Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Excellent Movie: "Courageous" (Coming 30 Sep 2011)

On Monday, by invitation of Outreach Canada, my wife and I attended the pre-screening of the upcoming movie called, "Courageous." It was a private screening of the movie, intended for pastors and ministry leaders in various parts of Canada. The film is scheduled to be released on 30 Sep 2011 in North America. Thus, as a pre-release, I am limited by what I can share on this blog. The following is a snippet from the press release. [Watch trailer here.]

"Courageous, the fourth release from of Sherwood Pictures, the moviemaking ministry of Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia, tells the story of four police officers who unite to be as courageous in their homes as they are on the streets. As they grapple with the issue of absentfatherhood and fatherlessness, they decide to turn their hearts toward God and to steer their families to a renewed commitment to Christ in the home." (Movie Press Release, 26-Aug-2011)
The basic conviction of the people behind the movie is the firm belief that fathers are critical to the functioning of a family. Any family.
"Today, fatherlessness in Canada is widespread and its effects are far reaching. Studies show that fatherless children are at a dramatically greater risk of drug and alcohol abuse, mental illness, suicide, poor educational performance, teen pregnancy and criminality. Even in homes where the father is present, he may be struggling with career, life’s purpose or marital issues. Dads are often busy and disconnected. The movie Courageous invites men to make a profound change for the sake of their families, collectively altering the future of our nation as men put into practice what fatherhood should be." (Press release, 26-Aug-2011)
My Thoughts

The movie is first rate, considering the fact that most of the people behind the show are essentially volunteers who could have made more money in Hollywood. Instead, they pour their own money, resources, and time to bring across a message. A message of hope. A message to wake up the world. Though this is a Christian-based film, there are so many practical and relevant messages for ALL families, not just Christian. In fact, I will suggest to everybody, that if the movie brings about a good turn in society at large, where families become more united, more responsible in society, and more active in promoting love and goodwill, why not?

Alex Kendrick and Ken Bevel play shining roles in terms of acting prowess and the professional manner they go about with their performances. I enjoy seeing how they bring to life the difficult emotions they experience. The central theme is fatherhood. Throughout the film, references are made to research that says more than 70% of the crimes committed in America are by those who come from broken families, and fatherless homes. By fatherless, it does not mean physical absence. It also means any kind of absence. Scene after scene, I find it hard to hold back my tears in the many touching scenes. Scenes of grief. Scenes of missed opportunities. Scenes of forgiveness. Scenes of resolution to make the best of whatever that's left. Scenes of standing up for the truth regardless of consequences. Scenes of integrity. Scenes of courage. The movie does such a good job that to me it brings to life essential elements of what commitment is. Commitment to the family, to work colleagues, to integrity, and for Christians, to God.

Scene from the movie: Courageous
I look at the current crop of movies in the market. The current hit, 'Contagion' feeds on fear and spreads fear. The rest works on the usual formula of violence, sex, superheroes, fantasy, while entertaining, do not drive home family values that one can take away. None of them is like 'courageous.'

As I was driving back home after the movie, I asked my wife if we should promote the movie in the Church. She gave me a resounding: YES! That alone is sufficient affirmation for me. Do yourself and your family a favour. Buy tickets for all. Better still, after watching it, let your heart lead you to be a better person, and for fathers, a doubly better father.

My opinion is that if you have money only for two tickets this year, let Courageous be one. The other is to buy a ticket to invite another father you know to watch it. If you are outside US/Canada, just keep a lookout for this movie. Make sure you bring along a box of Kleenex. For you, and also for the ones sitting around you.

Rating: 5 stars of 5.


1 comment:

Luxembourg said...

This is an amazing movie that will touch your heart in many different ways. It will move you to tears and laughter and then back again to tears throughout the whole movie. The characters and storyline keep you involved to the very end. You will leave the theater contemplating the life changing message that this movie delivers. Well done!!

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