Friday Film Forum

Discussion of “Under the Gun” film.


The Third Friday Film Forum is a faith development opportunity that is both social and spiritual.  Everyone is welcome, including young adults, but parental discretion is advised.  Movie ratings will be provided for films that have been rated.

Columbine will continue its Film & Discussion with eleven movies, shown on the 3rd Friday of each month except December.  Anyone can facilitate, but please contact the series coordinator, Darrell Dodge, for information about opportunities and scheduling.  The facilitator selects the movie and leads the discussion. Optionally, a brief summary of the discussion can be submitted by the facilitator for publication on this page.

Films will usually start at 6 pm and discussion will begin afterwards, following a short break.  We will try to end about 9 pm.  If it is an exceptionally long film, the start time may be adjusted.  Please check the Columbine UU Calendar for specific monthly film information and start times They will be posted several weeks ahead of time.

Facilitators: Send movie information and your planned start time to [email protected] to be published on the Columbine Calendar.

It is super FUN to watch the films together as a group at Columbine.  However if you cannot make the showing, the movie can be rented and viewed in your own home.  Then come for the discussion.

Dinner is not provided, but you are certainly welcome to bring your own.  For the discussion bring your own drinks and an optional snack to share.

Anyone needing child care please contact the facilitator one week or more before the event.

2018 Schedule


February 16th – In and Out (1997)
January 19th – The Motorcycle Diaries (2004)
December (no film)

November 17th – Melancholia (2012)
July 21st – He Named Me Malala (2015)

June 16th – Denial (2016)
May 19th – Thank You For Smoking (2006)
April 21st – Citizen Kane (1941)
March 17 – The Imitation Game (2014)
February 17 – The Old Man and the Sea (1958)
January 20 – Under the Gun (2016)





February 16th, 2018 – In and Out

Upon winning an Academy Award, actor Cameron Drake (Matt Dillon) honors his high school teacher, Howard Brackett (Kevin Kline), who he announces, before millions of viewers, is gay. This comes as news to Brackett’s parents (Wilford Brimley, Debbie Reynolds), his principal (Bob Newhart) and especially his fiancée (Joan Cusack). As a media blitz descends upon on his small Indiana town, Brackett attempts to convince everyone that he’s your average straight American male.







January 19th, 2018 – The Motorcycle Diaries

This leisurely drama follows a real-life 1952 road trip by two young men across South America. One of them, Ernesto Guevara de la Serna, will later become a Communist revolutionary and Fidel Castro cohort nicknamed “Che.” Ernesto (Gael Garcia Bernal) is a 23-year-old medical student from a privileged Buenos Aries background who joins pal Alberto (Rodrigo de la Serna) for a four-month tour of South America to celebrate Alberto’s 30th birthday and give Ernesto some time with his girlfriend. They ride on Alberto’s 1939 motorbike. In Chile the vehicle conks out for good, and Ernesto’s girlfriend breaks up with him via letter. The pair now hike overland, finding shelter and trying to keep to their itinerary, which ends with a humanitarian visit to a leprosy clinic. There’s no hokey stroke-of-lightning moment when Ernesto realizes his destiny, just little incidents in which the pair witness injustice, usually against the native Indians, the poor, or anyone opposing corporations or landowners. Alberto is mostly into scamming and chasing girls, but an epilogue explains that his trip with the future Che changed Alberto’s life forever.




November 17th 2017- Melancholia

Melancholia is a 2011 science-fiction drama-psychological thriller film written and directed by Lars von Trier and starring Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Alexander Skarsgård, Cameron Spurr, and Kiefer Sutherland. The film’s story revolves around two sisters, one of whom is preparing to marry, as a rogue planet appears about to collide with Earth.  The film premiered in May 2011 at the 64th Cannes Film Festival, where it was critically lauded. Kirsten Dunst received the festival’s Best Actress Award for her performance. Many critics and film scholars have considered the film to be a masterpiece.

Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald:

Melancholia opens with some staggeringly beautiful images, set to Wagner’s Tristan and Isolde, that won’t make sense on first viewing (a horse collapsing to the ground, Justine emanating small lightning bolts from her fingertips) but end up being a preview to the craziness ahead: They’re postcards from the apocalypse. Von Trier also shows you the end of the world in that opening prologue, letting you know he’s not kidding around and that the movie is not going to wuss out. As Melancholia nears its climax, you share the panic and fear the characters are experiencing: This Armageddon feels real, and the decisions the characters have to make are heartbreaking … This is a tremendous, daring movie.

Running Time: 2 hr 25 min

Rating: R  (nudity, profanity)

Facilitator: Darrell Dodge




July 21st – He Named Me Malala

He Named Me Malala is a 2015 American documentary film directed by Davis Guggenheim. The film presents the young Pakistani female activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai, who has spoken out for the rights of girls, especially the right to education, since she was very young. The film dramatizes how she miraculously survived and has become even more eloquent in her quest after being hunted down and shot by a Taliban gunman as part of the organization’s violent opposition to girls’ education in the Swat Valley in Pakistan. The title refers to the Afghani folk hero Malalai of Maiwand, after whom her father named her. The film stars Malala herself and members of her family. Cameo appearances by Bono and Jon Stewart.

From a  review by Lloyd Bayer on IMDb

“The film begins in Birmingham, United Kingdom, in 2013, where the Yousafzai family is based post recovery period. Although you don’t see a scar, Malala bears a lopsided smile whenever she is asked a question. There is sadness in her eyes along with bashful insecurity but also wisdom and an inner strength much beyond her age. ‘Three years have passed’, she recalls, not of the attempt on her life, but having left her beautiful home in the Swat Valley province of Pakistan. Surrounded by Afghani Mountains, we are shown images of this scenic region (which is always presented as a place of bloodshed and massacre by the media) before Malala begins her story. This is also where the narrative shifts from Malala to her father, beginning with his version of a ‘love marriage’ to Malala’s mother. As a self-taught public speaker, Ziauddin’s story is as incredible as his daughter Malala’s. While it’s clear where the latter gets her courage and insight from, it’s the development of a symbiotic father-daughter relationship that makes this a documentary that must be seen. Riveting, and at times overwhelming, He Named Me Malala is a delight to watch, and so is Malala Yousafzai.”

Time:  The film will start at 6:00 pm. Please arrive at 5:45; bring a light dinner if you wish. (Running time: 1 hr 28 min) Rating: PG13

Facilitator: Lisa Dudek




June 16th – Denial

Based on the acclaimed book “History on Trial: My Day in Court with a Holocaust Denier,” Denial recounts Deborah E. Lipstadt’s (Academy Award winner Rachel Weisz) legal battle for historical truth against David Irving (Cannes Award winner Timothy Spall), who accused her of libel when she declared him a Holocaust denier. In the English legal system in Defamation, the burden of proof is on the accused, therefore it was up to Lipstadt and her legal team to prove the essential truth that the Holocaust occurred. Also starring two-time Academy Award nominee Tom Wilkinson, the film is directed by Emmy Award winner Mick Jackson (“Temple Grandin”) and adapted for the screen by BAFTA and Academy Award nominated writer David Hare (The Reader). Producers are Gary Foster and Russ Krasnoff. Written by Bleecker Street

Time: The film will start at 6:00 pm. Arrive at 5:45 (Running time: 1 hr 48 min)

Facilitator: Melanie Eulberg



May 19th –  Thank You for Smoking 

This 2006 comedy/satire, directed by Jason Reitman, is about Big Tobacco lobbyist Nick Naylor (played by Aaron Eckhart). Naylor makes his living defending the rights of smokers and cigarette makers in our modern neo-puritanical culture. Confronted by health zealots out to ban tobacco and an opportunistic senator who wants to put poison labels on cigarette packs, Nick goes on a PR offensive, spinning away the dangers of cigarettes on TV talk shows and enlisting a Hollywood super-agent to promote smoking in movies. Nick’s newfound notoriety attracts the attention of both tobacco’s head honcho and an investigative reporter for an influential Washington daily. Nick says he is just doing what it takes to pay the mortgage, but the increased scrutiny of his son and a very real death threat may force him to think differently. Cast includes Sam Elliott, Katie Holmes, David Koechner, Rob Lowe, William H. Macy, J. K. Simmons and Robert Duvall.

“The film forces us to focus on the nature of message ‘spinning,’ word twisting, and other communication and negotiation strategies used as much to confuse as to clarify. This is the stuff of advocating, selling, and persuading with which we are bombarded daily in our ‘infomercial’ society. In watching the movie, the viewer is obligated to separate the strategies and techniques of influencing from the purposes and ends to which they are placed in service. The fact that manipulative and deceptive strategies are used is less troubling than whether it is being done for good or ill.” – Robert Benjamin,

Time: The film will start at 6:00 pm. Arrive at 5:45 pm to get settled in (Running time: 1 hr 31 min)  Rating: R

Facilitator: Carol Carpenter



April 21st – Citizen Kane (NR)

Synopsis: The quasi-biographical film examines the life and legacy of Charles Foster Kane, (played by the film’s director, Orson Welles), a character based in part upon the American newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, Chicago tycoons Samuel Insull and Harold McCormick, and aspects of Welles’s own life. Upon its release, Hearst prohibited mention of the film in any of his newspapers. Kane’s career in the publishing world is born of idealistic social service, but gradually evolves into a ruthless pursuit of power. Narrated principally through flashbacks, the story is told through the research of a newsreel reporter seeking to solve the mystery of the newspaper magnate’s dying word: “Rosebud.” Considered by many critics, filmmakers, and fans to be the greatest film of all time, Citizen Kane was voted as such in five consecutive Sight & Sound polls of critics, until it was displaced by Vertigo in the 2012 poll. It topped the American Film Institute’s 100 Years … 100 Movies list in 1998, as well as its 2007 update. Citizen Kane is particularly praised for its cinematography, music, and narrative structure, which have been considered innovative and precedent-setting. (From Wikipedia)

Time: Film will start at 6:00 pm. Arrive at 5:45 to settle in. (Running Time: 1 hr 59 min)

Facilitator: Darrell Dodge




March 17th – The Imitation Game (PG-13)

Synopsis: Based on the real life story of legendary cryptanalyst Alan Turing, the film portrays three periods of his life. The first is the nail-biting race against time by Turing and his brilliant team of code-breakers at Britain’s top-secret Government Code and Cypher School at Bletchley Park, during the darkest days of World War II. The second is 1928, when Alan is a youth attending boarding school. Even then, he is seen as being different and is bullied because of it. His only real friend at the school is Christopher Morcom, “Christopher” which is what he would end up naming his machine, more than just because Christopher Morcom was his friend. The third is 1951, after Alan’s Manchester home is reported broken into by his neighbor. Because nothing was stolen, Alan is quick to dismiss the police. But lead investigator, Detective Robert Nock, believes Alan is hiding something in dismissing them so quickly. What the police discover has far reaching consequences for Alan’s life, but not without Nock wanting first to know what is hidden beneath the information on the surface. (From IMDb)

(Running time: 1 hr 54 min)

Facilitator: Kathy Derrick




February 17 – The Old Man and the Sea

Synopsis:  The Old Man in the film is a Cuban fisherman who has gone 84 days without a catch. His only friend is a young boy who has been barred by his father from accompanying the Old Man out to sea. On the Old Man’s 85th day out, he finally hooks a huge marlin, which he then tries to bring in and haul in from far out from shore. For three days and nights he battles the fish, which is portrayed in the film (as it had been in Hemingway’s novella) as a trial of mental and physical courage that becomes the ultimate test for him of his worth as a man.

Facilitators:  Susan Stein and Brian Pendleton


January 20 – Under The Gun

Synopsis: A look at the aftermath of the Sandy Hook massacre where 20 children were murdered at their school by a resentful, gun-obsessed shooter, but led to no changes in American federal gun laws.

Rating – R.  Run Time:  1 hr 50 min

Facilitator: Bob Pinkham