I first started following Deacon Steven Greydanus about a decade ago, and since then he’s been someone I’ve looked up to. He is one of the very few Catholic public figures on Facebook who I have been able to wholeheartedly recommend to others. He’s modeled what constructive and charitable conversations can look like on social media. And, as a never-Trump prolifer who cares deeply about Catholic Social Teaching, his posts through the 2016 and 2020 elections helped make me feel like I still had a place in the Church.

But the reason I followed Deacon Greydanus in the first place was because he’s a movie critic, the first Catholic movie critic I found who helped me think deeper about movies instead of being moralistic about content.

I was homeschooled from 1st through 12th grade in the 90s and early 2000s, and the particular Catholic homeschool culture I grew up in included a fear of secular culture and media (I joke that I experienced the La Croix version of Shiny Happy People). Christian bookstores, music, and movies were safe spaces. But secular movies were viewed with a kind of suspicion. They were analyzed for bad content, particularly any sexual content, which would determine if the movie was good or bad (and implicitly, if the people seeing such a movie were good or bad).

What attracted me to Deacon Greydanus was his ability to engage with movies critically, with Catholic values and a Catholic worldview, but without fear or moralism.

I’ve chatted with him a few times on Messenger over the years, but I was really happy and honored to have this conversation with him. I hope you enjoy it!

This episode is available on Youtube and in your favorite podcast app.

This week, Paul talks with the Catholic film critic, Deacon Steven Greydanus. Steven explains how movies can change people for the good and help make the world a better place. They also discuss how to critically engage with movies without falling into fear or moralism, and how to pass those values onto our children. Finally, Steven shares what he thinks are the best movies of the past year.

Deacon Steven D. Greydanus has been writing about film since 2000, when he created Decent Films. Since then, he’s written regularly for a number of outlets including the National Catholic Register, Catholic Digest, Crux, Christianity Today, and Catholic World Report. Other bylines include RogerEbert.com, Slate, Bright Wall/Dark Room, and Our Sunday Visitor.

For over 18 years he wrote regularly for the National Catholic Register and was their film critic for nearly 11 years. His work at the Register was recognized several times by the Catholic Media Association Awards.

Steven is a member of the New York Film Critics Circle and a deacon in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark. He studied at the School of Visual Arts, Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary, and Immaculate Conception Seminary at Seton Hall University. Steven and his wife Suzanne have seven children.

Watch episode:


Ethan Hunt’s second act and Tom Cruise’s third: The unending impossible mission

Indiana Jones movies and Raiders of the Lost Ark: Why the original still stands alone

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is an incomplete triumph

Paid subscribers get to watch each episode before everyone else! Your support allows me to create this podcast and all the resources I’ve shared here.

Subscribe to the Pope Francis Generation:

ABOUT DOMINIC DE SOUZA SmartCatholics founder, Dominic de Souza, is a convert from radical traditionalism – inspired by WherePeterIs, Bishop Robert Barron, and Pope Francis. He is passionate about helping ordinary Catholics break the ‘bystander effect’, and be first responders. “We don’t have to be geniuses. We just have to show up with witness and kindness. Christ does the rest.” Today he hosts the SmartCatholics community.

JOIN FATHERS HEART ACADEMY Discover the truth and hope of Church teachings through a study of magisterial documents, access to Paul Fahey’s podcasts and articles, and a supportive community of learners. Join here:




ABOUT SMARTCATHOLICS If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with your one friend you think would really like to see it. Come and regroup with us in the free, Catholic community on smartcatholics.com We’re free of trolls and ads and toxicity, faithful to the Holy Father Pope Francis and the Church, and committed to a culture of kindness and learning. Sound like you? Come and join us. Join the free community:

Send us a gift: https://smartcatholics.com/donate

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/smartcatholics/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/smartcathol…

Discuss this article!

Keep the conversation going in our SmartCatholics Group! You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter.

Liked this post? Take a second to support Where Peter Is on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!

Paul Fahey lives in Michigan with his wife and four kids. For the past eight years, he has worked as a professional catechist. He has an undergraduate degree in Theology and is currently working toward a Masters Degree in Pastoral Counseling. He is a retreat leader, catechist formator, writer, and a co-founder of Where Peter Is. He is also the founder and co-host of the Pope Francis Generation podcast. His long-term goal is to provide pastoral counseling for Catholics who have been spiritually abused, counseling for Catholic ministers, and counseling education so that ministers are more equipped to help others in their ministry.

Share via
Copy link