Most of my students watch more movies than they read books. Some students choose not to register for Tuesday evening courses because Tuesday is "cheap movie night." Movies have captured the imagination, even if M. Darrol Bryant overstates the matter, suggesting that "the act of going to the movies is a participation in a central ritual of this culture's spiritual life." (106) Movies sometimes seem even to do our imagining for us, either fueling or disabling our vigorously imaginative, critical and constructive engagement with religious and theological issues.

In my course, "Religion, Film and Popular Culture", I try to offer a context in which students can think critically about the familiar, can learn to see in fresh and challenging ways, and can begin to explore religious concerns through the lens of their movie-going experiences.