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Paths of Glory: Virtue in the Face of Consequence


Few movies affect me on an emotional level enough to stop and re-evaluate my own perspective in life. One of those films, is Stanley Kubrick’s Paths of Glory. In life we try to justify what is fair through our own virtues. It’s is how we face the conequences of our actions that defines our integrity. In just eighty seven minutes, Kubrick tackles the topic of situational ethics and facing unfair consequences with perfection through the eyes of French soldiers in World War One.

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Paul, Apostle of Christ

As a rule, I’m not much for spiritual movies. No, not spiritually rich films by any means, because that’s the bread and butter to our praise factor here at Cross Culture. No, we’re not talking about in themes, but rather in brand. Growing up the likes of Facing the Giants and their kind made me cringe to no end (as I’ve proclaimed from the mountain top no less than 50 times). The message and production in equal levels left much to be desired, and that’s even being rather conservative on the matter. But it seems that every once in a while, a film comes along that shows glimmers of hope to this spotty industry. Paul, Apostle of Christ is one such film, and it is a heartily warm welcome for these sore eyes.

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Avengers: Infinity War

With their third entry into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Russo brothers have seemingly perfected the Marvel formula.

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Music

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Underoath: Erase Me

Christian metalheads have an ax to grind, and its name is Underoath.

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BØRNS – Blue Madonna

Garrett Borns has been brought down to the blue blue earth.
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Foo Fighters: Concrete and Gold

If you were hoping for something new from the newest album by the Seattle-bred Foo Fighters, well, this isn’t quite your album.  Concrete and Gold isn’t exactly bad, and it even has its better moments, but it brings nothing new to the table, nor does have any discernible thematic focus.

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TV Shows

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Cultural Atheism in ‘Britannia’

A partially successful meld of history and fantasy, Amazon’s Britannia seeks its audience through a “Game of Thrones lite” approach, with one eye on paganism and the other on Nietzsche.

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‘Broadchurch’ Tackles Rape & Pornography with Purpose

In a culture that harbors the Harvey Weinsteins and Kevin Spaceys of the world, sexual assault has gained an increased awareness as of late.  Too few stories, however, have highlighted not just the evil of rape, but the social values that contribute to its prevalence.  Broadchurch is the exception.

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Stranger Things 2: Strength in Numbers

The binge-worthy fan favorite Stranger Things has hit screens again for a second season, to a great deal of fanfare.  And while this season does not contain as many allusions to faith, it does contain some valuable themes related to community.

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Books

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Star Wars: Thrawn Begins

Thrawn is back. His presence in the Star Wars: Rebels animated series has made quite a splash. It’s been fun seeing him on the the show and Rebels has done a great job with the character’s onscreen appearances, but now comes the moment we’ve been waiting for. It’s time for the Grand Admiral to return to his roots: the literary wing of the Star Wars franchise. There is no one more qualified to usher him in than Timothy Zahn. Fortunately for us, that’s exactly who got the job. Thrawn, the most anticipated novel in the new Star Wars canon, is here.

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American Gods: An Atheist Theology

Neil Gaiman’s award-winning novel has made some significant cultural waves in its more than ten years of publication, now resulting in a comic book series and an upcoming cable television series.  Unfortunately, that influence is patently negative, propagating a distinctly atheist approach to religion, theology, and culture.

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Tolkien’s LOTR: Reasons To Love It

For over ten years, I have been in love with Lord of the Rings. J.R.R. Tolkien’s literary prowess is legendary, and each time I read his brilliant epic, I find myself loving it even more.

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Comics

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Attack on Titan: Vol. 6

The Attack on Titan series had, in its inception, a great deal of thematic depth.  The titans can be seen to represent sin, and particularly with Eren’s ability to become a titan, the idea of mankind as being the very monsters they fight has a lot to say about morality and humanity.  Unfortunately, by volume six, the series has started to rely on that initial setup as a crutch, and fails to add new intrigue to the story.

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Old Man Logan

Since its release, the film Logan has been widely considered among consideration for the best film in the X-Men franchise.  The Mark Millar comic that it was based on, Old Man Logan, deserves similar consideration.

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Attack on Titan: Vol. 5

As Attack on Titan‘s plot develops, the story becomes increasingly political, with social commentary galore.  Much of that is positive, but not all of it; especially when the series touches on religion.

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Video Games

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Skyrim: The Ethics of Player Choice in Open World RPG

From “Arrow in the Knee” memes to sidequest distractions, Skyrim has created a gaming subculture that is all its own.  For better or for worse, the game (and the Elder Scrolls series) has had an impact on the culture.  But which is it?

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News Roundup, 9/7

Take a look at news and developments from the past few weeks!

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Five Reasons Video Games are not the Devil

Media can be used for great good.  But, as we all know, it can do great harm as well.  That’s really in the message more than the medium, but there are certain forms of media that have gotten a really bad rap.  Video Games is one of them.  But, contrary to what many may think, video games are not inherently harmful.  Here are five reasons why.

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