Review of “Spotlight”

This Wednesday on the new episode of The Non-Prophets, Jeff and Denis reviewed the movie Spotlight while I had to leave the room to avoid spoilers. Lynnea and I finally had a chance to go see it last night. Jeff and Denis said it was great, and the reviews were all very positive, but we didn’t expect it to be as excellent a movie as it was. You should listen to their discussion of the movie on Wednesday’s episode, since their coverage is also excellent, beginning a little past the eight minute mark. But I didn’t get to put in my two cents, so here’s what I thought.

The subject of child abuse by priests isn’t easy or pleasant to confront, and it’s hard to predict that the movie could be as emotionally gripping and, in the end, satisfying as they actually made it. But the focus of the story is on struggling journalists who are investigating a mystery, and that topic has a special place in my heart.

(Review continues after the break)
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Open thread: Talking to religious family over Thanksgiving

It’s a big cliche at this time of year that people get together with lots of family members who have very different opinions, and they get in terrible arguments around the dinner table. I wanted to write a blog post about coping with this situation, but since my family isn’t religious, I have limited personal experience with this (mainly with some in-laws, but not for several years). One friend with a fundamentalist family (she may identify herself if she chooses) told me that you should never engage with your religious family about your atheism on Thanksgiving. And if they insist on talking about religion or politics, leave the room.

So instead of writing a real post about my opinions, I thought I’d just sit back and listen. For people with religious families of any kind, whether fundamentalist or liberal: In your personal experience, has it ever been productive to let yourself be drawn into a religious discussion with your family, particularly on Thanksgiving? I’d love to hear your anecdotes about this, whether it is about moderate success or comically catastrophic failure. Any strategies for shutting down discussions that aren’t welcome?