Movie Review: God’s Not Dead

God's not dead, posterUPDATE: God’s Not Dead opened in the top five at the box office.

There are two types of “Christian movie” and both have their pros and cons. Big Hollywood films (I’m looking at you Noah) have the budget for things like famous actors, directors and really good special effects. But although the target audience is Christians the people making the film are often not. Noah hasn’t opened in the U.S. but I have a feeling it’s going more like 300 adapted for Christians and less like the Genesis narrative. The other type of movie is made by Christians but on a much smaller budget. What you get is unknown or has-been actors and really shallow script writing. I run the risk of hurting some feelings here, but I’m about to be honest (if Flywheel or Facing the Giants are your favorite movies ever, close this webpage). Those movies left me with the distinct impression that having faith and saying enough prayers will allow me to sell all my cars and/or win every football game this season. And after winning all the football games, despite having several losing seasons in a row, my wife will stay and our family will be happy and healthy. What happens if a faithful Christian loses a business, or every football game? What if I repent and say lots of prayers and my wife still leaves? Or loses the baby? While these films may be inspirational, it leads many to be critical of the Christian film industry. Continue reading

October Baby

October Baby, based on the true story of Gianna Jessen, opens in theaters March 23.  Jessen is the survivor of a failed abortion attempt.  I first learned of her back in 2008, when the Wall Street Journal (of all things) ran her story.  That was the year Barrack Obama ran for president; here’s what I wrote back when.

Tim Challies has written a review after seeing an early screening.  He was “pleasantly surprised” at how much he enjoyed it.  Tim reviews the film, and also analyzes the challenge facing any and every Christian film.

You could watch the trailer at, but why not click over to Gianna Jessen’s blog and watch it there.  There’s a trailer for the film, and also a behind the scenes sort of thing with Gianna.