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Good Shepherd Film Discussion Series

Author: Scott Puthoff/Monday, August 1, 2022/Categories: Member Resources Categories

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The Good Shepherd Film Discussion Series is for folks interested in watching a good movie and learning a thing or two in the process.  The group meets in the Fellowship Hall at Good Shepherd once per month on Saturdays at 6:15 pm (either the 2nd or 3rd Saturday of the month - see the schedule below for details).  Films are generally rated PG-13, although the occasional R-rated film will be shown provided the content and subject matter are appropriate to an adult church discussion group.

This year's film series theme is "Do the Right Thing (The Choices We Make)".  Doug McConnell, event organizer, provides a description of the types of movies we'll be watching this year: "Decisions, decisions, decisions…..we make so many in the course of a day! Some decisions seem rather minor in importance, but others are far more significant. At times, these decisions will affect the lives and well-being of others. Our new Good Shepherd film discussion series will examine this issue as it relates to our Christian faith. Sometimes, the issue at hand will involve clear social and moral issues. At other times, the struggle may be more personal in nature. How does one go about doing the “right thing,” even if this path is sometimes fraught with conflict, stress, or even danger? "

Some snacks are provided at each session and folks are invited to bring their dinner or other snacks to enjoy.  The sessions are open to both member and non-members, so bring a film-loving friend!

The films for the 2022-2023 Film Series are:

  • September 17: A Man for All Seasons (1966) King Henry VIII wants to marry again, removing Catherine of Spain from his sight in favor of a young and vivacious Anne Boleyn. Do you go along with the King or stand up for what is right? Enter Sir Thomas More……a classic historical drama from 1966 that won the Oscar for Best Picture, and another one for Paul Scofield in the title role.
  • October 8th: High Noon (1952) Will Kane is getting married on the last day of his job as the town sheriff. But then bad news arrives: Frank Miller is coming in on the noon train to seek revenge against Will for being sent to prison. Do you get out of town while you can, or put that tin star back on your shirt?  The film features Gary Cooper in an Oscar-winning role, Grace Kelly, and a wonderful supporting cast. A favorite film in the White House screening room, from Eisenhower to Clinton.
  • November 12th: The Verdict (1982) Frank Galvin is depressed. He is also an alcoholic. His career as a lawyer passed him by years ago. A colleague finds him a sure-fire winner of a case; all that Frank must is show up in court, go through the motions, and collect a nice fee. But what happens when you realize that doing the right thing means giving up the booze and taking some serious risks instead? A tale of darkness and redemption starring Paul Newman, who should have won an Oscar for this role!
  • December 10th: Eye in the Sky (2015) In Nairobi, Kenya, English and American authorities have used modern technology to locate the safehouse of a terrorist organization. Authorities can prevent a damaging suicide bomber mission from succeeding if they destroy the safehouse and its inhabitants right away. The mission begins, but then a piece of collateral damage appears at the site, a young girl who is selling bread to help her family. Can the authorities live with the death of an innocent child in order to be able to save others? A British production with Helen Mirren and Alan Rickman, in his final onscreen role.
  • January 14th: Fill the Void (2012) Shira Mendelman is a young Hasidic woman living in Israel. Tragedy strikes suddenly; Shira’s older sister Esther dies in childbirth. The child survives, but the Orthodox tradition mandates that the Shira’s husband Yochay remarry as soon as possible. A potential partner from Belgium emerges, but the family doesn’t want to see Yochay and his child leave the community. Could Shira marry her sister’s husband instead? The family may agree, but Shira must decide for herself.
  • February 11th: The Sea Inside (2004) A diving accident leaves young Rámon Sampedro paralyzed from the neck down; he will have to depend on his family for the rest of his life. He finds this situation to be unacceptable and petitions the court for the right to end his life. Ramon’s family and friends are devastated by his decision. Should they support him?  Starring Javier Bardem, the film is based on a true story; it won an Oscar for Best Foreign Language film.
  • March 11th: Up in the Air (2009): Ryan Bingham works for a consulting company whose mission is to provide large companies with “termination assistance.” In his spare time, he provides motivational speeches for those souls who are looking for direction in their lives. But Ryan himself is starting to have second thoughts about his own life; does it lack purpose? Has he made the right personal decisions? With George Clooney, Anna Kendrick and Vera Farmiga
  • April 15th: I Never Sang for My Father (1970): College professor Gene Garrison has a chance at happiness; he loves a woman named Peggy Thayer and wants to move to California, where she has her medical practice. But his family ties include a self-centered father who is counting on Gene to be on call for years to come. His sister Alice is not on good terms with her father. She tells Gene to go to California and not look back. What’s a devoted son to do? Based on a play by Robert Anderson, the film features Gene Hackman and Melvyn Douglas.
  • May 20th: The Front (1976): It is the 1950s and the McCarthy era is in full swing: Hollywood writers of a liberal bent find themselves branded as Communists and are banned from working in Hollywood. What’s the solution? Find yourself a “front.” You write the script; the front represents you by pretending to be a writer, and both of you gain income.  How many black-listed writers can you take on at a time (assuming that you can live with the lies, of course?) With Woody Allen, Michael Murphy and Zero Mostel. Directed by Martin Ritt, who was a victim of the infamous blacklist.
  • June 10th: Casablanca (1942): “In all the gin joints, in all the towns, in all the world, she walks into mine…” So begins the journey of Rick Blaine, a roguish café owner, who is willing to let the world fight its own battles without him until Ilsa Lund shows up at his door……you must remember this, Hollywood’s most famous Do the Right Thing movie! With Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid, Claude Rains, Peter Lorre …and yes, it too won an Oscar for Best Picture.

Questions or want to be put on the email list?  Contact event organizer, Doug McConnell at dmcconne@heidelberg.edu.

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