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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Skyline

By
Kurt Jensen
Source: Catholic News Service


Fighter jets attack an alien ship in the science-fiction thriller "Skyline."
There's a single fascinating moment in "Skyline" (Universal), an otherwise forgettable (but with sequels to come!) apocalyptic yarn about aliens who invade Los Angeles with the munchies for humans.

A giant insectlike spaceship sucks thousands of computer-generated sticklike people into the sky like a giant vacuum. This being a low-budget production, it's a brief special effect. But it's one of those rare New Testament moments in a horror film.

Fundamentalist Christians, especially, as well as Catholics, will instantly recognize it as looking like the rapture described in Chapter 4, Verses 14-17 of the First Letter to the Thessalonians, in which the dead in Christ will rise.

Too bad the rest of it is so dull. With their appetite not sated by the initial smorgasbord, the slimy aliens, also insectlike, break out to see what they can find on the a la carte menu, trapping a handful of frightened people, among them Jarrod (Eric Balfour), Elaine (Scottie Thompson), Candice (Brittany Daniel) and Terry (Donald Faison) in a high-rise apartment building.

They're hankering after human brains, although directing brothers Colin and Greg Strause and screenwriters Joshua Cordes and Liam O'Donnell don't bother to explain why. No one even seems to know from whence the aliens came, and not even nuclear weapons can stop them.

The film contains fleeting crass language, a single profanity, a single implied instance of premarital sex, and darkly lit aliens eating glowing human brains. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III—adults. 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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Alphonsus Rodriguez: Tragedy and challenge beset today’s saint early in life, but Alphonsus Rodriguez found happiness and contentment through simple service and prayer. 
<p>Born in Spain in 1533, Alphonsus inherited the family textile business at 23. Within the space of three years, his wife, daughter and mother died; meanwhile, business was poor. Alphonsus stepped back and reassessed his life. He sold the business and, with his young son, moved into his sisters’ home. There he learned the discipline of prayer and meditation. </p><p>Years later, at the death of his son, Alphonsus, almost 40 by then, sought to join the Jesuits. He was not helped by his poor education. He applied twice before being admitted. For 45 years he served as doorkeeper at the Jesuits’ college in Majorca. When not at his post, he was almost always at prayer, though he often encountered difficulties and temptations. </p><p>His holiness and prayerfulness attracted many to him, including St. Peter Claver, then a Jesuit seminarian. Alphonsus’s life as doorkeeper may have been humdrum, but he caught the attention of poet and fellow-Jesuit Gerard Manley Hopkins, who made him the subject of one of his poems. </p><p>Alphonsus died in 1617. He is the patron saint of Majorca.</p> American Catholic Blog People mess up, and it’s especially hard to watch as our children and other young people go down paths we know are likely to lead to heartbreak. Providing gentle guidance when it’s needed, and love even when that guidance isn’t followed, helps them to start fresh.

 
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