All four now available here and from linked retailers below! Feel free to contact me if you want more info!
Best Movies You Never Saw: 300 Under-the-Radar Films That Were Overlooked, Unjustly Trashed--or Just Plain Terrific
NOW AVAILABLE AT AMAZON and through this site!
Ever feel overwhelmed by the many movie choices you can make on a given evening? Ever get tired of seeing the same old titles over and over again on your queue or list? Or have you ever been lucky enough to suddenly find some undiscovered cinematic treasure that most folks never heard of?
The Best Movies You Never Saw is designed to help movie-lovers broaden their filmgoing horizons—with cult films, recent indies, under-the-radar picks and quite a few older gems that have somehow fallen out of the limelight. Subtitled 300 Under-the-Radar Movies That Were Overlooked, Unjustly Trashed or Just Plain Terrific, the book includes family films, true stories, silents, action, comedy, sci-fi, rom-coms, mysteries ... and a few that are downright unclassifiable. It also provides a genre index, along with an appendix of actors and directors, plus a list of must-see classics to complete your filmgoing experience. Each entry is carefully described with cast, plot and various trivia, along with occasional background on film history or cinematic techniques.
The Best Movies You Never Saw is the perfect book for die-hard film fans—or casual viewers who just want something different on a Saturday night.
“The primary role of a film critic and historian should be to encourage readers to see movies, and the author does just that. A treasure trove of discoveries. I thought I saw more films than anybody but I never even heard of some of these titles!”—Danny Peary, Cult Movies
“Smith is one of only a handful of film critics whose movie recommendations automatically make me sit up and take notice. A welcome resource that I will be referring to for years to come.”—Cap Stewart, Personal Purity Isn’t Enough
“A great movie guide for those who want some help discovering hidden gems of movies you missed or didn’t know about. Smith helps you avoid wading through the hours of garbage it takes to find those good ones. It’s clear that Smith loves movies, has a wide interest in many genres, and applies his Christian worldview toward stories with maturity and wisdom. You’ll be glad you trusted him as your tour director.”
—Brian Godawa, Hollywood Worldviews
“A veritable A-Z history of film, as well as an introduction to film aesthetics. Smith writes in a style that is easily accessible, yet also learned and scholarly. Get this book and keep it next to your entertainment center.”—Philip J. Skerry, Emeritus Professor of English and Film and author of five books, including Psycho in the Shower and Defining America
Transparency: A Cure for Hypocrisy in the Modern Church
NOW AVAILABLE AT AMAZON and through this site!
Have you ever arrived at church feeling so stressed out, so off the rails, such an absolute train wreck, that you thought to yourself, “I can’t face these people” -- and your strongest wish was to rush back home and dive into bed?
What on earth is happening here? How has church become a place where we must leave our “real selves” at the door -- and pick them up later when we leave, more burdened than ever with loneliness, exhaustion, and hypocrisy?
Transparency offers one remedy to this lamentable situation.
Subtitled A Cure for Hypocrisy in the Modern Church, the book challenges readers to consider why we aren’t transparent -- including such issues as perfectionism, blame-shifting, fear of man, and of course, pride and self-preservation. Likewise, the text shows how transparency works to unify the body and crucify sin, while also relieving the stress of pretending to be someone you’re not.
More important, Open Hearts points to transparency in Scripture -- in the lives of Job, Moses, David, Paul, and Jesus, among others; and it offers a practical framework for making openness work in the local church.
Imagine a life without the pretense and artificiality that cripples our fellowship -- a life where church members are free to admit their sins and struggles, sharing their deepest needs, worries, and joys in an atmosphere of openness and authenticity. That’s the kind of life you will find in this book.
"Handles the topic with remarkable thoroughness, piercing insight, sage counsel, and, especially, appropriate transparency. If your heart aches for a renewed Christian community of one heart and soul, holding all things in common, this book will equip you, from the Scripture, to make your dream a reality." -- Peter Krol, President of DiscipleMakers campus ministry
"Explains the powerful reasons why we should not be afraid to be open about our flaws, and sins with one another. And most importantly, provides practical help on how to foster a spirit of loving acceptance within the Christian community. This is how to apply Gospel grace through humility. -- Brian Godawa, author and screenwriter
Sex & Violence in the Bible: A Survey of Explicit Content in the Holy Book
If the Bible were rated like modern-day movies, what would it receive? PG? PG-13, maybe even R? Based on some of the stuff in Genesis, Ezekiel and Song of Solomon, it sure wouldn’t get a G like so many of today’s sermons!
Sex & Violence in the Bible demonstrates that Christians needn’t be terribly squeamish about unsavory material; rather, we must take a truly biblical approach: frank and forthright, yet tasteful and discreet -- rarely detailed or excessive.
The text is a carefully organized, elegantly written catalog of pertinent passages, bringing out the original meaning, which has often been obscured by time or translation; it includes detailed study of language and literary devices, together with explanations of ancient customs such as stoning, crucifixion and “hanging” (actually impalement). Its principal aim is to clarify what is actually happening in each passage, and exactly how the writers chose to depict it. Using this material, readers can begin to develop a “Christian aesthetic” of sex and violence, helping them to process our culture’s daily onslaught of explicit material.
"A work of painstaking research and scholarship." -- Leland Ryken, Wheaton College
"Brutally blunt, delicately discreet, strongly scriptural. An excellent resource for the Christian who wants to understand the Bible's revelation of the baser aspects of human nature and sinful reality." -- Brian Godawa, author and screenwriter
"Honors not just the Bible's content but also the Bible's intentional modes of expresssion." -- Carl Trueman, Westminster Theological Seminary
The Psycho File: A Comprehensive Guide to Hitchcock's Classic Shocker
Alfred Hitchcock's seminal 1960 thriller continues to exert its cinematic spell nearly 60 years after it burst onto American movie screens.
The Psycho File has a little of everything: background on how Hitchcock chose the property -- along with 1950s serial killer Ed Gein, basis for Robert Bloch's original novel, and for characters in Texas Chainsaw Massacre as well as Silence of the Lambs; details on how the film was made, including the tremendously complicated shower scene, whose mere 60 seconds of screen time required almost a week of actual filming; audience reaction to the film, along with its legacy of sequels and reboots; and extensive literary analysis discussing Hitch's use of symbolism, irony and motif, among many other intriguing issues and details.
"This is the book to have if you want to understand Psycho's standing in popular culture and film history." -- Philip J. Skerry, author of Psycho in the Shower
To Read a Mockingbird: A Quick & Easy Guide to America's Favorite Novel
Brief and highly accessible intro to Harper Lee's classic 1960 novel To Kill a Mockingbird.
Designed for students and relucant readers, To Read a Mockingbird is a breezy little volume that covers the setting, the characters, the humor & writing style, the themes and the oft-misunderstood conclusion.