Examining the film industry’s new religious trend

The film industry this year has brought in several new movie ideas, including ones with a Christian theme. As a newspaper at Catholic school, The Knight Errant took a special interest in reviewing these movies that portray a Christian light in the media.

“Noah,” starring Russell Crowe, hit theaters March 28th, and was not the only movie to contain a Christian theme this year. Though this film was an over-dramatic version of this classic Bible tale, it appealed to audiences of all kinds, religious or not.

"Noah" press image

“Noah,” starring Russell Crowe, hit theaters March 28th, and was not the only movie to contain a Christian theme this year. Though this film was an over-dramatic version of this classic Bible tale, it appealed to audiences of all kinds, religious or not.

Audiences looking to see an over-dramatized and unadventurous version of this well known tale should go see “Noah.” This film is a poor attempt at a typical Hollywood blockbuster, with too many overly-dramatized scenes and characters. Neither biblically accurate, nor fitting for a Christian movie, “Noah” tried, and failed, to make a Bible story exciting and adventurous. Instead, the film came off as a bizarre twist to the Noah’s Ark story, including giant rock monster creatures, crazy barbaric villains, and Noah going a little insane. Honestly, the movie would have been better if it stayed with the original Noah’s Ark story. Renowned actors such as Russell Crowe should have made the movie worthwhile, but unfortunately he did not meet audiences standards. Only Emma Watson proved to show her talent, despite the horrid script and odd plot. Overall, “Noah” did not meet the expectations of one of the Bible’s most famous tales, due to the film’s lack of plot and acting talent.

God’s Not Dead
Most college freshmen may not stand up to an over prideful philosophy teacher, but Josh Wheaton, played by Shane Harper, does just that. When Professor Radisson, played by Kevin Sorbo, tells his students to write “God is Dead” on a sheet of paper with their signature. Josh cannot bring himself to, due to his Christian beliefs. Professor Radisson tells Josh that he must prepare three lectures proving that God’s not dead if he will not sign the paper. Taking the challenge, Wheaton studies information regarding the existence of God, and has to present lectures to win over the class, despite Radisson’s constant disputing and arguing. The main storyline revolves around Josh and his attempt to prove God’s not dead, but also follows other Christians and their faith, even featuring Willie Robertson from “Duck Dynasty.” With all the characters weaving together in the end, the storyline does not get confusing, even when switching from character to character. Due to the mostly inexperienced cast, the acting is not the best, but this Christian movie still seems to empower the audience and make the viewer feel stronger in their faith. The movie does not feel dull, which can be attributed to the interesting dialogue about God’s existence as well as the bearable running time of just over an hour and a half, keeping the movie from becoming unnecessarily long. “God’s Not Dead” is a movie with a storyline about Christianity, while still being easy to understand, unlike some Christian films. “God’s Not Dead” is a good movie for not just someone looking for a Christian movie, but also anyone in search of an enjoyable film.

Heaven is for Real
Heaven is for Real” tells the inspiring story of Colton Burpo’s experience of heaven during a near death experience. Based on the book of the same title, this movie focuses on local pastor/ Colton’s father, Todd Burpo’s, struggle with his son’s emergency surgery, and near death experience. After Colton survived the surgery, he spoke of his experience in heaven, including having met his miscarried sister, and having watched his father pary over him during the surgery. Audiences hoping to see a movie about what heaven is like will be disappointed. The movie lacks scenes of Colton’s experience in Heaven, and revolves around how Todd Burpo has to find courage during this time. However, the story remains truly amazing despite the dull plot. Colton, played by Connor Corum, is adorable and makes the movie uplifting with his positivity. Compared to other Christian movies, “Heaven is for Real” lacks creativity in its screenplay, but the movie pulls at the audience’s heartstrings through emotional scenes that portray the intense relationship Colton has with his father. “Heaven is For Real” questions whether Colton truly went to heaven, and the film causes all viewers to hope that Heaven is in fact, for real

Son of God
“Son of God” chronicles the life of Jesus, beginning at his birth, but emphasizes on his ministry leading up to his crucifixion. Beginning with Jesus meeting Peter, “Son of God” shows how Jesus became influential in Jerusalem. The twelve disciples, along with Mary Magdalene, follow Jesus as he teaches of heaven and God, and his followers continue to believe in him despite constant criticism by nonbelievers and Romans. Once the high priests find Jesus as a threat, they persuade Judas to betray Jesus, and alert Pontius Pilate to arrest him. Accurately portraying Jesus’ life, death, and Resurrection, The Passion story is very inspiring and extremely dramatic. Director, Christopher Spencer, may try to follow the story of Jesus’ life accurately, but the movie is too long, being over two hours. “Son of God” does better than other Christian movies in maintaining the true story of Jesus without changing it to appeal to non-christian viewers. The movie uses just enough violence to make the film bearable, making some scenes very intense, which may cause some viewers to look way. All in all, “Son of God” is a good movie that all Christians should see, not because of superb acting, but because the film accurately depicts Jesus’ life.