Co-curricular Events

Philosophy Movie Night

Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology (DSPT) students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the local community gather several times each semester to discuss philosophical themes in great movies. There will be a ten-minute talk before each movie and a related philosophical topic is discussed after the showing. The public, philosophers and scholars are invited to attend.

Philosophy Movie Night is sponsored by DSPT Alumni. All movies are shown in Classroom 1, our state of the art classroom with movie theater style seats, a surround sound system, and large screen. Admission is free, though donations are always welcome. Light refreshments will be served.

For more information about Philosophy Movie Night, please click here for a list of all the movies that have been previously screened and consequently dissected by our student's sharp, philosophical acumen.

Fall 2013 Schedule

My Fair Lady  - DSPT Student Caleb Brown will be presenting on My Fair Lady and discussing the relationship between linguistics and the soul.- November 7, 2013
The Departed  - DSPT Student Caleb Brown - October 9, 2013

Spring 2013 Schedule

Superman Returns  - DSPT Student Christopher Ragusa - April 2, 2013
Humanity and Divinity: an Examination of Christological Imagery in Superman Returns
DSPT Philosophy Movie Night - Christological Images in Superman Returns
Please join us as DSPT Concurrent MA student Christopher Ragusa leads us in an in depth discussion over the movie Superman Returns . He will discuss it as an example of the modern vision of Christ and humanity, and its implications of salvation, sin, and human nature.
DSPT Philosophy Movie Night - Not Just Girls Night - Mean Girls and Girard's Scapegoat Paradigm Mean Girls - DSPT Student Caleb Brown - March 15, 2013

(Not Just for) Girls Night! We watched Mean Girls (2004)--widely acclaimed as the most accurate and honest portrayal of female-social dynamics captured in movie-form. We mined the film for its self-conscious anthropological insights, making special use of Rene Girard's scapegoating paradigm. Come laugh at the human condition!

Fall 2012 Schedule

DSPT Philosophy Movie Night - Pixar's Wall-EWALL•E XtrnlLink - DSPT Student Caleb Brown - November 6, 2012

You won't want to miss this unique opportunity to train your eye in the finer points of visual storytelling. Reproducing a class he taught at Warner Brothers, Caleb Brown will perform an in-depth analysis of Pixar's WALL•E. in order to demonstrate how filmmakers manage our attention and subtly communicate big ideas.

The GodfatherDecoding The Godfather XtrnlLink - DSPT Student, Caleb Brown - September 28, 2012

Caleb Brown reverse-engineers Francis Ford Coppola's directing decisions in a live, interactive scene-by-scene commentary. It will take 5 HOURS, but you will never watch movies the same way again. One screenwriting teacher charges $1000 for an evening like this, but you'll get the class for free. By the time the clock strikes midnight on Sept. 29th, we'll all know a great deal more about how movies make meaning, about human nature and about America in the early 1970s.

Spring 2012 Schedule

DarjeelingThe Darjeeling Limited XtrnlLink- DSPT Student Benjamin Griffin - April 24, 2012

In order to provide a sort of conclusion to the previous two films shown for Philosophy Movie Night, The Darjeeling Limited will be presented with it's theme of cultural appropriation in mind. Unable to cope with their ever present pasts, let alone their ever passing present, three brothers embark on a misguided attempt at a spiritual pilgrimage in India, "one of the most spiritual places in the world." Shot vibrantly by twee autuer Wes Anderson, The Darjeeling Limited serves as a remarkably wry reminder of how easily we deny ourselves the beauty in this world in our stead-fast determination to claim where it might be found.

NamesakeThe Namesake XLink- DSPT Student Tom Sundaram - February 14, 2012.

A shallow glance at Mira Nair's The Namesake yields that it is a story of a young man torn between his Indian heritage and his Western society. Yet to watch this movie is not to watch a biopic about India or the West. This movie is a radiantly beautiful presentation of what it is to be human: to be torn between expectations and liberty, culture and autonomy, happiness and contentment, love and lesser things. Nair presents us with a story not just of one world with glimpses of another, as she did in Monsoon Wedding, but with the complete and entire collision of two worldviews. Her usual emphasis on cultural globalization is here amplified into an all-encompassing symphony of human life, and no movement of that symphony is without any aspect of that life. The movie displays happiness and despair in equal measure; but at its very core it has a message of hope about how the “seamless see-saw” of the two worlds may be set in an equal balance which is essential to human fulfillment.

Fall 2011 Schedule

Monsoon Wedding - Mira NairMonsoon Wedding xlink - DSPT Student, Tom Sundaram - November 8, 2011.

Once in a blue moon, one finds a movie which is both pleasantly and immediately endearing, as well as tremendously deep and significant to the understanding of what it is to be human. Mira Nair's Monsoon Wedding is one of those movies. Without wishing to “explain India”, Mira Nair attempts to paint a picture of a modern Indian family seeking to bring forth a wedding in the middle of the Monsoon, and in the process, she wondrously illustrates the clash and the embrace between globalization and national identity, the role of the family in culture, and the importance of the family in the life of every human being, including the socially disenfranchised and those who suffer. At the heart of this colorful, picturesque movie is a fiery joy, and many will find themselves wishing to watch it again and again.

Al-Ghazali: Alchemist of HappinessAl-Ghazali: Alchemist of Happiness xlink - Sister Marianne Farina, CSC - October 11, 2011.

Exploring the life and impact of the greatest spiritual and legal philosopher in Islamic history, this film examines Ghazali's existential crisis of faith that arose from his rejection of religious dogmatism, and reveals profound parallels with our own times. Ghazali became known as the Proof of Islam and his path of love and spiritual excellence overcame the pitfalls of the organised religion of his day. His path was largely abandoned by early 20th century Muslim reformers for the more strident and less tolerant school of Ibn Taymiyya. Combining drama with documentary, this film argues that Ghazali's Islam is the antidote for today's terror.

Spring 2011 Schedule

ContactContact xlink - Father Chris Renz, OP - March 31, 2011.

Dr. Ellie Arroway (Jodie Foster), a promising SETI astrophysicist, has placed all her hopes in the verifiable world of reason and discourse. When she is challenged to enter into the world of creative intuition (what Aquinas called connatural knowledge) she refuses to go. Finding herself on a collision course, Ellie must decide whether or not to make contact with that alien world - where what is known to be true is “beyond proof.” Oh, if only she had read Creative Intuition in Art and Poetry by Jacques Maritain. Come and see how Ellie responds to the invitation, “Wanna take a ride!”

Barton Fink - 1991Barton Fink xlink - Father Albert Paretsky, OP - March 3, 2011

An aspiring writer for Hollywood in the early 1940's finds himself increasingly unable to distinguish between reality and the representation of reality, leading to a showdown with the devil in a sort of hell, which may or not be of his own imagination. A fascinating study of the disintegration of a personality unable to cope with a world that cares neither for art nor the artist.