Journal of Religion and Film


Vol. 7 No. 1 April 2003


[1] I want to take this opportunity to thank all of the readers of JR&F for their condolences and expressions of sympathy on the death of my colleague and co-editor, Ron Burke. I appreciate each and every one of these at a very difficult and despairing time. Thank you.

[2] With this issue of JR&F I am delighted to announce that Kathy Schwartz has been named Managing Editor of The Journal of Religion & Film. As many of our readers know, Kathy has been an integral part of JR&F since she began work in the Department of Philosophy and Religion. Naming her Managing Editor is in part a way of recognizing the many contributions that Kathy makes to the continued success of the Journal.

[3] I also want to take this opportunity to thank Julie Hodgson and Julien Fielding for their distinguished service as interns for JR&F. Julie was a tremendous help last summer when things were particularly bleak and Julien has been working for us since last fall and she will continue to do so until the end of this school year. So much journal work got done because of both the hard work and the enthusiasm of both Julie and Julien.

[4] Finally, after Ron's death I discovered that we worked quite independently of each other on many matters. The result of this is that some materials may have been lost in the transition. If you have sent us material and not heard back from us I suggest that you contact us to check on the status of your material.

In this issue...

[5] JR&F does not have a budget for attending Robert Redford's Sundance Film Festival. Occasionally friends of the Journal attend Sundance on their own and when this occurs they have graciously sent us a "Report from Sundance." This year is one of those occasions. In this issue Elyse Sara, presently an independent filmmaker and formerly an intern for JR&F, submits her report from Sundance.

[6] Also in this issue Julien Fielding provides an interview with Sherman Alexie and Chris Eyre on Native American religion and film. I think you will be surprised to see how these two Native filmmakers approach religion in their films.

[7] Decalogue is a series of one-hour films by Krzysztof Kieślowski, one of Poland's most distinguished filmmakers. Each film deals with one of the Ten Commandments. Originally shown on Polish television in 1988, Decalogue is now available in North America. In his essay, John Grondelski explores Kieślowski's approach to the first commandment in D-I. Grondelski also examines Kieślowski's understanding of ethics in interpersonal relationships, a theme that runs throughout Decalogue.

[8] In their essay, S. Brent Plate and Tod Linafelt consider the idea that apocalypse may be understood not in terms of the end of the world (i.e., the entire world), but rather the end of a world. To this end, the authors examine apocalyptic predictions in the New Testament and the movies Strange Days and Until the End of the World.

[9] Simon Taylor discusses the idea of salvation in Abel Ferrara's movie, Bad Lieutenant, starring Harvey Keitel. The movie, Taylor argues, offers both a narrative and a theology of salvation, both of which are flawed. The flaws of these accounts of salvation are important to a better understanding of the nature of Christian salvation.

[10] Moses has been the subject of a number of Hollywood movies. In his essay, G. Andrew Tooze discusses four of the most famous and familiar Moses movies. Cecil B. DeMille produced two movies entitled, Ten Commandments, one in 1923 and a remake in 1956. The other movies Tooze considers are the 1996 made for television movie, Moses, and the 1998 animated feature, Prince of Egypt. Tooze shows that Moses is quite different in each of the movies and argues that these differences are designed to meet the particular needs of the filmmaker.

[11] Finally, in the third of a series of articles, Anton Karl Kozlovic explores the unholy subtexts in Superman: The Movie (1978) and Superman II (1981). Kozlovic previously considered Superman as a Christ figure (JR&F, vol. 6, no. 1, April, 2002) and holy biblical subtexts in the Superman movies (JR&F, vol. 6, no. 2, October, 2002). In this article Kozlovic identifies those subtexts that point to evil in contrast to what is holy.


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