5 Must See Christian Movies of 2015
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”— John 8:12
Directed by: Andrew Erwin & Jon Erwin
Produced by: Kevin Downes & Daryl Lefever
Written by: Quinton Peeples & Jon Erwin
Starring: Sean Astin , Nic Bishop , Caleb Castille, Sherri Shepherd, Jon Voight , C. Thomas Howell
Music by: Paul Mills
Cinematography: Kristopher Kimlin
Edited by: Brent McCorkle
Production Company: Crescent City Pictures & Red Sky Studios
Distributed by: Pure Flix Entertainment
Running time: 124 minutes
IMDb Rating: 6.4 /10
Rotten Tomatoes Average Rating: 6.4/10
The film, Woodlawn, is based on the true story of Tony Nathan. He is an African American football coach and former running back.
The film begins with a quote from Martin Luther King Jr.: "Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that" followed by Hank Erwin (Sean Astin) speaking in the High School Woodlawn on a day of high racial tension. With unfilled dreams of being a baseball player, Hank Erwin , a Christian evangelical, become a chaplain and decides to focus on the salvation of the people surrounding the Woodlawn High School.
As the film unfolds Tony Nathan (Caleb Castille) has not only become the most talented football player at the school but one of the best high school players in the States. It shows the rise of first African American football superstar. He and other black students desegregate Woodlawn High School in Birmingham, Alabama in 1973 after a government-mandate. As cross burnings and riots erupt in the city of Birmingham, Tandy Gerelds (Nic Bishop), the Woodlawn Colonels football coach, struggles to calm racial tensions between his players.
It was only when Gerelds allows Hank Erwin to speak to his team that real change begins. He tells the players a "better way" is possible through following Jesus. "I'm asking you to make a decision to change, to forgive, to choose Jesus," says Hank Erwin. Because of their decision to follow Jesus, the players in Woodlawn learn to choose forgiveness. They learn to choose love over hate. The film shows the power of forgiveness and love which can overcome differences within society.
More than 40 players, almost the entire team, comprising both black and white, give their lives over to Jesus Christ that has a profound effect on the coach, the school and the community.
The movie, "Woodlawn" is the true story of how unity and revival saved a city torn apart by race. It shares the story of how one’s faith can be found, renewed and restored. It also portrays a powerful story of faith, hope, love, and redemption during even the most hardest of times.
When Tony wakes up from his nightmare, the clock reads 7:14, which alludes to the movie's theme verse from the Bible, 2 Chronicles 7:14: "If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.
Directed by : Alex Kendrick
Produced by : Stephen Kendrick & Gary Wheeler
Written by : Alex Kendrick & Stephen Kendrick
• Priscilla Shirer
• T.C. Stallings
• Karen Abercrombie
• Alex Kendrick
• Beth Moore
Cinematography : Bob M. Scott
• Affirm Films
• Kendrick Brothers Productions
• Provident Films
Distributed by : TriStar Pictures
Running time : 120 minutes
IMDb Rating: 6.3 /10
Rotten Tomatoes Average Rating: 4.4/10
War Room 2015
The movie, War Room, explores the power of prayer which can have a profound effect on marriage, parenting, career, friendship and every other aspect of our lives. Miracles start to happen just as soon as someone starts praying.
War Room is so named as director of the film Kendrick says "We called it 'War Room' because, like the military, we should seek God for the right strategy before going into combat. By combat, I mean daily issues we face in our culture."
Tony (T.C. Stallings) and Elizabeth Jordan (Priscilla Shirer) have it all—great jobs, a beautiful daughter, and their dream house. Despite their apparent success, Tony and Elizabeth Jordan’s world is actually crumbling under the strain of a failing marriage. While Tony basks in his professional success and flirts with temptation, Elizabeth resigns herself to increasing bitterness. As pharmaceutical salesman involves frequent travelling, Tony is almost never there for his daughter, Danielle (Alena Pitts). He has been verbally abusive with Elizabeth and has thoughts about cheating on his wife with other women.
But their lives take an unexpected u-turn when Elizabeth, a realtor, meets her newest client, Miss Clara (Karen Abercrombie). Miss Clara is a feisty old lady whose Bible-thumping zealousness is very prominent. Elizabeth is challenged to establish a “war room” and make a battle plan of prayer for her family. Miss Clara advises that Elizabeth should be fighting alongside, not against, her errant husband, to battle against the one responsible for their unhappiness: Satan. As she kneels to pray, miracle begins to happen in her family.
The film ends with something Elizabeth loves and long for; Tony giving Elizabeth her favourite dessert while giving her a foot massage. And Miss Clara, now living with her son, praying a powerful prayer in the still of the night.
Prayer is not asking. Prayer is putting oneself in the hands of God, at His disposition, and listening to His voice in the depth of our hearts.— Mother Teresa
Directed by: Jonathan M. Gunn
Written by: Chuck Konzelman & Cary Solomon
• Mira Sorvino
• Sean Astin
• Alexa PenaVega
• Ted McGinley
• Andrea Logan White
• Cybill Shepherd
• Lee Majors
• Madison Pettis
• Brian Bosworth
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Run Time: 120 mins.
IMDb Rating: 5.9 /10
Rotten Tomatoes Average Rating: 4.2/10
Do You Believe? 2015
The film begins with an opening quote from James 2:17 which read “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead”.
The film revolves around 12 people, 12 lives and 12 stories.
A married couple (Lee Majors and Cybill Shepherd) mourning the loss of their daughter
An EMT (Liam Matthews) and his nurse wife (Valerie Dominguez)& her PTSD-afflicted brother (Joseph Julian Soria, “Army Wives”)
A suicidal young woman (Alexa PenaVega)
A pregnant teen (Madison Pettis)
Two gang members (Schwayze and Senyo Amoaku)
A homeless woman (Mira Sorvino) and her daughter (Makenzie Moss)
A generous man (Brian Bosworth) with a troubled past
Narrating the story in the film is Pastor Matt (Ted McGinley), who is inspired by an encounter with a street preacher (Delroy Lindo) to give a sermon reminding his parishioners that faith is not sufficient; it must be put into action. His words have ripple effects that change the lives of many people.
What do all of these people have in common? It is a yearning, a desire, a calling to be more than how the world views them.
The core message for all involved in the drama is three simple words: "Do You Believe?"
YES I DO BELIEVE, each of these stories can be true; they are every day stories that can happen to you and me.
“Belief takes you to your knees, then raises you to your feet,” says Pastor Matthew in this movie.
Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.— 1 John 5:5
Directed By: Jerry Jameson
Run Time: 1 hour 37 minutes
Cast: Elle Graham, Kate Mara, Claudia Church, Gina Stewart
Mpaa Rating: PG-13
IMDb Rating: 5.3 /10
Rotten Tomatoes Average Rating: 4.4/10
The film, Captive, is an adaptation of “Unlikely Angel: The Untold Story of the Atlanta Hostage Hero” by Ashley Smith with Stacy Mattingly. The movie is based on a real-life story of Brian Nichols (David Oyelowo), who murdered four people on March 11, 2005.
On March 11, 2005, Brian Nichols escapes from the Fulton County courthouse in Atlanta, during his trial involving a rape case. He murders the judge presiding over his trial, Rowland Barnes, and court reporter Julie Brandau. He also shoots Sergeant Hoyt Teasley who was guarding him and then later kills ICE Special Agent David G. Wilhelm, who was off-duty at his home.
Nichols becomes the subject of a citywide manhunt. His frantic escape brings him to the apartment of Ashley Smith (Kate Mara), a waitress and single mom on the verge of losing her daughter due to a nasty drug addiction, whom he holds hostage. Brian is initially aggressive and controlling towards Ashley, but he eventually calms down. Smith gets through this time inspired by Rick Warren's best-selling book while Nichols searches for redemption. As she reads aloud, Smith and her would-be killer come to a crossroads where despair and death intersect hope. Brian starts thinking about his life. Is there any value to his life which prompts him to abort his escape from the authorities and face a life in prison? Ultimately she escapes from the hostage and Nichols turns himself in to the law.
So, the movie “Captive” is story of two broken people forming an unlikely connection, who discover a sense of purpose in their lives. This movie tells an uplifting story about God giving meaning to our lives, and how, without His power, we can be trapped in various problems.
We all face major crossroads in life. At those times, we have to choose which way to go. Standing at these crossroads, moving in the right direction is the story of the film "Captive”. When grace enters into our broken lives; it is very quiet, it is invisible, and it is almost imperceptible. It comes into the nitty-gritty of our lives, where sin has taken control.
Director: Michael Polish
Producer: Dawn Parouse, George Furla, Randall Emmett, Rick Jackson, Tim Sullivan
Writers: Don Piper - Book, Michael Polish
Composer / Music: Michael W. Smith, Tyler Smith
Cinematographer: M. David Mullen
Production Company: Emmett/Furla Films, Family Christian Entertainment, Giving Films
Distribution Company: Family Christian Book Stores, Samuel Goldwyn Films
Starring: Hayden Christensen, Kate Bosworth, Michael W. Smith, Michael Harding
IMDb Rating: 4.6 /10
Rotten Tomatoes Average Rating: 4.4/10
90 Minutes in Heaven 2015
“90 Minutes in Heaven” is based on Don Piper biographic novel of the same name. 90 Minutes in Heaven is a 2004 New York Times best-selling Christian book written by Don Piper with Cecil Murphey. It documents the author's near-death experience in 1989. The Book remained on the New York Times best-seller list for more than five years and has sold over six million copies.
Piper (Hayden Christensen) is introduced in the film as a Texas pastor blessed with a loving family comprises of a beautiful wife (Kate Bosworth) and three adorable low-maintenance kids. He has a burning desire to do the Lord’s will by establishing a new church.
While driving across a two-lane bridge near Huntsville on his way home from a state-wide Baptist conference, Piper was involved in a horrific car crash and was pronounced dead at the scene and covered by a tarp for the next 90 minutes. A man comes along, who feels compel to pray for the victim; he gets in the car and starts to pray while singing a hymn “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.” Piper starts singing along and EMT’s confirm that he now has a pulse. During those 90 minutes he have seen Heaven and visited with deceased relatives while there.
With the support and prayers of Eva, his beloved, their three kids and friends, Don clings to his faith in God and fights to regain a semblance of his earlier life. This is incredible story of perseverance and overcoming the challenges of life—and death.
It brings hope and encouragement to all who watch the movie.