Busted Halo
Features : Entertainment & Lifestyle
 
facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailfacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
August 12th, 2008
Novelist Clyde Edgerton Considers Faith, Fundamentalism, and Free Thinking

Best-selling author Clyde Edgerton’s ninth novel, The Bible Salesman (Little, Brown), is the story of Preston Clearwater, a car thief who picks up hitchhiker Henry Dampier, a 19-year-old Bible salesman.
When Clearwater offers Dampier a lift on the road in post-war North Carolina, he convinces Dampier he is an FBI agent in need of an associate. Dampier joyfully seizes the opportunity to lead a double life as both a bible salesman and a G-man.
But Dampier’s fundamentalist upbringing doesn’t prepare him for the complexities of his new life. He falls in love, questions his religious training, begins to see he’s being used, and realizes that he is now on his own in a way he never imagined.
David…

August 11th, 2008
Andre Dubus III, the author of The House of Sand and Fog, takes on terrorism

After the attacks of September 11th, it seemed like everyone was asking the same question: Why do they (the terrorists) hate us (Americans)? Some offered various answers, and some argued the answer didn’t matter. What mattered was that the terrorists killed lots of Americans and now Americans should kill lots of terrorists. For a while trying to learn why the terrorists hate us seemed like giving them credibility. But now Andre Dubus III’s new novel, The Garden of Last Days…, takes a long, hard look at why one fictional terrorist hates Americans so much. Dubus follows Bassam, a 9/11 hijacker, from a strip club in Florida all the way through the checkpoint at Boston’s Logan International Airport, giving readers

August 1st, 2008
Why Our Superheroes Keep Getting Edgier

Once upon a time, superheroes were simple.
Superman was virtually invulnerable; he fought for “Truth, justice, and the American way.” Batman was a handsome billionaire playboy, dishing out punishment to a deserving criminal underworld. Wonder Woman, Captain America, and Captain Marvel fought evil robots, mind-controlling worms, and scurrilous Nazis. All provided straightforward, idealized role models for an anxious populace facing the Depression, Fascism, World War and the Nuclear Age.
But this summer’s profitable crop of big screen superheroes is different. We’ve got Hancock’s title character, a self-loathing homeless alcoholic; Iron Man…’s Tony Stark, a vain, womanizing alcoholic-in-training;

July 29th, 2008
A nun tries to discover what it is about SATC that women find so appealing?

To be honest, I was never a fan of Sex and the City when it was on television so I really had no interest in seeing it when it hit the big screen earlier this summer. I just didn’t think it was my kind of movie as a nun, if you get my drift. But after it had such extraordinary success at the box office—its opening night grossed more than Indiana Jones, establishing SATC… as “by far the best [opening] of all time for a romantic comedy,” according to EW.com—a call from a friend of mine piqued my curiosity. He mentioned during our conversation that he was surprised at the broad range of women he knew who absolutely loved the movie. Whether it was college-age young women, accomplished 20, 30 and 40-something professionals

July 24th, 2008

“Why do you think people are so fixated on celebrities?”…

July 10th, 2008
Thom Yorke and Vincent Van Gogh... undeniably distorted and utterly beautiful

Who knows, were he born a century earlier perhaps Radiohead’s Thom Yorke might have picked up a paintbrush instead of a microphone. Yorke and 19th century Post-Impressionist Vincent Van Gogh (1857-1890) occupy completely different artistic fields from different eras and seemingly different worlds, but with the release of Radiohead’s recent In Rainbows… Yorke proves yet again that—despite the 115 years that separate their births—and he is a spiritual brother of the legendary painter. There is something in each of these men that screams its way into the conscience of the world, something undeniably distorted and utterly beautiful.
Refusing to give in to the burden of past successes Radiohead’s

July 1st, 2008
U2-themed liturgies offer a sacred spin on the music of the world's biggest band

Until recently, I believed the most heavenly experience I would ever have through music happened at a U2 concert in 1997 when I had an OMG moment as Bono blew a kiss my way while he sang “Mysterious Ways.” Fans of the band will recall that same song—from their 1991 album Achtung Baby…—featured a very sensual belly dancer shimmying through the video and live concerts from that period; but the Reverend Paige Blair, rector of St. George’s Episcopal Church in York Harbor, Maine, urges listeners to consider the music from the Dublin quartet in a completely different light.
“The belly dancer is great,” she says. “But listen to the wonderful intertwining of how God

June 30th, 2008
WALL-E's a winner

Even by Hollywood standards the story idea pitched to movie executives for Pixar’s WALL-E… must have sounded hallucinogenic: “So we’ve got this robot, but it’s a really lonely robot, see, because all the humans have left Earth a complete wasteland and this poor little guy has to pick up their trash—forever! Yeah! He’ll be busy picking up their trash for like, 700 years, and he’ll only have one friend…um…a cockroach. And then let’s say he falls in love with another robot and ultimately makes the planet safe for all the humans again! Oh, oh, and people will leave the movie wanting to save the Earth.”
When word first spread about Pixar’s

June 23rd, 2008

Earlier this month, a Catholic watchdog group protested a student art exhibition that displayed certain religious symbols in a sexually explicit manner. Have you ever been offended by a piece of art?…

June 18th, 2008
A renowned New York artist adds a modern twist to ancient Jewish law in creating a painting of Biblical proportions

“Each painting lays out in black, white, purple and magenta just how present G-D is in all aspects of life.”

June 9th, 2008

“Do you think Barack Obama should choose Hillary Clinton to be his running mate?”…

June 6th, 2008
Prince Caspian struggles to recapture the magic of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

It’s not easy being a villain in Narnia. Twice now, in the two movies based on C.S. Lewis’ beloved series, the bad guys begin with the whole world in their hands, only to be thwarted—like some mythic, British take on Scooby Doo—by a band of meddling kids.
Narnia can be a pretty brutal place for filmmakers as well. Lewis’ books have spawned millions of passionate, highly defensive devotees across three generations. Meaning that anybody who dares to put their beloved tales on screen does so at their own peril. They also risks the scorn of movie critics, who are as notoriously finicky as any Narnia fans, and perhaps even less rational.
No surprise, then, that director Andrew Adamson has come out of Prince Caspian…

May 21st, 2008
Expelled manages to lose Ben Stein’s funny

Since his first, monotone date with cinematic history in 1986’s Ferris Bueller, Ben Stein has carved a public career out of slight, but reliably charming variations on a single character: himself. Stein has been a supporting player in TV series and movies, a commercial pitchman (remember those Clear Eyes ads?), the host of the late, great Comedy Central quiz show Win Ben Stein’s Money…, and, more earnestly, a news pundit on CBS. His wardrobe—always a drab-colored suit, always a pair of canvas sneakers laced up with immaculately white shoestrings—seems the perfect extension of his persona. Bookish, phlegmatic and self-deprecatingly funny, he looks at once like the smartest and

May 20th, 2008

“In what way are you affected by the news of natural disasters abroad?”…

May 17th, 2008

Do you have financial debt? How do you feel about debt?…

May 14th, 2008
...or, How in the world did the creator of Roger Rabbit and the Archbishop of Newark end up collaborating on a sci-fi novel together?

The book is called Space Vulture, and it’s a far-out, one-of-a-kind project, even by science fiction standards. The cover features a throwback, Flash-Gordon-style photo of a caped villain with a ray gun. And next to the picture are the names of the two writers: the first is Gary K. Wolf, a sci-fi veteran and the creator of Roger Rabbit; the second—God’s honest truth—is the Most Reverend Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark, New Jersey.
It might sound like an improbable partnership. But the truth is that these lifelong friends have been looking for a way to work together since their boyhood in rural Illinois. The result is Space Vulture…, published this spring (TOR Books, $20.95). In an interview

May 8th, 2008
Iraqi-Americans in the Detroit area struggle with the extinction of their religious roots

I had not seen her in over 20 years but when I came across her sitting at a table in the ballroom I immediately knew it was Mrs. N. The mother of a grade school friend, Mrs. N used to prepare food for us that was simultaneously exotic to my child’s palate, yet also quite comforting. Back then I knew that Pierre, my young friend, and his family were Chaldean; I could say the word but I did not fathom the civilization, history and culture contained therein. The family had come to the U.S. from Iraq in the early seventies and, like many other Arabs of both Muslim and Christian faiths, settled in the vicinity of Detroit, Michigan.
She looked the same, save that her black hair had turned almost completely white. After introducing…

May 6th, 2008

“What was it like to experience the Pope in person?”
(Gathered while broadcasting Sirius’ radio’s BustedHalo Show from the lawn of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.) …

May 1st, 2008
A twenty-six year old reflects on Bruce Springsteen's continued magic

A memory: I am three years old, watching MTV. A man on a stage wearing tight jeans and a white button-down shirt with the sleeves rolled up dances and sings into a microphone with his band in the background. He sways his shoulders and spins as the camera follows him, and toward the end of the song he pulls a young woman onto the stage to dance with him. I remember loving the music, and even the video, in a three-year-old sort of way.
The man is Bruce Springsteen; the song is “Dancing in the Dark.” The year is 1984.
I saw the video again recently for the first time since childhood; it has not aged well. I wonder if, even in the Eighties, it ever really impressed anyone who was old enough to dress himself. Springsteen,…

April 25th, 2008
An up-close and personal experience of Pope Benedict's visit from a Jewish woman's perspective

In the eighteen months since the launch of Sirius Satellite Radio’s Catholic Channel, Robyn Gould has certainly seen the Catholic Church from more angles than most people ever will in their lifetimes. As the producer of “The BustedHalo Show” with Paulist Father Dave Dwyer, Gould is in charge of booking guests and planning a three hour show (7-10PM EST) every Monday to Friday night.
During her tenure, the thirty-something has dealt with guests ranging from Deepak Chopra to Cardinals visiting from the Vatican. In addition to her behind-the-scenes duties, Gould plays a major on-air role as a sidekick to Fr. Dave, bringing her perspective as a Jewish woman to the show’s lively discussion…

powered by the Paulists