Welcome to Thoughts & Spoilers!
In the words of Obi-Wan Kenobi: Hello there!
I’ve been thinking for some time that I should start a Substack, so here it is. If you’ve followed my blogs or my public Twitter and Facebook accounts, you know pretty much what to expect, although I think it’s fair to say that my interests have shifted somewhat since the lockdowns began two years ago.
For example, I no longer follow box-office data quite as obsessively as I used to. This is partly because Box Office Mojo, one of the main sources for information on that sort of thing, went through a major redesign three years ago that basically killed a lot of its functionality. At first I struggled to make the website work for me, but then the pandemic shut down all theatres just a few months later, and suddenly there wasn’t any box-office data at all. This made letting go of the obsession a little easier.
I also follow regular theatrical releases less closely than I used to. This, too, is partly a consequence of the pandemic: there are fewer wide releases in general, and there is less incentive to make the commute into Vancouver to see the smaller films that don’t make it to my side of the Fraser River. (Moviegoing is always a gamble, and I’m increasingly unwilling to spend time and gas on iffy bets that I’ll be able to watch at home in a few weeks anyway.) These days, my media diet includes a lot of TV shows and a lot of older films, many of them courtesy of The Criterion Channel.
One thing that hasn’t changed is my interest in Bible movies, and I fully expect that the bulk of my writing at Thoughts & Spoilers will focus on that genre.
To that end, I have decided to test the waters here by writing two different series of posts over the summer: one, a detailed episode-by-episode analysis of the second season of The Chosen (similar to the posts I wrote about the first season two years ago); and two, a hopefully breezier look at ‘God’s Stories’, a series of Old Testament movies produced by the same Jerusalem-born, Bulgaria-based filmmaker who made The Savior, an Arabic movie about Jesus that I’ve written about in the past.
But I don’t want to be limited to that genre, so I’ll probably write about other films here too, whenever the mood strikes me. We’ll see how that goes.
I haven’t quite set everything up at this Substack yet—I’m sure there are banners and buttons and formats and About pages that need my attention—but if I keep putting off the posts until all that other stuff is done, I’ll probably never write anything. So I’m going to start writing posts this week, and focus on the other stuff later.
One thing I do plan to do down the road is add a paid-subscription tier. But for the first few weeks, at least, everything will be open to the public.
So, without further ado, on with the show…
— The picture above was taken during a walk I took around the perimeter of the Old City of Jerusalem in November 2018. I believe that’s the Kidron Valley in the distance behind me.
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