5.6/10
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11 user 17 critic

Hidden Secrets (2006)

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A young man finds himself torn between his current girlfriend and an old flame at a funeral of friend where lifestyles and attitudes clash over a long weekend in this faith-based dramedy.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Gary Zimmerman
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Jeremy Evans
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Rachel Wilson (as Stacy Keanan)
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Michael Stover
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Sherry Hayden
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Norman Wexler
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Harold Mirfin
Autumn Paul ...
Rhonda Mirfin
Rachael Lampa ...
Sean Sedgwick ...
Anthony DeMeo
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Joey
Jason Borck ...
Christopher Hayden
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Waitress
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Big Fan
Jason Roy ...
Building 429 Member #1
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Storyline

A young man finds himself torn between his current girlfriend and an old flame at a funeral of friend where lifestyles and attitudes clash over a long weekend in this faith-based dramedy.

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Comedy | Drama

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Release Date:

6 October 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Simple Twist of Faith  »

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Did You Know?

Quotes

Gary Zimmerman: Rhonda, be honest, do you think Jesus will like this tie?
Rhonda Mirfin: I don't think the Lord notices what people are wearing.
Gary Zimmerman: Well good. Then I'll go naked.
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Soundtracks

When I Fall
Written by Natalie Hemby, Daniel Tashien, Ty Smith and Rachael Lampa
Performed by Rachael Lampa
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User Reviews

 
Big Chill + Christ = Winner
5 May 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Correctly identified as a Christian version of The Big Chill, Hidden Secrets tells of high school friends who get back together in their early 30s after the death of one of their group. This is not a homemade movie, in which the local pastor directed and the youth minister and his wife starred. The cast includes Bo Duke (John Schneider) and Reginald Vel Johnson of Family Matters. The acting, production values and music are professional throughout. It does indeed manage to capture much of The Big Chill's sense of poignancy balanced with sentimentality and still add a Christian message or two. My biggest problem in the ensemble production was telling people apart. Much is made over the fact that Sherry and Rachel look alike. They do, especially when both have their hair up. It usually takes a smile to tell young Jennifer Anniston look-like Sherry (Tracy Melchior) from Rachel (Staci Keanan). The problem is, the guys are also almost indistinguishable on first viewing. Schneider and David A.R. White are virtual doubles and Corin Nemec and Gregg Binkley even bear enough resemblance to each other to cause confusion on first viewing. It took me three viewings to feel like I was 100% sure who was who at all times.

The story sees members of a high school band and a couple of other friends returning to their home town to bury a central figure in their group. Chris, the recently departed friend, was apparently the glue that held the friends together and had helped most of the others through personal struggles. Now his death helps them all come together and deal with some important issues once again.

The group stays with Sherry, Chris' sister, who is getting ready to open a bed-and-breakfast. She had also been virtually engaged to Jeremy (White) until a dark secret caused her to break it off 10 years before. Many of them have been drifting for years: Jeremy and Sherry since the breakup, Anthony since a knee injury ended his football dreams and Herald, whose success as a Christian author has been severely tempered by his marriage to obnoxious Rhonda. Autumn Paul as Rhonda adds much spice to the film, although I think she is a bit of a cardboard villain. Many of her sanctimonious actions I have witnessed first-hand (usually from new believers). She goes so far as to make her actions questionable, however. I can believe her saying "I wonder how many of these people would go to Hell if they died today" with a relish that makes it obvious she enjoys the thought of them getting their just deserts. We even find ourselves on Gary's side when he refutes her heavy-handed attempt to witness to him through an Internet script. Sadly, most of us have known non-believers whose company we vastly preferred to the brother or sister who tried to witness to them. What I cannot believe is any Christian, no matter how pompous, NOT wanting sinners to come to their church. I think any Christian I've ever known would be thrilled to have Asama bin Laden (after going through a medal detector, perhaps) in a pew, hearing one's pastor preach the Word, just on the CHANCE the Lord might snag him. To me, Rhonda's character veered off into cardboard J.R. Ewing/Snidely Whiplash villainy at this point.

This seems to be the main message: A bitter, judgmental Christian is going to drive more away from Christ than he/she will ever lead to Him. The other message is that Christ's blood is sufficient to cover all sins and that it is not too late to follow His will. Both points are well presented within a framework that is an enjoyable, engrossing movie that does indeed capture much of the warmth and charm of The Big Chill.


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