The Redemption of Henry Myers
Network Premier: March 23rd, 2014
DVD release: June 10th, 2014
Dove Rating: 5 Stars for ages 12+
My Rating: 1 star for discerning audiences only
It was a better quality film than most Independent Christian Films I’ve seen. The acting was decent, the cinematography was good. It was watchable…which is definitely a step in the right direction production-wise but can also be alarming if the message isn’t good.
The Redemption of Henry Myers was a film I wanted to like–and did enjoy at first. All the right elements were in place: basic character development, a solid character arc, endearing protagonist with shady backstory, antagonists out to get main character, main character that has to make big decision, plot twist that escalates tension, gripping scenes of powerful emotion, and finally, the heart-warming redemption of the main character that we’ve been expecting since reading the movie’s title. But all of this marked by the simplicity and profound naiveté characteristic of a manuscript written by a thirteen-year old girl. I’ve read a few, so I should know–heck, I’ve written a few!
But what passes as naiveté in thirteen-year-old girls is bad theology in adults. We are called to a higher level of discernment and must sift and test even the films that at first seem “good.”
#12. MOUNTAINS ON THE OCEAN FLOOR
Oftentimes our own sins or the sins of others seem too deep and all signs of change invisible to our mortal eyes, but for those of us in Christ we cling in faith to the promise “he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion” even when we can’t see Him working. And for those outside of Christ we are given hope too for “the Spirit moves where it wills”. We often our unable to see the working of the Holy Spirit, it’s like “mountains on the ocean floor”–one day we’ll see the fruit but for now, “only God can see it grow”.
There are not many Christian films that I find worth a second watching–much less a third. But this one does. As Gianna Jessen, the inspiration for the film said, “I laughed so hard and cried so hard, and healed.” OctoberBaby is a celebration of life, of love, of adoption, of forgiveness, delivering it’s message with wit, with passion and with skill.
Sadly, many Christians I’ve talked to dislike the film and call it too “worldly” because in it they see applications of modesty principles applied differently than they do, because they see Christian characters making bad choices and putting themselves in compromising circumstances, because they see a “rebellious” daughter and a father who apologizes and pass the film off as a quasi-Christian imitation of the secular glorification of teenage-rebellion.
“It’s just another Flicka. Just another Little Mermaid. Just another Finding Nemo.”
And they’re wrong.
DANCING IN THE MINEFIELDS
by Andrew Peterson
Love is hard “but I believe that’s what the promise is for”. (One of the most beautiful songs on marriage I have heard.)
THE SNOW QUEEN
(The inspiration for Disney’s hit film, “Frozen” and perhaps C. S. Lewis’ book “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe” as well)
How does Frozen compare with the original fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson?