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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Dylan Dog: Dead of Night

By
Kurt Jensen
Source: Catholic News Service

"Dylan Dog: Dead of Night" (Freestyle) may prove that your mother was right when she used to warn you, "Those comic books will rot your brain!" Scenes of mayhem and some language issues, moreover, mark this maladroit screen adaptation of an Italian series of comics as off-limits to its youthful target audience.

The movie's potentially diverting premise holds that the undead—vampires, zombies and the occasional werewolf—co-exist peacefully with the living, and perform useful jobs such as morgue attendant, until something goes wrong that plunges them into murderous behavior.

But director Kevin Munroe and screenwriters Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer drive it all into the ground, hobbled by a low budget that only allows for vampire teeth, some glowing eyes, a few wigs and what appears to be a single werewolf outfit.

Supernatural? It ain't so super, and it's not all that natural, either.

Brandon Routh as private eye Dylan Dog—who prowls through New Orleans to find out why the killing spree has begun with cases involving his client Elizabeth (Anita Briem) and his dead sidekick Marcus (Sam Huntington)—has little to do except for cocking his eyebrows and spouting leaden dialogue.

Typical of the macabre humor occasionally on display is the idea of a "parts shop" where the undead from all over the country can purchase all manner of body parts that have dropped off, or been torn off, during their nights of mayhem.

The film contains considerable action violence, a few drug references and fleeting crude and crass language. 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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Anthony Zaccaria: At the same time that Martin Luther was attacking abuses in the Church, a reformation within the Church was already being attempted. Among the early movers of the Counter-Reformation was Anthony Zaccaria. His mother became a widow at 18 and devoted herself to the spiritual education of her son. He received a medical doctorate at 22 and, while working among the poor of his native Cremona in Italy, was attracted to the religious apostolate. He renounced his rights to any future inheritance, worked as a catechist and was ordained a priest at the age of 26. Called to Milan in a few years, he laid the foundations of three religious congregations, one for men and one for women, plus an association of married couples. Their aim was the reform of the decadent society of their day, beginning with the clergy, religious and lay people. 
<p>Greatly inspired by St. Paul (his congregation is named the Barnabites, after the companion of that saint), Anthony preached with great vigor in church and street, conducted popular missions and was not ashamed of doing public penance. </p><p>He encouraged such innovations as the collaboration of the laity in the apostolate, frequent Communion, the Forty Hours devotion and the ringing of church bells at 3:00 p.m. on Fridays. </p><p>His holiness moved many to reform their lives but, as with all saints, it also moved many to oppose him. Twice his community had to undergo official religious investigation, and twice it was exonerated. </p><p>While on a mission of peace, he became seriously ill and was brought home for a visit to his mother. He died at Cremona at the age of 36.</p> American Catholic Blog Lord, help me make my life more about you and less about me. May others see you in me—your image and likeness. Teach me ways to increase my time with you, my service to others, and my love for my family, for strangers, and for the poor. You are the light in the darkness. With each new day, may we be light to one another.

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