Friday, September 26, 2008

Movie Review: Fireproof

From the same self-proclaimed "small church in Georgia" who brought us Facing the Giants, comes yet another Christian film, Fireproof, this time dealing with the subject of marriage. Caleb Holt (Kirk Cameron) is a decorated fireman who lives by an old fire fighter's motto: never leave you partner behind. But he's about to do just that in his marriage. His wife Catherine (Erin Bethea) have been married for ten years, but have drifted so far apart that they file for divorce. However, Caleb's father (Harris Malcom), unwilling to see a relationship fall apart so easily, convinces his son so try an experiment called "The Love Dare", a forty day challenge of showing love to one's spouse in order to "fireproof" the relationship. Caleb takes the dare, mainly for his dad and not his wife. But eventually he comes to realize he still loves his wife as God teaches him the true meaning of love and marriage. But is it too late to convince Catherine that he has truly changed?

The Pros: So often the biggest problem with Christian films is the writing. The dialogue is written stiffly, especially is the faith-related parts, and the characters sound as if they're reading from a Sunday school book. But while this film does still have that problem is a few areas, it's not nearly as bad as usual. They characters feel real and keep our interest. The humor is good, the acting believable, and the emotions are heartfelt.

Also, the makers of this film have obviously come a long way since Facing the Giants. Not only were the able to obtain a recognizable actor like Kirk Cameron, but they are able to afford bigger & better effects than last time. Speaking of Kirk Cameron, you have to admire him. It's clear he is not doing this for a paycheck or recognition, as this is still a small, independent film with a limited budget. He's here because he believes in the project, and as such gives a great performance.

The Cons: As I said, the dialogue still feels pretty scripted is some parts, though it's not as bad as it could have been. Aside from Kirk Cameron, none of the cast has any recognition, though they fill their roles well enough. As Christian films go, this one has zero subtlety. It's clearly made for the church-going crowd, so if that's not you, this is not your film.

The End: In comparison with other Christian films, this is definitely a step above the rest. It's much more well written and entertaining than most, and certainly pleases it's target audience. Hopefully we'll see more from the people, who, for a church, have proved capable filmmakers.

My Rating:

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