19 September 2013 1:57 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

The pope depicts art as an enterprise as important as prayer. Does he see the church – or himself – reflected in his top picks?

The wide-ranging and audacious interview given by Pope Francis to 16 Jesuit journals worldwide is already making waves for its frank talk about social issues and its argument that the church should be a "home for all". But Francis's big interview has another important component: it features extensive discussion of culture, as it figures in Francis's own life and as a portal into Christian thought.

The first Jesuit pope turns out to be a voracious cultural aficionado – "a Jesuit must be creative," Francis says at one point – but do his literary and artistic inclinations reveal anything about his religious orientation? Well, there's no overarching link among the many cultural touchstones – art, music, literature, cinema – that Francis drawn on in the interview. That pluralism is in itself a statement, »

- Jason Farago

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