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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Knockaround Guys

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Source: Catholic News Service

Cautionary tale in which four young Brooklyn mob toughs (including Barry Pepper and Vin Diesel) end up in Montana where one has lost a bag of mob money, drawing the greedy, deadly interest of the local sheriff (Tom Noonan) and mob higher-ups (including John Malkovich). Written and directed by Brian Koppelman and David Levien, the ugly drama points to the corrosiveness of the criminal life and ends on a partially redemptive note. Brutal beatings and shootings, some profanity, constant rough language and brief drug abuse. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops classification is A-IV -- adults, with reservations. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted.



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Augustine of Hippo: A Christian at 33, a priest at 36, a bishop at 41: Many people are familiar with the biographical sketch of Augustine of Hippo, sinner turned saint. But really to get to know the man is a rewarding experience. 
<p>There quickly surfaces the intensity with which he lived his life, whether his path led away from or toward God. The tears of his mother, the instructions of Ambrose and, most of all, God himself speaking to him in the Scriptures redirected Augustine’s love of life to a life of love. </p><p>Having been so deeply immersed in creature-pride of life in his early days and having drunk deeply of its bitter dregs, it is not surprising that Augustine should have turned, with a holy fierceness, against the many demon-thrusts rampant in his day. His times were truly decadent—politically, socially, morally. He was both feared and loved, like the Master. The perennial criticism leveled against him: a fundamental rigorism. </p><p>In his day, he providentially fulfilled the office of prophet. Like Jeremiah and other greats, he was hard-pressed but could not keep quiet. “I say to myself, I will not mention him,/I will speak in his name no more./But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart,/imprisoned in my bones;/I grow weary holding it in,/I cannot endure it” (Jeremiah 20:9).</p> American Catholic Blog Pope Francis said, “The Church gives us the life of faith in Baptism: that is the moment in which she gives birth to us as children of God, the moment she gives us the life of God, she engenders us as a mother would.”

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