Gareth Higgins (garethhiggins.net) is a writer and broadcaster from Belfast, Northern Ireland, who has worked as an academic and activist. He is the author of Cinematic States: America in 50 Movies and How Movies Helped Save My Soul: Finding Spiritual Fingerprints in Culturally Significant Films. He blogs at www.godisnotelsewhere.wordpress.com and co-presents “The Film Talk” podcast with Jett Loe at www.thefilmtalk.com. He is also a Sojourners contributing editor. Originally from Northern Ireland, he lives in Asheville, North Carolina.
Posts By This Author
Dueling Visions of Human Life
THE UNITED STATES as envisaged in cinema is often a fight club, a place where there are three kinds of people—the thieves who milk the system, the cops who try to catch them, and the rest of
Health Care in the UK: An Astonishing Example of Communitarian Justice
Real Life at the Movies
Now that most filmed records of human life are made by amateurs—the growth of YouTube and other forms of uploading moving images is the most influential recent development in cinema—we
Abortion: Conversations, Not Killings
Eschatology or Bigotry?
Fox 'News' on 'Obama's Apology Tour'
The Columbine Killings and the Convenience of Dehumanization
Watchmen: A Clone without a Soul
Imagine a world in which a human being developed godlike powers and put them to military use. War might soon be a thing of the past. Imagine this world also tolerating people who dress up in costumes to avenge crime before -- as worlds often do -- turning its back on these vigilantes in search of another scapegoat on whom to project its hunger for violence.
New Violence Takes Aim at Northern Ireland's Hard-Won Peace
Audio: Gearing up for the Oscars with Great Films from 2008
A Controversial Approach to Healing Northern Ireland's Violent Past
The Futility of Violence: Eastwood's Gran Torino
The other day I heard a 78-year-old man sing, through a cracked voice, one of the most moving and gentle jazz melodies, as the iconic image of a fetishized sports car being driven into the sunset was projected. And, not for the first time in recent years, I was crying at the end of a Clint Eastwood film.
Cinema Review 2008: The Top Ten
2008: Cinema in Review
Bill Maher's Religulous: Polemic Based on Cynical Preconceptions
A 'Call and Response' to End Modern Slavery
Lakeview Terrace: Somewhat Thoughtful Thriller
The number one film at the U.S. box office this past weekend was Lakeview Terrace, Neil La Bute's somewhat thoughtful thriller in which an LAPD officer harasses his new neighbors; the cop is black, the neighbors are an inter-racial couple. If the ethnic identities were switched, the film might never have been made; and if it had, it would have been a far less interesting film -
Randy Newman's Harps and Angels and the Fall of the American Empire
Randy Newman might be surprised to see himself mentioned on a progressive spirituality blog. In his five decades of making music that is alternately brilliantly satirical and elegant (and sometimes both), he hasn't often smiled on religion or religious people. In spite of his skepticism about spirituality, he also has written some of the most beautiful love songs I've ever [...]
Two Questions of a Soon-to-be Immigrant
In a few weeks, I will make a life-changing journey. After 33 years of living in Northern Ireland, and for very good reasons, I am about to become an immigrant. I'm excited about this move, not least because I believe that doing something new is one of the best ways to grow as a human being.
But two questions come to mind as I prepare myself for leaving home.
The first is, "What will it feel like to be an immigrant?" Will I be welcomed by the people in my adopted [...]
The Dark Knight: A Tribute to George W. Bush?
The Dark Knight, unlike many summer blockbusters, is actually an astonishing movie -- a stunning fusion of craft and entertainment, which manages to be both gripping in an edge-of-your seat fashion, and philosophically interesting. It's a violent film in which none of the brutality is played for the audience's pleasure, and although it's a comic book story, it takes place in a [...]