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Q&A with Alexandra Pelosi on “The Trials of Ted Haggard”

posted by Patton Dodd

Alexandra Pelosi is the talented filmmaker behind “The Trials of Ted Haggard”–though, as she put it in the New York Times yesterday, she prefers to be considered a maker of television, not documentaries. Fair enough, as her light, earthy, humanizing […]

No Best Picture for Wall-E

posted by Patton Dodd

Oscar has fickle and pedestrian taste, and the awards are rarely an indication of a movie’s potential shelf life or artistic merit. (See: Crash. Or, if you haven’t, don’t.) I was shocked when Atonement didn’t win last year, because its […]

The Top Comfort Movies

posted by Patton Dodd

Movie Mom blogger Neil Minow put together a list of the top Comfort Movies–flicks that go down just right on those no-good, crummy, sniffling, sneezing days. Not a bad list, and hard to quibble with something as idiosyncratic as this. […]

Stanley Fish’s Top 10 American Movies

posted by Patton Dodd

That’s the top story on the NY Times Most Emailed List right now (another list that never fails to fascinate–subject for another post). Stanley Fish is a hugely influential literary and legal scholar, and I’ve long been an admirer–but Fish […]

Previous Posts

The Last Text Message
Today is my last day with Beliefnet, and my last day as the author of this blog. The Text Messages archives will remain live at this location, but posting will cease. If that sounds gloomy, it's an accurate reflection of my mind this afternoon. I've chosen to pursue new opportunities, but I'm n

posted 3:47:12pm Feb. 04, 2009 | read full post »

Quitting Church: A Q&A with Julia Duin
Why do people stop going to church? This big question is the subject of Julia Duin's small book, Quitting Church: Why teh Faithful are Fleeing and What To Do About It. Duin is not a disinterested observer of the phenomenon of church-dropping; rather, she's a churchgoer who wants churches to work wel

posted 4:03:51pm Feb. 03, 2009 | read full post »

Rob Stennett vs. Marilynne Robinson
I'm overjoyed that my good friend Rob Stennett has won the Award of Merit from Christianity Today for his novel The Almost True Story of Ryan Fisher. (Here's CT's review of the book.) Stennett's hilarious book is about a real estate agent who joins a suburban church in order to reach the Christian h

posted 2:36:44pm Jan. 30, 2009 | read full post »

What is spiritual restoration?
Slate asked for an essay on Ted Haggard's spiritual restoration. I'm okay with what I came up with for now, but the more I think about it, the more I think we need better thinking on what restoration looks like for very public, outspoken, influential men and women like Haggard:Most people who fail n

posted 9:00:56am Jan. 29, 2009 | read full post »

It's Not TV; it's Ted TV
A blog might not be the best medium for an essay like this. But I want to offer some more considered thoughts on Ted Haggard and his HBO documentary; I hope this performs some kind of service in a story that I hope will end--in its public iteration--very soon. This was written as a stand-alone essay

posted 3:57:44am Jan. 28, 2009 | read full post »

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