In this modern day retelling of the timeless Prodigal Son Parable, young Jacob is tired of living on the family farm, submitting to the rules of his Father, Mr. Abraham. One day he demands an early inheritance from his father, who shocks his young son by agreeing to give it to him. So, he heads to the big city doing things his way without restraint, and for a while he does well-surprisingly well. He takes huge business risks and converts his small fortune into a big fortune, despite his extremely flamboyant lifestyle that attracts the wrong women, including seductive Laura, whose rich boyfriend Frank is often dangerously nearby. Jake had it all: money, ladies, prestige-but then-he loses it all and just when he things he's hit bottom the bottom drops some more- until he is eating out of dumpsters and eventually ends up living in a literal pig pen. Coming to his senses he heads home, determined to work in an entry level position for his dad, who surprises him once again by running to ... Written by
I give the makers credit for unapologetically retelling a predictable story, but not preaching in the process. It could be for someone of any religion. Jesus is never even mentioned. The people who give him advice do it modestly.
However, just for the record, there is nothing wrong with living in a big city, being an investor, or enjoying material possessions. But it does matter what products and projects you support. In this case he financed a video game that may deaden the senses of our youth, and a movie that proclaims the world a dark place without a solution.
He did earn his inheritance to a degree, since he had been working on the farm for many years and lent his savvy to the operation. Manual labor is not for everyone. This movie tried to portray it as superior to business deals, but both are important.
The lack of identification of the setting made sense, since they wanted the story to stand for itself, and since the small budget could not take it to L.A. If you read about the film, you see that it was Raleigh, N.C. and the sweet coffee girl is from the area in real life. It wasn't meant to be a story about L.A. or any particular city, but rather the lifestyle of any generic town.
Repentance is universally possible and not unique to Christianity. We never hear that he accepts Jesus upon his return. A Jew or Unitarian can repent too.
The three leads were excellent. The main character had charisma and gravitas, the party girl played worn out but savvy well, and the Barista girl showed real girl-next-door emotion.
Nice picture. It's not exciting, but you may enjoy the setting and the basic message as portrayed by attractive leads and simple dialog.
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