Last Saturday, I had the pleasure of seeing COURAGEOUS, the new movie by Sherwood Baptist Church. Since the movie is in the forefront of a lot of conversations right now, including a Top-6 showing at the box office last week(!), I thought I would use this space to share some comments about the movie for those who may be trying to decide whether to see it.
I’ll start with full disclosure – I was not anxious to see the movie. I did enjoy Facing the Giants and Fireproof – but I enjoyed them in the way I enjoy a good sermon. In both of those movies, the message captured me more than the story or the acting. So I when I went to see Courageous, I expected more of the same. But I was pleasantly surprised.
I did not take long to realize that Courageous was going to be different. By the time the opening scene ended, my heart was pumping, and I was invested. And the story moved forward at a nice pace. There was a moment in the middle when I wondered if they couldn’t make the movie shorter . . . but looking back now, I’m glad they didn’t. Every character was intriguing. Every storyline was meangingful and worthwhile. And there was a nice, full-circle feel between the first action scene and the last action scene that brought everything together.
As far as the acting, again, I got more than I expected. I don’t expect that anyone on the cast will be nominated for an Academy Award, but I think the ultimate testimony to the quality of acting in this film is that I did not think about it. In other words, there wasn’t a moment when I had to separate the actors from the story. Everyone played their part well – and some, like Alex Kenrick, Ken Bevel, and Robert Amaya were even compelling.
In short, my laughs were sincere, and so were my tears. (I shed plenty of tears). The movie really affected me. I highly recommend this to everyone – Christians and non-Christians alike. And I tip my cap to our friends at Sherwood Baptist for taking on this powerful ministry.
One more thing – The message of Courageous is one that is very near to my heart. A few weeks ago, I preached on the incredible importance of fathers in the life of children, and then penned this entry. I pray that men across our country will see this movie, and leave with a burden to re-invest in the lives of their children, and to take seriously the mission that God has given us to “protect and serve” our families. It is a dangerous world out there, and our kids need us more than ever!