God's Country: A Christian Film
God's Country The Movie
God’s Country is a 2012 comedy-drama-family film which is directed by Chris Armstrong. The film is set in Los Angeles and the Mojave Desert. It stars Jenn Gotzon, Gib Gerard, Michael Toland, and Daniel Hugh Kelly as the main characters.
The film revolves around MEGHAN DOHERTY (Jenn Gotzon) who is an investment executive at Whitaker Associates. The story begins with Meghan Doherty showing off her skills at closing a multi-million dollar deal. She is depicted as a self-centered woman who only cares about money and career.
Her mother and even her loyal friends take a back seat in her life, they are not as important as the stuff her money can buy. She owns a Ferrari which is her pride and joy, and she loves expensive jewelries.
MR. RANDOLPH WHITAKER (Daniel Hugh Kelly), Meghan’s boss has made a deal with the Yakamoto Brothers to handle their investment. Mr. Whitaker needs 5000 acres in the Mojave Desert to build a casino for the Yakamoto Brothers but in the middle of the Mojave Desert is a 1000-acre land owned by the Graham Ministries. The land is already in foreclosure but the owner refuses to cooperate. Meghan is asked to drive up to the Mojave and offer the owner, EDEN GRAHAM (Michael Toland) a huge amount of money to give up his land before it goes to auction.
There is a lot riding in the deal so Mr. Whitaker has sent his top investment banker to do the job. He is sure that Meghan can do what others have failed to do, to make Eden Graham take the money, sign the papers, and give up God’s Country. To Megan, the assignment is the deal of a lifetime because it means more money and the chance to advance in her career much further.
Meghan drives to God’s Country where she tells Eden Graham her company does not want to risk anyone else attempting to buy the property, so she is offering him money and all he has to do is sign the power of ownership over to Whitaker Associates. Eden Graham believes that God can deliver God’s Country from the clutches of the bank.
Instead of signing the papers, Eden Graham makes a counter offer to Meghan. She stays at God’s Country for six days to see what they are doing and to watch God’s blessings unfold. If she does not see why the land is so important, he is going to sign the deal before the land goes to auction.
She agrees and what she has thought to be an easy deal has been a bit difficult for her who is not used to be in the wild. For starters, there is no phone signal in the area, there is no wi-fi and she has gotten disconnected from the world that she is so used to.
Her assistant at work, her friend, and her mother can not contact her for several days. It is so unlike her and they become worried. Even her boss is worried, perhaps more about the deal than about Meghan.
God’s Country is also run by Eden’s wife, CAROLYN GRAHAM (Laura Gardner) and his son, JACOB “JAKE” GRAHAM (Gib Gerard). At first, Meghan finds it hard to keep up with the activities in the camp but Eden Graham makes it clear to her that if she does not work with her team, the deal is off. She is given a trailer for her six-day stay, and has to wake up at 6 am for prayer before breakfast. She has to go hiking and help clean up. She is rebellious at every turn but Eden Graham keeps her in line.
No one can really guess when her turning point has started. One night, she is watching a group of men around a bonfire when someone talks about how important family is, how important it is to be loved, and to be together with the family. Then she learns that Jake has graduated from Harvard Business School but has chosen to come back and help his parents run the place by being a counselor. She also learns about Jake’s vision, to build a Christian College in God’s Country, to give scholarships to those who need them but his vision remains a vision since they need some venture capitalist to invest in his project. He is hopeful though, since he does not know the financial crisis that God’s Country is in, no one knows except Eden Graham and Meghan.
Meghan has started to enjoy his stay in the camp, participating in its activities, and she now has deeper appreciation of the land’s beauty. There is also a closeness that has developed between her and Jake but Meghan tells herself that she is there for business, not for anything personal.
She has also developed some kind of friendship with GERI, the chirpy girl whom Mrs. Graham has asked to be with Meghan in the trailer. She finds it surprising that the girl has a major in law yet works as a counselor in the camp.
Meghan starts to realize that there are more important things than career and money. It was at that point in the movie when one of the many calls for her has come through, and it is from Mr. Whitaker. She presses ignore on her phone.
A day before the auction, Meghan tells Eden Graham about the Yakamoto Brothers' intention to build a casino on his land and that there’s nothing Eden Graham can do because the auction is imminent. She now understands that there is something very special about the land and she persuades Eden Graham to be proactive. They have to find someone to invest in Jake’s vision, to pay off the debt so they can put the camp back in operation.
Eden Graham has done everything he can, call his friends with money to bail him out but no one can help him. All he has is his faith in God. He decides to be honest with his family.
He tells his family about the foreclosure and the auction. He tells them about the offer and that they can use the money to start over in a new city. While most of the members of the camp are saddened by the news, Jake is angry that he has been lied to, he is angry at Meghan for misleading him, he is angry at his father for keeping the truth from him.
On the morning of the auction, Meghan is out there in the wild talking to herself, debating whether she has to go through with the deal and take the thing that these people care so much about, or lose her job, money, and career. She is confused.
PASTOR TINSLEY (Gonzalo Menendez) assures her that if it is God’s will, then it is His will, and that she is only His messenger.
Meghan feels like there is something she has to do. Suddenly, she knows just what she has to do. She rushes to Jake and asks him to follow her in his truck with his Christian College plans as she drives out with her Ferrari. Jake finds it hard to trust her but she tells him that if he does not trust her, then he must trust God.
Meghan goes to a businessman who loves her Ferrari and gives the car to him, then shows him the plans of Jake’s vision to persuade him to invest in it. Just as the auction for God’s Country starts, Meghan and Jake arrive to stop the auction. The debt of Graham Ministries has been paid off and God’s Country is going to continue to save lives and give back.
Meghan has lost her job at Whitaker Associates but she is happy and gets into partnership with the Grahams to build Jake’s vision of a Christian College. She reconnects with her mother, her friends, and she has found her man in Jake Graham. Most of all, she has found peace and joy in her heart.
Jenn Gotzon as Meghan Doherty
Gib Gerard as Jake Graham
Michael Toland as Eden Graham
Daniel Hugh Kelly as Mr. Whitaker
Suzanne Ford as Emma Doherty (Meghan’s mother)
Todd Duffey as Adam (Meghan’s assistant and friend)
Arlene Santana as Valentina (Meghan’s best friend)
Laura Gardner as Carolyn Graham (Eden Graham’s wife)
Stephanie Barnes as Geri
Gonzalo Menendez as Pastor Tinsley
God’s Country has won Director’s Choice Awards at Gig Harbor Film Festival in 2011. Jenn Gotzon also has won Best Actress Award at Pocono Mountain Film Festival in 2013.
This is an excellent film for the whole family to watch. This is a Christian film showing how God changes lives and changes hearts.