meanwhile, Pokémon: The First Movie trounced the competition to take the box-office crown.
Pokémon: The First Movie ($32.4 million)
Kids love Pokémon. Kids are good at bugging parents until they give in. Pokémon: The First Movie makes gobs of money. Any questions? You'll be hard-pressed to find a positive review of this movie, Christian or otherwise; presumably because no one's hiring 6-year-old critics. The movie was chastised most often for presenting the hypocritical message that fighting is wrong, since "this frenzied film is filled with violent confrontations, battles, [and] threatening destructive forces" (Preview's John Evans).
The Bone Collector ($12 million)
A couple of new Christian reviews trickled in for The Bone Collector this week, taking up opposing viewpoints on the movie's entertainment value. Christian Spotlight guest critic Gabe Rodriguez calls it "a heart-stopping, edge-of-your-seat thriller that … is also one of the most original, cunning thrillers in years," while the U.S. Catholic Conference says the movie "slides from engrossing to disappointing with its unsatisfying revelations and gory wrap-up." Considering the film is about a paralyzed forensics specialist (Denzel Washington) who once again feels useful when his expertise is needed to track down a serial killer, it's strange that reviews have avoided wrestling with questions about the nature of evil and the need for redemption—even to say if the movie ignores such ...1
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