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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Killers

By
Kurt Jensen
Source: Catholic News Service

NEW YORK (CNS)—"Killers" (Lionsgate) is very much the definition of mindless fun, if you enjoy virtually any of Ashton Kutcher's antics.

Director Robert Luketic and screenwriters Bob DeRosa and Ted Griffin play explosions, gunfire and car crashes by rote in this lightweight combination of marital comedy and espionage thriller, which is alternately derived, borrowed and outright filched from "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" and many others of the genre.

If you're not familiar with that film, you'll neither notice nor mind, something the filmmakers evidently are counting on. However, the comic bickering between Kutcher and co-star Katherine Heigl, which is supposed to be the bright shining center, is mostly stale and insipid. No wisecracking classic, this.

Kutcher plays Spencer Aimes, a glamorous killer-for-hire used by American intelligence agencies. He meets Jen Kornfeldt (Heigl), a prim computer analyst with overprotective parents (Tom Selleck and Catherine O'Hara), while they're all in Nice, France, and he's on a job.

He and Jen quickly fall in love, he sees a chance to get out of the assassin trade, and three years later and now married, he runs a contracting firm in suburban Atlanta, with her parents living nearby. They try to live a quiet, upscale domestic life surrounded by a panoply of comic hobgoblin neighbors.

Here comes the twist: Spencer now has a $20 million bounty on his head, and the neighbors are all embedded assassins, impressively deft with weaponry and speeding pickup trucks. Shoot-'em-up high jinks, occasionally comedic, ensue.

The film contains fleeting crass language, mild sexual banter, and all violence is played for comic effect, making this acceptable for older adolescents. The Catholic News Service classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

******
Kurt Jensen is a guest reviewer for Catholic News Service.


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Augustine of Canterbury: In the year 596, some 40 monks set out from Rome to evangelize the Anglo-Saxons in England. Leading the group was Augustine, the prior of their monastery in Rome. Hardly had he and his men reached Gaul (France) when they heard stories of the ferocity of the Anglo-Saxons and of the treacherous waters of the English Channel. Augustine returned to Rome and to the pope who had sent them—St. Gregory the Great (September 3 )—only to be assured by him that their fears were groundless. 
<p>Augustine again set out. This time the group crossed the English Channel and landed in the territory of Kent, ruled by King Ethelbert, a pagan married to a Christian, Bertha. Ethelbert received them kindly, set up a residence for them in Canterbury and within the year, on Pentecost Sunday, 597, was himself baptized. After being consecrated a bishop in France, Augustine returned to Canterbury, where he founded his see. He constructed a church and monastery near where the present cathedral, begun in 1070, now stands. As the faith spread, additional sees were established at London and Rochester. </p><p>Work was sometimes slow and Augustine did not always meet with success. Attempts to reconcile the Anglo-Saxon Christians with the original Briton Christians (who had been driven into western England by Anglo-Saxon invaders) ended in dismal failure. Augustine failed to convince the Britons to give up certain Celtic customs at variance with Rome and to forget their bitterness, helping him evangelize their Anglo-Saxon conquerors </p><p>Laboring patiently, Augustine wisely heeded the missionary principles—quite enlightened for the times—suggested by Pope Gregory the Great: purify rather than destroy pagan temples and customs; let pagan rites and festivals be transformed into Christian feasts; retain local customs as far as possible. The limited success Augustine achieved in England before his death in 605, a short eight years after he arrived in England, would eventually bear fruit long after in the conversion of England. Augustine of Canterbury can truly be called the “Apostle of England.”</p> American Catholic Blog When we go through pain it is easy to feel abandoned or forgotten, but suffering doesn’t mean God doesn’t love us, He does. Even Jesus suffered, and He was completely without sin.

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