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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Gamer

By
John Mulderig
Source: Catholic News Service


Gerard Butler stars in a scene from the movie "Gamer."
The concept of simulation gaming is taken to brutal and perverse extremes in the futuristic gladiator tale "Gamer" (Lionsgate/Lakeshore).
 
Co-writers and directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor's dystopian mishmash sees wrongly convicted death-row inmate Kable (Gerard Butler) bioengineered for remote control and fighting for his life under the online direction of rich teen Simon (Logan Lerman) in an all-too-real combat game that pits him against other condemned prisoners for the amusement of a worldwide audience.
 
Kable hopes to win the 30 victories that, under the rules, will result in his being freed. But Ken Castle (Michael C. Hall), the evil genius who developed the competition, has other ideas.
 
In between the flying bodies and spurting blood, viewers are given a sample of Castle's other popular amusement in which people who have been similarly altered—including Kable's beloved wife Angie (Amber Valletta)—act out players' sexual fantasies. The resulting flashes of nudity and female-to-female interaction only add to the already obvious message: game over.
 
The film contains constant action violence, much of it gory, mutilation, brief graphic aberrant sexual activity, upper female and rear nudity, a few uses of profanity, and much rough and crude language. 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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Mulderig is on the staff of the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.


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Ansgar: The “apostle of the north” (Scandinavia) had enough frustrations to become a saint—and he did. He became a Benedictine at Corbie, France, where he had been educated. Three years later, when the king of Denmark became a convert, Ansgar went to that country for three years of missionary work, without noticeable success. Sweden asked for Christian missionaries, and he went there, suffering capture by pirates and other hardships on the way. Fewer than two years later, he was recalled, to become abbot of New Corbie (Corvey) and bishop of Hamburg. The pope made him legate for the Scandinavian missions. Funds for the northern apostolate stopped with Emperor Louis’s death. After 13 years’ work in Hamburg, Ansgar saw it burned to the ground by invading Northmen; Sweden and Denmark returned to paganism. 
<p>He directed new apostolic activities in the North, traveling to Denmark and being instrumental in the conversion of another king. By the strange device of casting lots, the king of Sweden allowed the Christian missionaries to return. </p><p>Ansgar’s biographers remark that he was an extraordinary preacher, a humble and ascetical priest. He was devoted to the poor and the sick, imitating the Lord in washing their feet and waiting on them at table. He died peacefully at Bremen, Germany, without achieving his wish to be a martyr. </p><p>Sweden became pagan again after his death, and remained so until the coming of missionaries two centuries later.</p> American Catholic Blog Every vocation is a vocation to sacrifice and to joy. It is a call to the knowledge of God, to the recognition of God as our Father, to joy in the understanding of His mercy.

 
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