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WATCH LIST: December 2016

By Observer Staff



Fences
DIRECTED BY DENZEL WASHINGTON, STARRING DENZEL WASHINGTON AND VIOLA DAVIS
(Paramount Pictures)


Troy Maxson (Denzel Washington) came close to making a career in professional baseball, but racial discrimination kept him out of the major leagues. Now, it’s the 1950s, and he’s a 53-year-old sanitation employee instead. Based on a play by August Wilson, Fences is a story of familial duty and the bitterness of failed dreams. Dec. 16

La La Land
DIRECTED BY DAMIEN CHAZELLE, STARRING RYAN GOSLING AND EMMA STONE
(Summit Entertainment)


Lovers Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone) both dream of success — him as a jazz pianist and her as an actress — and it’s these aspirations that could tear them apart. This modern-day musical, which earned the people’s choice award at the Toronto International Film Festival, is a colourful and earnest look at starry-eyed ambition. Dec. 9

What Falls from the Sky: How I Disconnected from the Internet and Reconnected with the God Who Made the Clouds
BY ESTHER EMERY
(Zondervan)


When a personal crisis left Esther Emery feeling burnt out as a playwright and theatre director, she tried something drastic: disconnecting from the Internet for an entire year. She found unexpected peace in her new analog silence. In this memoir, she tells the story of how she rediscovered God and the simple pleasures of the world around her. Dec. 13

Piano Tide
BY KATHLEEN DEAN MOORE
(Counterpoint)

Axel Hagerman uses the riches of his Alaskan harbour home to make a living, selling wood, fish and fresh water. Nora Montgomery, a recent arrival in the area, moves in with a piano and strong environmental convictions. When Axel tries to start a new way to make money, a bear pit, the pair clash in award-winning essayist Kathleen Dean Moore’s debut novel about our delicate, important relationship with nature. Dec. 23




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Faith

The author is baptized at Central United in Calgary. (Photo courtesy of Al Coe)

Why I got baptized in a United Church at the age of 42

by Jacqueline Mercer-Livesey

"I told myself that I didn’t need to go to church to believe in God. I found peace and the Holy Spirit in the things that surrounded me. But still, there was a nagging sense of something missing."

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Observations

Editor/Publisher of The Observer, Jocelyn Bell.

Observations: The rewards of letting go

by Jocelyn Bell

Editor Jocelyn Bell reflects on the upcoming changes for The United Church of Canada, the magazine and in her own life.

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Video

ObserverDocs: Two nurses tackle Vancouver's opioid crisis

Richard Moore is a resident of Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. In this poignant interview, he explains the important work of nurses Evanna Brennan and Susan Giles.

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Faith

July 2018

250 United Church leaders have a message for Doug Ford

by Emma Prestwich

They're urging the new Ontario premier to remember those in need as he carries out promised economic reform.

Culture

July 2018

Tracing Nelson Mandela’s path a century after his birth

by Tim Johnson

A travel writer visits some of the places that shaped the anti-apartheid icon’s life.

Interviews

July 2018

Jamil Jivani sheds light on why young men radicalize

by Suzanne Bowness

In his book 'Why Young Men,' Jamil Jivani talks about his own experience as a troubled youth.

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