Archive for July 25, 2022

By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT – August is upon us and for those in south Louisiana, specifically in Cajun country, that means it is time for the Fête-Dieu du Teche which celebrates the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and also commemorates the arrival of the Acadians in south Louisiana.

On August 15, for the past eight years, Catholics have gathered along Bayou Teche from Leonville (Pop. 2,127) to St. Martiville (Pop. 5,844) to participate in the 38-mile journey down the bayou in a Eucharist procession by boat. The day begins in Leonville with Mass celebrated in French at St. Leo the Great Catholic Church.

Then everyone loads into their boats; the Eucharist is fixed on a altar in the lead boat, under a canopy. Everyone follows by boat down the bayou to Arnaudville (Pop. 1,614) where everyone disembarks. First communicants dressed in white scatter rose petals from baskets and the Eucharist follows, to an altar on the bank at St. Francis Regis Catholic Church. Participants kneel, pray the Rosary and Benediction, and then are back on the boats to the next stop.

By the end of the day, they reach St. Martinville where they process through town to the church, St. Martin de Tours for benediction. Confession is available at each stop.

It is a sight to behold. I’m not Catholic; we are Episcopalians, and my husband likes to say we are “Catholic-lite.” But, we love attending the Fête-Dieu du Teche because face it, what’s not to love about entire communities engaged in prayer?

Last year, as everyone was getting back into their boats at Arnaudville, Steve and I walked over to the bridge so we could see the procession as they passed under us on the way to the next town. Smiling nuns with habits flying behind them waved up at us; the incense perfumed the air and then behind the laity came the families who followed along. All in all it is easy over a hundred boats.

As more people around the world learn about this event, it grows each year. This will be year eight. We already have our lodging reserved and will be there once again to witness the event. I love how this event brings families and communities together; I love how tied to their very Cajun culture this is, too. The journey to St. Martinville commemorates the journey their Acadian ancestors made in fleeing religious persecution all those years ago.

It is a glorious thing to see and I’d encourage anyone to see it if you have the chance. Joseph Pronechen wrote in some detail about the event here and the Facebook page is here. And there is a cool video here. I wrote about it last year on this blog which you can see here.

Question: What is the difference between a woke movie for kids and a non-woke movie for kids:

That is the difference between the take of the Movie Lightyear and the take of Minons the Rise of Gru

Let me point out that when Lightyear started slow excuses were made about the timing and of COVID etc etc etc, but Minions was released just two weeks later and has managed to out preform lightyear by hundreds of millions with two less weeks to do so.

A more significant fact is this one:

The general rule of thumb is a movie has to earn double its production budget in order to break even. By that metric, Lightyear needs $400 million globally to recoup its costs. Going by Pixar’s history, it should be able to cross that figure without many issues. Prior to Onward’s pandemic-shortened theatrical run, Pixar’s Toy Story 4 and Incredibles 2 both hit $1 billion. The studio’s original film Coco grossed $807 million globally. While Pixar does have some notable duds on their résumé (Cars 3 and The Good Dinosaur), it’s extremely rare for one of their films to perform poorly at the box office. Given Lightyear’s ties to the Toy Story franchise, it should prove to be a hit. Box office projections point to a modest (by Pixar standards) $70-85 million debut, but it could always surpass those expectations a la Top Gun: Maverick. It’s facing minimal competition for its target demographic.

So by these standards Lightyear is 185 million in the red as of 7/23/22

IMDB estimates for Minions on a free site the estimated budget via IMDB is $80 Million. Even if we figure another 80 million in promotion in 14 less days Minions has not only turned a tidy profit but had done so on its domestic take alone. That makes the $342 million overseas take all gravy.

That my dear friends is the difference between making a movie “Woke” and making a movie for Children.

Sooner or later studios will decide losing 180+ a shot is a bad idea.