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God's Army (2000)

 -  Drama  -  10 March 2000 (USA)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 767 users   Metascore: 38/100
Reviews: 62 user | 40 critic | 8 from Metacritic.com

Life as a Mormon missionary isn't what 19-year-old Brandon Allen expected: so many rules and so few successes. Los Angeles is as unrepentant as Sodom and Gomorrah. He's forced to share a ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Elder Allen
...
Elder Dalton
Jacque Gray ...
Sister Fronk
...
Elder Mangum
...
Elder Banks
Michael Buster ...
Elder Kinegar
...
Elder Sandoval
John Pentecost ...
President Beecroft
Lynne Carr ...
Sister Beecroft
Kelli Coleman ...
Sister Monson
Anthony Anselmi ...
Elder Harmer
Peter Jackson ...
Elder Downey
Seamus Hurley ...
Elder Rex
Francine Riber ...
Connie
Fawn Perez ...
Laura
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Storyline

Life as a Mormon missionary isn't what 19-year-old Brandon Allen expected: so many rules and so few successes. Los Angeles is as unrepentant as Sodom and Gomorrah. He's forced to share a small apartment with five young prank-loving missionaries and, to top it off, his first companion, 29-year-old Marcus Dalton, proves to be a harsh mentor. After only one day as a missionary, Allen is ready to hang up his necktie and go home. His point-of-view changes, however, as he begins to see the struggles and sacrifices that the other missionaries endure: Dalton, he soon learns, is fighting a losing battle with cancer. Banks, an African-American missionary, was disowned by his family when he joined the Mormon church. Kinegar, a fifth-generation Latter-Day Saint, finds himself doubting under the intellectual attacks of anti-Mormons. Working and living with these young men, Allen becomes a part of the drama occurring under the everyday surface of missionary life. After only a few intense days, ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Saving the world one soul at a time

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

10 March 2000 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$88,584 (USA) (10 March 2000)

Gross:

$2,628,829 (USA) (20 October 2000)
 »

Company Credits

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 »
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Technical Specs

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Elder Allen character background is loosely based on Richard Dutcher's own life. See more »

Goofs

The black name tags lacked the "The" in "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints." See more »

Quotes

Allen: Should we take the bus?
Dalton: I don't want to take the bus.
Allen: You're not tired?
Dalton: I'm exhausted, but if I sit down I'll fall asleep. If I fall asleep I'll probably lapse into a coma. If I lapse into a coma, I'll probably die, so I don't want to take the bus.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Gwen Dutcher is credited as "Sexy Mormon Lady." This is not an actual character in the film, but Richard Dutcher's wife. She gets another "crazy credit" in his film Brigham City. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Singles Ward (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Go to Hell
Written by Ryan Shupe
Performed by Ryan Shupe & the Rubberband
Courtesy of Tydal Wave Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
All in all a decent film
3 June 2000 | by (Paradise, CA) – See all my reviews

Let me first say that I am not a member of the LDS church. In fact I am agnostic. I recommend that if you are Mormon, you skip over this review.

I enjoyed watching this film. The way you enjoy listening to a lecture about an ancient civilization. The story is very simply about Mormon missionaries, with subplots that have varying degrees of creditability. This film is not a sanitized, sugar coated view of missionary life (aside from an obvious lack of profanity from those who slam the door in the face of missionaries). In fact, the opening scene of the movie consists of a drive through LA. Along the way you see tattoo parlors, strip clubs, and cops in the process of arresting a criminal. This film even contains a pair of prostitutes (don't get to excited, there is nothing going on).

The films main character is Elder Brandon Allen, a 19-year-old kid from Kansas. Allen is confused about the purpose of his mission and is struggling with the collapse of his family (his mom is leaving the church and his step-dad who brought him into the church is in prison for molesting children). Brandon's companion is Elder Dalton (played very well by director Richard Dutcher), a 29-year-old missionary who is dying of brain cancer. The relationship that develops between Allen and Dalton is predictable, but at the same time has the feel of realism.

There are a few scenes where we see the two missionaries attempting to share their religion with other, usually with the cliché reaction.

One thing that pleased me about this movie was the definite lack of religious ideas. Sure the missionaries pray and talk about God, but we are never given any real insight in to the fundamental ideals of Mormonism. In fact the film seem so devoid of these ideals that you get the impression that Dutcher was intentionally leaving them out. Perhaps because the majority of the audience will already know them and because the "others" don't need to hear them presented by this medium.

At times, God's Army starts to feel like an anti-Mormon movie. There is even a missionary who is reading books that question the validity of the ideas in the Book of Mormon.

The down points of this film include a under developed relationship between Allen and a female missionary. This relationship almost feels obligatory.

I was very drawn into the movie right up until the final 20 minutes. Dutcher ends the film in a way that is clearly intended to satisfy the Mormons.

If you like independent film and have an open mind, I would recommend seeing God's Army. If you like to go to a movie strictly for entertainment and don't like to think about what you're watching, you might want to skip this one.


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