Two pairs of Mormon missionaries from America live in a beaten-up apartment in the Dutch city of Haarlem. Their personalities are distinctly different. Appropriately, the most responsible ... See full summary »
When Jonathan Jordan gets divorced he's thrust back into the world of being a single Mormon - a world who's ultimate goal is eternal marriage. Struggling to fit in, Jonathan decides to stop... See full summary »
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 »
Matthew A. Brown,
Terry Noonan returns home to New York's Hells Kitchen after a ten year absence. He soon hooks up with childhood pal Jackie who is involved in the Irish mob run by his brother Frankie. Terry... See full summary »
Dennis Buckstead has the hardest calling in his church. Not only has he been asked to coach a group of non-basketball players in his church but the bishop has demanded that he lead the team... See full summary »
Set in 1965 this comedy/drama follows the adventures of a 12 year old Jewish girl named Hannah who is best friends with Grace, a 12 year old Catholic girl. They both attend the local ... See full summary »
Although Elder Farrell and Elder Lozano are assigned together as Mormon missionary companions they are a study in contrasts. Farrell, from Utah, is bookish, sensitive, focused on seeking potential converts, and dedicated to following mission rules. Elder Lozano was shot by a rival gang when being initiated into the Latino gang of his brothers and then was converted to the LDS church while recovering at the same time as a missionary in the hospital. Due to go home in three weeks, he shows more interest in playing basketball than teaching people. One day while going door to door in Venice, California they find themselves caught in crossfire as a Latino gang does a drive-by shooting. Lozano renders aid to Carl, an African American gang member who is seriously wounded. Upon recovery, Carl thanks him and becomes interested in learning about what the missionary has to teach about redemption. Returning home, the elders find an ill man lying on the street and take him back to their apartment.... Written by
The film does not mention it, but clearly describes Elder Lozano as a Colombian character, since he used to be a gang-member with his brother, a common case in Medellín, a Colombian city where the last name "Lozano" is very common. See more »
[the elders are playing basketball on "P" day. Speaking to Elder Farrell]
Come on. Get in here man, we're getting our butts kicked.
[Elder Farrell shakes his head negatively]
Come on Farrell, we're one man short.
I'll do it.
I said, we're one MAN short.
You're one short man, that's what you are.
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Independent filmmaker, Richard Dutcher, follows his GOD'S ARMY and BRIGHAM CITY with a film that will reach out and touch more then just members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons), if discriminating moviegoers can be made aware of the film. STATES OF GRACE, like Dutcher's first film, GOD'S ARMY, takes place in the Los Angeles area, but it takes you into tough neighborhoods where life can be snuffed out suddenly. The story (which I will not dwell on)examines the strengths and weaknesses of its characters, people from all walks of life and of many faiths and beliefs. It beautifully witnesses that Christ loves all people, not just those who have found Him and are striving to live better lives.
Dutcher, who wrote,edited and directed this film, has a way of creating interesting characters and complex situations that do not take the easy path. He's unconventional--and this film, like his BRIGHAM CITY, will cause some to be uneasy and shy away from viewing it. And that will be their loss.
The cast is rich in numbers of characters that both fascinate and live. Ignacio Serricchio, Lucas Fleischer, Lamont Stephens, Rachel Emmers and Jo-Sei Ikeda are each quite remarkable. The character of Louis, a homeless preacher (played by Jo-Sei Ikeda) who the Mormon Elders befriend is one of the films highlights. Ikeda has a rich voice and delivers a moving performance in a part that is very well written.
STATES OF GRACE has one of the most moving climaxes that I have ever experienced. One of Richard Dutcher's great strengths as a writer and director is bringing together the elements of his story into a powerful conclusion that moves the viewer and seals the meanings of the film.
Ken Glassing's cinematography is first rate, as is Ben Carson's scoring of the film. Dutcher's films always look like they must have cost a great deal more then they did.
If you get the chance, see it in a theatre.
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