A documentary following a Pentecostal minister who receives a vision from God to create an epic science fiction movie based on the biblical story of Joseph, sending him and his followers on a journey of extreme faith.

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Richard Gazowsky ...
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Pietro Manigrasso ...
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Ten years ago, a Pentecostal pastor from San Francisco was praying on a mountain top when he received a vision from God to spread the Gospel through filmmaking. Using donations from his congregation, he slowly transformed his church into a fully functioning movie studio, and the production company Christian WYSIWYG Filmworks was born. After experimenting on a number of small projects, Pastor Richard Gazowsky announced that he and his WYSIWYG crew were going to make a film entitled, GRAVITY: THE SHADOW OF JOSEPH, a biblical science fiction movie that would redefine the Hollywood epic. AUDIENCE OF ONE is a documentary that chronicles the making of GRAVITY. This verite style film goes inside a Pentecostal church, where the charismatic Gazowsky leads his loyal cast and crew on an incredible journey that tests the limits of faith. From pre-production at their church, to shooting principal photography in Italy, to leasing an enormous studio on an island in the San Francisco Bay, AUDIENCE OF... Written by Anonymous

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9 March 2007 (USA)  »

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Fascinating and Disturbing film about Faith-based film-making
16 March 2007 | by (Austin, TX, United States) – See all my reviews

This film screened at the SXSW film festival in Austin, TX where it was very well-received by audiences and received a Special Jury Award. Audience of One may be the first "Making Of" film for an unmade film.

The film captured the incredibly bizarre story Reverend Richard Gazowsky's San Francisco-based Pentecostal Church and their efforts to create a film studio and film a great Christian epic film that would be a combination of "Star Wars" and the "Ten Commandments." Audience of One brilliantly captures the inevitable train wreck that ensues as they assemble a cast and crew of mostly incompetent amateurs and attempt to create a great film. Their mistakes are laughable and absurd to any film professional.

Despite persistence and dedication, they spend hundreds of thousands of dollars and are never able to come anywhere close to creating a real film. Audience of One is really a study of the meaning of fundamentalist faith and asks us where we should draw the line between reason/rationality and faith in God. Rational Modernists could view their actions as insane and irrational and wonder whether these people would actually "drink the Kool-Aid" if asked. The film is also a study of the power of charismatic leadership to make people act in ways that seem irrational to outsiders. Still, while their pursuit may seem wasteful and a little foolish it is ultimately fairly harmless compared to, for example, the Rev. Fred Phelps "God Hates Fags" ministry as portrayed in the brilliant documentary "Fall from Grace" (which also screened this year at SXSW).

Audience of One is a truly enjoyable film to watch. It is both humorous and sad at the same time. While Audience of One serves as a warning about the dangers of fundamentalism, it should also offer secular viewers people a useful window into the power of religious faith to inspire believers. Perhaps the real lesson is that faith is a powerful tool and if harnessed for the right means can actually inspire believers in many ways. Here the task that people are inspired to pursue is one that is beyond their means, but that should be contrasted with the vast amount of good deeds that is accomplished by religious believers on a daily basis. I hope that people don't take from this film only the message that faith is dangerous and destructive, but rather the message that faith needs to be balanced with rationality.


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Message Boards

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Conman or naive guy in denial? dinkamrat
Paint it any way you want, but this film is about Major Self Delusion... deckard-53
the ending track vortex_lip
The Ending (whoa!) lurm
Pastor Richard has not given up hope! misterajc
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