Wolverine the Movie (X-Men Origins: Wolverine)

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This prequel to the X-Men trilogy of films is quite a good watch. It runs just under two hours and though very violent, there is no blood (and therefore has a PG-13 rating). It is directed by the Oscar-winning director Gavin Hood (Tsotsi and Rendition). This poster is for the release in France, I think – but I liked it more than the others.

The story is interesting from several perspectives, not least of which is Jimmy Logan’s (Hugh Jackman) Canadian citizenship! I went to see the film with a sister who was stationed at our convent/book store in Toronto for 9 1/2 years and another sister who is visiting here now from Toronto; they loved the Canadian link! So Wolverine is both a mutant and an ‘alien’, so to speak…. The source materials say it was filmed in Australia and New Zealand.

According to Wikipedia the X-Men trilogy has grossed more that $1 billion worldwide. X-Men and Wolverine fans will surely like this film.

I don’t have much time to do an in-depth review right now so I will just say, that I bet there will be a sequel to the prequel… And be sure to stay after you think the film has ended.

This has a comic book-into-film feel to it, as would be expected. The super-hero story is pretty thin but it has heart, even when revenge seems to become Logan’s motivation. I was glad that there weren’t too many characters to keep track of. There is the usual “free will” choice vs. revenge theme, but watching Hugh Jackman zoom through this comic book universe (that at times reminded me of Spider-Man and other Marvel characters) made it worth the time as an entertainment.

The fact that it has no blood resulting from the violence can be problematic for kids who may not yet be able to distinguish between fantasy and reality – so it is a good talking point for parents and children.  Many films don’t show the consequences of violence, like blood, to keep a PG-13 rating from the MPAA. But consequences are important to consider.

I liked it well enough.

Come & See Discernment Weekend May 22 -25, 2009

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I know that most readers of this blog may not be discerning a vocation to religous life (that is, to become a nun) but on the chance that you might be, or know someone who is in discernment, I am posting this information about a Come & See we, the Daughters of St. Paul, are sponsoring here at our Culver City location over Memorial Day weekend. See contact information below. Blessings! R

What:         DISCERNMENT RETREAT
with prayer–talks–sharing–Eucharistic adoration–silence–discernment helps—community life

Who:        Young Women ages 17-30 
who are discerning a call to religious life

When:        MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND
May 22 @ 6pm – May 25 @ 1pm (2009)

Where:        Daughters of St. Paul Convent
3908 Sepulveda Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230

Why:        To better understand how God is calling YOU to return his love in your life.

Limited spaces available! Applications due 5/19/2009. 

Suggested offering to cover costs: $20

 For applications, please contact:

Sr. Tracey (310.488.2767) matthia11@aol.com 

Sr. Margaret Michael (703.549.1323) vocations@paulinemedia.com

Language of Logos (great media literacy test/lesson)

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One of my colleagues, Tim Welch, from the diocese of St. Cloud, MN, who attended the NACMP/NCCL conferences with us in Detroit (Nat’l Assoc. of Catechetical Media Professionals, www.nacmp.org and the  Nat’l Conference for Catechetical Leadership, www.nccl.org),  sent around this terrific logo analysis/test today:

The Language of Logos in Graphic Design 

(BTW, we just saw the film Cast Away , with Tom Hanks, for our April Movie Bible Night. As you may recall, FedEx features very strongly in the film as product placement. The Gospel was about  Thomas – John 20: 24-29 – who doubted that the Lord had come back to life – much like the friends of Chuck Noland – read “no land” – who could not quite grasp that he had returned to Memphis after four years stranded on an island. So, this logo quiz, especially of the FedEx logo – which no longer has angel wings on it however – is quite interesting.)

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Also, here is another version of the logo “game” that Tim found online (and is good as a media literacy/media mindfulness exercise) : The Retail Alphabet Game

Readers Theater: Spotlight on Saints

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This recent publication from the Daughters of St. Paul, Pauline Books and Media, is a real treat for kids from about grade 3 through grade 5 or 6 – and their teachers. It is “easy” theater, that is, all it requires is the ability to read. The book blends various character traits with decision-making and refers to a life of a saint to shed light on appropriate behavior choices today.

If the class moves from “readers theater” to “real theater” or live theater, there are suggestions for movement and expression. There is one play per month and therefore twelve saints. Here are the saints and the themes:

John Bosco (learning leadership), Bakhita (forgiveness), Mother Mary (facing fear), Gianna Molla (setting priorities), Bernardine of Siena (respecting language), Paul (living faith), Bl. Kateri (sticking to principles), Clare (treating others equally), Andrew Kim Daegeon (being helpful), St. Therese (living the “little way”), St. Martin de Porres (looking for God in everyone), Juan Diego (humility).

I think these would make good “radio” plays as well (if you decide to record or tape be sure to check for the school or parish policies and ask for permission from parents). Producing media is also very educational for kids because they learn how much work goes into production and they come to udnerstand more about how all media, even in Readers Theater, is constructed by what we choose to include or leave out, and performance qualities such as tone of voice, movement, facial expression, etc.

click here to order Spotlight on Saints

– Sr Rose

Spotlight on Saints!

By Diana R. Jenkins
Illustrated by Virginia Helen Richards, FSP

Twelve humorous readers’ theater scripts, performed with or without props, engage and entertain students in grades 4–8. The book includes a play for every month of the year that features a contemporary kid with a real-life problem—and a saint who helps them solve it.

Written in an easy-to-use readers theater format, these scripts work well in a variety of educational settings, teach basic information about the saints, promote good values, motivate, and inspire. Kids will enjoy the funny storylines and the quirky characters so much that they won’t even notice how much they’re really learning.

Special features include an introduction giving teachers valuable tips on using readers theater in the classroom, hints on presentation and props, and a short biography of each featured saint. All scripts are reproducible for classroom use.

What Are People Saying about this Title?
“Spotlight on Saints! Is school theater at its best—modern “morality plays” filled with humor, real choices, and relevant saints…these plays will be a welcome resource for middle grades and junior high!”
Mary Paul McCaughey, OP
Superintendent of Catholic Schools
Archdiocese of Chicago“This book will be a great resource and teaching tool in any religious education program…Jenkins’ experience as a special education teacher shines through. Spotlight on Saints! is terrific!”
Susan Lang Abbott
Director of Religious Education
Archdiocese of Boston

 

Spotlight on Saints! will surely keep children attentive and engaged while they learn how saints can help us in many situations.”
Theresa M. Maugle, SSJ
Recipient, 2007 National Catholic Educational Association Distinguished Principals Award, St. Genevieve School , Flourtown , Pennsylvania

About the author
After twenty years as a special education teacher, Diana R. Jenkins became a freelance writer. She has written more than four hundred stories, comic strips, and articles for children and teens, as well as two earlier books of readers theater plays. Her books Stepping Stones: The Comic Collection and Saints of Note: The Comic Collection will be released in 2009 by Pauline Books & Media. Diana lives in Montgomery , Ohio , with her husband, a medical physicist.

Paperback / 184 pages / Dimensions: 8 1/2″ x 10 3/4″ / ISBN: 0819871192
Retail Price: $18.95