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Screening Room: “Son of God,” “Non-Stop,” “The Wind Rises”

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1. SON OF GOD (PG-13)
20th Century Fox

"Son of God” is a feature film about the life of Christ that’s been distilled from footage from the recent hit TV mini-series, “The Bible". Although reverent and well-intentioned, it will likely receive some criticism from Biblical purists. Also, it has edited out footage of Satan because the actor who portrayed the Prince of Darkness in the TV series looked a bit too much like President Obama.

I remember that. That was a huge controversy.

Portuguese actor Diogo Morgado gives an affecting performance as Jesus and the film establishes a devout tone. But the greatest story ever told has been told much better in a number of previous films. “The Son of God” is dutiful, but uninspired.

RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: Did Not Screen

2. NON-STOP (PG-13)
Universal Pictures

Liam Neeson isn't the savior but he be saving people. This time they are all aboard a plane in "Non-Stop." Just don't understand. If you are a bad guy and see Liam Neeson on the plane why don't you cancel your terror plot? He's gonna stop you, get his daughter back, fight off a pack of wolves. But Liam does what Liam does and he delivers in "Non-Stop" which never takes flight but gets you to your destination.

RUSS: Did not screen
SHAWN: 3 Popcorn Bags

Walt Disney Pictures

Famed Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki’s latest and perhaps last work, “The Wind Rises,” is a beautifully rendered, old school, hand drawn work that’s a nominee for this year’s Oscar for Best Animated Feature. It tells the fictionalized story of a real-life Japanese man who designed aircraft for the Imperial Empire.

Yes, the animation is brilliant but overall this is an experience strictly for hardcore film geeks.

"The Wind Rises” is a bit slow-moving and over long, so it’s really not a cartoon for kids, but it’s an impressive showcase of visual storytelling by a master of the craft.

It's not for kids at all. Or many other people.

RUSS: 4 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 3 Popcorn Bags

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