Archives For movies

Today we got the first look teaser trailer for the new next Star Wars movie. It isn’t Episode VIII, but it still looks like it’ll be a great new look at the Star Wars universe.


Free Christmas Movie Resource

Chris —  November 16, 2015 — 1 Comment

cine christmas

I love being able to share great resources with fellow youth workers, it’s even better when they are FREE. It’s great of the fine folks over at the Youth Cartel to release a free collection of Christmas Movie lessons written by Joel Mayward. This could make a great short series in December leading up to Christmas.

The movies included are:

  • Elf
  • It’s a Wonderful Life
  • A Christmas Story
  • Joyeux Noël

Go grab the download and check out some of their other great resources.

Take Me to the Download


If the awesome new trailer that came out for Star Wars: The Force Awakens wasn’t long enough for you, someone incredible person edited all the trailers into one masterpiece of viewing pleasure. Enjoy!

Summer Movie Guide 2014

Chris —  June 11, 2014 — 1 Comment

Movie, Theater

I love summer movies, and they can be a great opportunity to hang out with students from your youth ministry. The team over at The Source for Youth Ministry has put together a great summer movie guide.  Some of the have already come out, but there are plenty of blockbusters still to come.  Check it out and know what movies may make great youth group activities.

You might also want to check out their FREE reviews and discussion starters.  They already have a few of the summer movies posted for you to use.

If you are looking for more info about what movies contain and what age groups they would be appropriate for, check out Common Sense Media.  It’s a great resource for reviews movies, tv shows, books, apps, and more.


Image Credit: Halmeoni 

newavengersposterI loved the movie Avengers, I think it might be my favorite super hero movie of all time.  So I was pretty excited to find this great discussion guide over on The Source for Youth Ministry.  The main point of the lesson is about team work to be a force for God’s kingdom.

Here’s the background about the movie and the summary of the clip used to kick off the discussion:

The Movie Clip:  The Avengers, one of 2012’s biggest films, assembles Marvel’s most beloved gang of superheroes against a threat from another world. Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Captain America (Chris Evans), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) must band together in order to protect Earth from Loki, Thor’s adopted brother from Asgard, who has intentions of conquering our planet using the infinite power of the Tesseract. Unless The Avengers can put aside their pride and learn to work together, the mighty Loki will conquer Earth and subject it to his tyrannical rule.

Directed by Joss Whedon, the movie was clean, free of sexual innuendo, imitatible behavior, and gratuitous language. It was rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-if violence and action throughout, and a mild drug reference.

Introducing the Clip:  There were so many great scenes in The Avengers, and some of them, like this one, actually provide us with a powerful lesson about our own lives. In this clip, you’re going to see what happened when all of the Avengers come together for the first time on board the flying boat. They’re discussing the best way to defeat the powerful Loki and prevent him from taking over Earth, but each of them have a different idea about what would work best. Take a look at what happens to the mighty team – and how they treat each other – as the conversation wears on.

Scene Script:


This clip is over 5 minutes long, and there’s a lot of dialogue, so a “script” won’t be provided. Instead, what follows is a synopsis. Also, this clip uses the word “damn” one time.

This scene begins as Nick Fury walks in and asks, “What are you doing Mr. Stark?” A conversation ensues about S.H.I.E.L.D.’s production of weapons. Nobody seems to like that, and trust is clearly broken. But on top of the disagreement, the Avengers begin to insult and accuse one another.

Meanwhile, Loki’s henchmen approach the floating boat on a stolen aircraft. Hawkeye – under the spell of Loki – shoots an explosive arrow at the ship. They are preparing to board the ship, rescue Loki, and re-steal the spectrometer they originally stole from scientists in Germany.

The clip returns to the discussion being had by the Avengers and Nick Fury. They’ve gone from talking about a game plan to purely insulting one another. The dialogue clearly shows that the Avengers are not functioning as a team, and in fact, want to fight each other.

The clip ends as Hawkeye detonates his explosive arrow, throwing the superheroes into action.


Click HERE to read the entire lesson.

Movie clip discussions like this are right for every group, but I’ve had great success using them in my teaching.

If you want an easy was to use this clip, consider downloading the movie on iTunes.

The Avengers

Or pick up the Blu-Ray with the digital copy from Amazon:

Everyone loves fonts, right?  There’s nothing like a new font that can make your next flyer or calendar really feel fresh and fun.  Here are a couple of links of over 80 FREE fonts for you to use.

The first group has a bunch of great looking new fonts that can help direct the look and feel of your piece:

45+ Latest Free Fonts To Enhance Your Designs

And if that wasn’t enough, here are some great movie style fonts for you.  Fonts like Harry Potter, Disney, Lord of the Rings, Twilight and more.  Great for spoofing popular movies with your own version.

35 Movie Fonts That Are Free To Download 

Have you ever hunted for just the perfect movie clip to use as an illustration for your teaching?  There’s brand new iPhone app to help with that: Clips ~ Teach the Bible; Use scenes from movies.  I love that it’s made by a Youth Pastor that’s also a developer, RJ Grunewald.

Description from iTunes:

Have you ever noticed that a scene from a popular movie can often teach better than any great lesson from a pastor or small group leader?  Clips is all about helping people engage with the Bible by using scenes from great films. Pastors, small group leaders, and youth ministers can all benefit with the tools provided. Clips tells you exactly what scenes to use, what topics to teach, the verses you could use, and even some possible discussion questions.  It gives you everything you need to easily find the scene you are teaching from, even linking to it in iTunes.

Open the app and you are free to browse the movie library, look up topics you’d like to teach, or even search for a scene based on a particular verse.  Once you’ve found the movie you want to use, Clips makes it easy for you to have exactly what you need to lead a discussion on that scene.

– Library of 50 movies (and growing…)
– Over 80 topics
– Search by title, topic, or verse
– Share scene details via email
– Save your favorite clips and add used clips to history
– Easily find movies in iTunes through download links

Looks like a great youth ministry resource, go grab it on the app store now!
Clips ~ Teach the Bible; Use scenes from movies - GrunewaldDev

Apple Camp 2011

Chris —  June 9, 2011 — Leave a comment

It’s that time of year to sign-up your 8 – 12 year olds for Apple’s free day camp held in their retail stores.  I’ve sent my kids that last few years and they’ve had a blast.  This summer, like last, focuses on movie making.

Description from their site:

A fun, free workshop where kids become filmmakers.

At Apple Camp, kids aged 8-12 learn how to shoot their own footage, create an original song in GarageBand on an iPad, and put it all together in iMovie on a Mac. This free workshop, held at the Apple Store, spans three days and ends with campers debuting their masterpieces at the Apple Camp Film Festival. Space is limited and workshops fill up quickly so sign up now for a super creative adventure.

Day One (1.5 hours)

  • Introduction to the basics of moviemaking, including creating a storyboard.
  • Create an original soundtrack by making a song in GarageBand on an iPad.
  • Prepare for shooting footage outside the store overnight or inside the store at the end of the workshop.

On day one, Apple Camp also includes an optional, one-hour Parent’s Workshop that focuses on using and setting Parental Controls on the Mac. Registration is not required.

Day Two (1.5 hours)

  • Introduction to iMovie — simple-to-use moviemaking software.
  • Use a Mac to import and edit collected movie footage, incorporating stills and music.
  • Create a film.

With guidance from Apple Camp Counselors, kids will use iMovie — part of the iLife suite of creativity applications built into every Mac — to create, edit, and produce their films.

Then on the Saturday following camp, there’s a film festival where all the kids get to show the movies they’ve made.

Registation opened the morning, and in the past, spots have gone fast.  Not a bad free summer activity.  And if you don’t have kids of your own, it may be a good way to get some of those younger middle schoolers in your ministry excited about movie making and they can help make videos for youth group.

Click here to go to the Registration link, and see if there’s one near you.




New X-men Trailer

Chris —  February 11, 2011 — Leave a comment

OK, i know it’s nerdy, but i just had to share.  I’m excited for this movie.

I confess that I still haven’t seen the movie about facebook written by one of my favorite scriptwriters Aaron Sorkin.  I have read several reviews, and was struck by Lawrence Lessig’s insight into what amounts to a fundamental shift that has been created by the internet.  This shift has a lot to teach us about our students and our ministry.

Lessig explains that the movie missed the whole point and magic of Zuckerberg’s story.  He says, “what’s important here is that Zuckerberg’s genius could be embraced by half-a-billion people within six years of its first being launched, without (and here is the critical bit) asking permission of anyone.”  I agree.  As a person who spent his adolescence in a world where the internet was just beginning to take shape, I am constantly surprised by the total lack of limits (both good and bad) that the internet provides.

I have seen this first hand (tough not nearly as lucratively as Zuckerberg!).  I have a personal blog where I post thoughts on faith, ministry, and the future of the church.  It has regular visitors from 23 countries!   I’m just some punk youth pastor sitting on a chair at home drinking sweet tea!  I love writing it, but never thought I would have that type of audience when I started posting on it years ago.

What this means for our students is that they live in a world where they do not have to get corporate financing, a publishing contract, or a record deal to make a serious attempt at their dreams.

I think that is something that we MUST capitalize on as youth ministers.  I don’t mean having a blog or a Facebook page, but helping set youth free to do something about their faith.  Instead of encouraging them to engage in the 1950s passive learner model of sitting and listening every time we get them together, we need to be giving them the kind of permission with their faith that the internet gives them.  We need to be giving them permission to fulfill Jesus’ dream of “thy kingdom come, thy will be done.”

I think the key to getting those students engaged is to follow the lessons from the internet:

  1. Start small and close to free.  What can you and your friends do in your spare time to make a difference?
  2. Make it social.  A cople of people working together have much more insight and potential than a lone ranger.
  3. Release the beta.  Launch sooner than later.  If it is overwhelming, make it smaller.  If something non-essential is going to delay the launch, do it later.
  4. Remind them that when Jesus gives the Great Commission in Matthew, he is both asking us to go, and giving us authority to go… just like the internet.
  5. Allow comments.  Find ways to get other people to tell you how you are doing, and what you could do better.
  6. Tap into a social network.  Students have a limited network on their own, but when they have adults on the team, they  have access to a much broader network of people and resources than they did on their own.

These are a few.  I know there are more.  Instead of resisting the internet’s no-limit posture, let’s funnel that power into the true hope for the hopeless.