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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Night Watch (Nochnoi Dozor)

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Source: Catholic News Service

Visually splashy but violent adaptation of book one of Russian author Sergei Lukyanenko's best-selling fantasy trilogy set in modern Moscow, about a young man (Konstantin Khabensky) drawn into a battle between the forces of light and darkness, whose uneasy millennial truce is threatened by a prophesied child (Dima Martynov) who, in choosing sides, will tip the balance of power forever and usher in the apocalypse. Director Timur Bekmambetov's supernatural smorgasbord incorporates familiar themes of good versus evil, but the surprising pro-life sentiment implicit in several scenes is undercut by the overall gory mayhem and convoluted plot. Much strong but stylized bloody violence, a bathing scene involving brief top female nudity, sorcery and assorted supernatural elements, as well as scattered rough and crude language. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L -- limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.



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First Martyrs of the Church of Rome: There were Christians in Rome within a dozen or so years after the death of Jesus, though they were not the converts of the “Apostle of the Gentiles” (Romans 15:20). Paul had not yet visited them at the time he wrote his great letter in 57-58 A.D.. 
<p>There was a large Jewish population in Rome. Probably as a result of controversy between Jews and Jewish Christians, the Emperor Claudius expelled all Jews from Rome in 49-50 A.D. Suetonius the historian says that the expulsion was due to disturbances in the city “caused by the certain Chrestus” [Christ]. Perhaps many came back after Claudius’s death in 54 A.D. Paul’s letter was addressed to a Church with members from Jewish and Gentile backgrounds. </p><p>In July of 64 A.D., more than half of Rome was destroyed by fire. Rumor blamed the tragedy on Nero, who wanted to enlarge his palace. He shifted the blame by accusing the Christians. According to the historian Tacitus, many Christians were put to death because of their “hatred of the human race.” Peter and Paul were probably among the victims. </p><p>Threatened by an army revolt and condemned to death by the senate, Nero committed suicide in 68 A.D. at the age of 31.</p> American Catholic Blog People are not perfect. But God does not only call upon great saints to reveal his love for the world. He also calls the broken and desperate. We are all called to act as God’s light in this darkening world.

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