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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Harsh Times

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Grim and gritty urban drama about a psychologically unstable soldier (Christian Bale) who, returning home to Los Angeles after serving in Iraq, reverts to his former street-thug ways and whose fracturing mental frame precipitates a self-destructive spiral of violence and crime into which he drags his best friend (Freddy Rodriguez), much to the dismay of the latter's lawyer girlfriend (Eva Longoria). Bale's explosive and scarily credible performance notwithstanding, the action is bleak and brutish, compounded by the script's nihilism and morally problematic ending, which undermines whatever writer-director David Ayer may be trying to say about the culture of violence, including its desensitizing effect, especially on those in combat. Pervasive rough and crude language and profanity, intense and graphic violence, some disturbing images, a mercy killing, drug content and a suggested sexual encounter. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is O -- morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

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Rose of Viterbo: Rose achieved sainthood in only 18 years of life. Even as a child Rose had a great desire to pray and to aid the poor. While still very young, she began a life of penance in her parents’ house. She was as generous to the poor as she was strict with herself. At the age of 10 she became a Secular Franciscan and soon began preaching in the streets about sin and the sufferings of Jesus.
<p>Viterbo, her native city, was then in revolt against the pope. When Rose took the pope’s side against the emperor, she and her family were exiled from the city. When the pope’s side won in Viterbo, Rose was allowed to return. Her attempt at age 15 to found a religious community failed, and she returned to a life of prayer and penance in her father’s home, where she died in 1251. Rose was canonized in 1457.</p> American Catholic Blog Obedience is not a joke, it is a sacrifice. The more you love God, the more you will obey. Obedience is a cross—pick up your cross and follow him. Everyone in the world has to obey in some way or another. People are forced to obey or they will lose their jobs. But we obey out of love for Jesus.

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