This weeks Secular Sunday Matinee is Carrie. Who can resist Stephen King’s work, a young John Travolta, the awesome Sissy Spacek, and the overzealously religious acting of Piper Laurie as Carries mother? “They’re all going to laugh at you!” has been parodied by so many films and television shows, but in reality, this movie touched on some really serious issues regarding mental illness and religious fundamentalism/extremism. From IMDB:
Carrie White is a shy young girl who doesn’t make friends easily. After her class mates taunt her about her horrified reaction to her totally unexpected first period one of them takes pity on her and gets Tommy Ross, her boyfriend and class hunk to invite Carrie to the senior prom. Meanwhile another girl who has been banned from the prom for her continued aggressive behaviour is not as forgiving and plans a trick to embarrass Carrie in front of the whole school. What she doesn’t realise is that Carrie is … gifted, and you really don’t want to get her angry.
Loveless, jobless, possibly terminally ill, Frank has had enough of the downward spiral of America. With nothing left to lose, Frank takes his gun and offs the stupidest, cruelest, and most repellent members of society. He finds an unusual accomplice: 16-year-old Roxy, who shares his sense of rage and disenfranchisement.
The Secular Nerd:
This movie did not disappoint at all. It touched on the world we live in today, and showed what one man who has had enough and had nothing to live for would do. I’d never support something like this in real life, but to creatively and imaginatively think about it? Absolutely. It spoke volumes on things we may be too afraid to admit to.
This movie is based off the novel written by Carl Sagan which was published in 1985. Ann Druyan, his wife co-produced it. If you haven’t seen the movie or at least read the novel, you need to get on that. I recommend it to anyone who has an appreciation for Astronomy and Science Fiction.
Astronomer Dr. Ellie Arroway has long been interested in contact to faraway lands, a love fostered in her childhood by her father, Ted Arroway, who passed away when she was nine years old leaving her then orphaned. Her current work in monitoring for extraterrestrial life is based on that love and is in part an homage to her father. Ever since funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) was pulled on her work, which is referred to some, including her NSF superior David Drumlin, as more science fiction than science, Ellie, with a few of her rogue scientist colleagues, have looked for funding from where ever they could get it to continue their work. When Ellie and her colleagues hear chatter originating from the vicinity of the star Vega, Ellie feels vindicated. But that vindication is short lived when others, including politicians, the military, religious leaders and other scientists such as Drumlin, try to take over her work. When the messages received from space are decoded, the project takes on a whole new dimension, which strengthens for Ellie the quest for the truth. Thrown into the mix are the unknown person who has up until now funded most of Ellie’s work and what his motivations are, and Palmer Joss, a renowned author and theologian, who despite their fundamental differences in outlook, is mutually attracted to Ellie, that attraction based in part on intellect and their common goal of wanting to know the truth.
If you are looking for some slapstick comedy, blasphemous zingers, and all around fun this Sunday, then Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life is for you. Enjoy such hits like “Every Sperm Is Sacred” and the “Galaxy Song“!
Why are we here, what’s it all about? The Monty Python-team is trying to sort out the most important question on Earth: what is the meaning of life? They do so by exploring the various stages of life, starting with birth. A doctor seems more interested in his equipment than in delivering the baby or caring for the mother, a Roman Catholic couple have quite a lot of children because ‘every sperm is sacred’. In the growing and learning part of life, catholic schoolboys attend a rather strange church service and ditto sex education lesson. Onto war, where an officer’s plan to attack is thwarted by his underlings wanting to celebrate his birthday and an officer’s leg is bitten off by presumably an African tiger. At middle age a couple orders ‘philosophy’ at a restaurant, after which the film continues with live organ transplants. The autumn years are played in a restaurant, which, after being treated to the song ‘Isn’t It Awfully Nice to Have a Penis?’ by an entertainer, sees the arrival of an extremely fat man. He can eat a lot, but also throw up quite copiously. The Grim Reaper brings for the final stage of human life, death, a visit to a mansion, where the people are rather interested in him. But life doesn’t stop at death. It’s onto heaven, where it’s always Christmas.
Our first Secular Sunday Matinée is Paul. When I first saw this movie, I thought it was going to be completely ridiculous but I’m a huge fan of almost the entire cast and decided to give it a shot. I was not disappointed at all. From IMDB:
Two sci-fi geeks take a pilgrimage to America’s UFO heartland. While there, they accidentally meet an alien who brings them on an insane road trip that alters their universe forever. For the past 60 years, an alien named Paul (voiced by Seth Rogen) has been hanging out at a top-secret military base. When he discovers he’s been taken prisoner, the space-traveling smart ass decides to escape the compound and hop on the first vehicle out of town – a rented RV containing Earthlings Graeme Willy (Simon Pegg) and Clive Gollings (Nick Frost). Chased by federal agents and the fanatical father of a young woman that they accidentally kidnap, Graeme and Clive hatch a fumbling escape plan to return Paul to his mother ship. And as two nerds struggle to help, one little green man might just take his fellow outcasts from misfits to intergalactic heroes. Written by Universal Pictures