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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

A Perfect Getaway

By
John Mulderig
Source: Catholic News Service

The natural splendors of a remote area of Hawaii provide the backdrop for director David Twohy's not-so-splendid thriller "A Perfect Getaway" (Rogue). After a reasonably intriguing central plot twist—though one that fails to jibe entirely with what has gone before—the shifty drama degenerates, becoming overwrought in tone and excessively violent in content.
 
As they head for the beautiful, but isolated Kalalau Valley on the island of Kauai, hiking honeymooners Cliff (Steve Zahn) and Cydney (Milla Jovovich) learn that the couple wanted in a series of recent, well-publicized murders may have fled to the region. So when Kale (Chris Hemsworth) and Cleo (Marley Shelton), a pair of creepy hitchhikers they had refused to pick up earlier, suspiciously and threateningly resurface, the newlyweds are unnerved.
 
Pressing on, they cross paths with friendly, talkative Iraq War veteran Nick (Timothy Olyphant), whose company they initially find reassuring. But his trail leads to girlfriend Gina (Kiele Sanchez), and it's not long before his tall tales of combat prowess and her dexterity with a butcher knife—exhibited to gruesome effect on a goat Nick has felled with a bow and arrow—have Cliff and Cydney worrying again.
 
Zahn's skillful impersonation of twitchy, nerdy Cliff, a Hollywood screenwriter easily overshadowed and intimidated by Nick's real-life exploits, heightens the atmosphere of uncertainty. But objectionable elements include not only the climactic bloodletting, but a prolonged skinny-dipping scene and a murky tide of four-letter words.
 
The film contains considerable action violence, some of it gory, cohabitation, drug use, rear and partial nudity, a half-dozen uses of profanity, and much 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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Mulderig is on the staff of the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.




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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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