Reviews written by registered user
sdebeaubien

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27 reviews in total 
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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Decent Acting..., 17 June 2016
4/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

My wife and I were very impressed at the beginning of this movie, and through the middle. We grew a bit uncomfortable when the young girl finds out the fellow in the wheelchair has decided to kill himself (through assisted suicide). At the end of the movie we both felt very let down. Not only did she not succeed in changing his mind, she actually becomes happy about it as if life is only lived for moments when you can really experience something.

Sad, sad, commentary on life, and very narrow minded. First, I know a couple people who have been injured and confined to wheelchair, quadriplegic or otherwise. They took the time to adjust, and one has been that way for near 40 years and has a wonderful life. He did not quit or give up on life, just because his life before the accident was so "Tremendous" or whatever it was the wimpy dude said in this movie.

If you want to make a movie about someone with redemption or about overcoming adversity, then you had best not have the person quit at the end, like a whiny cry-baby and try to convince everyone out there that "The world is better off without me because I hate my life now, but loved it before..." That's a cop out, totally and completely. It's not an ad for assisted suicide, it's just a dramatic interpretation of a dude who gave up, and let everyone down.

We gave it 8/10 for acting. But, the overall movie is a 2 since the premise and the interpretation are so wrong. So, it gets a total score of 4/10 compromise from us.

Risen (2016)
5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Great Point Of View, 5 March 2016
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

We liked the movie tremendously. It didn't move nearly as quickly in the middle of the movie as it did at the beginning and the end. But we thought it was quite good, better than the typical comic book movie (action flicks) Hollywood puts out these days. We gave it 8/10. Joseph Fiennes does a very credible job of acting, and portraying the lead character, a Roman Tribune named Clavius who is perplexed by the events surrounding the resurrection.

Great point of view, very original, we gave them top marks for that! The middle part is essential to the story line, but is limited by the somewhat non-action oriented nature as described above. Not that movies have to have lots of action to be interesting, we are spoiled these days since that is what we feed on mostly from Hollywood. But the good old movies where they had minimal special effects and relied upon acting, with witty dialog and snappy come backs were better IMO than the stuff they "Act" in front of green screens these days.

These types of movies, with minimal special effects (Risen being one) rely more on set decoration and acting skills. This film deserves a lot of credit for that. It was a wonderful way to see parts of the Bible come to life, and to feel "Immersed" in those events.

19 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
Geriatric Attempt At Reboot, 12 January 2016
6/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

You know, what bothered me the most when I saw this movie was I just kept feeling that "Deja vu" like I'd seen all this before. I had! In 1977 with Episode IV! It's simply a reboot, told with a few new characters, and a few ... geriatric ones, who probably shouldn't have been in it at all, except perhaps in cameo roles or some such.

I was very disappointed in JJ Abrams efforts, given that he did such a wonderful job on the Star Trek reboot. Anyhow, the plot is nearly identical to Ep. IV, and the plot holes are even larger! The bad guy was so poor quality as to be cartoonish. In fact, I walked out initially giving the movie a 7/10 for being a decent Comic Book adaptation, but that's all. I went back later and downgraded it for being so doggoned disappointing.

Technically, the movie is pretty good, with good action scenes, and decent aerobatics with the various spacecraft involved whether they're flying in space or in atmosphere. But there were just too many "Impossible" things to reconcile for me, like how does a garbage man have intimate knowledge of a station that complex, and how does his "Captain" have intimate knowledge of the shield around the station, and how come if he/she is actually able to turn it off, nobody else can't simply turn it back on?

Like I said, too many plot holes to be anything but a Comic Book, and not enough on the decent acting side to merit any real comment. The whole movie is spent looking for Luke, then at the end it's like we've achieved some state of nirvana in that we've actually found him! We found him! Visually stunning, that final landscape lacks depth because it's like some proverbial vision quest that ends in a speechless moment of awe and inspiration, but the movie as a whole lacks both.

Sorry guys. I hate to say this movie was a HUGE disappointment, but it was (disappointing).

21 out of 48 people found the following review useful:
Very Powerful, 28 April 2014
10/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

My wife and I saw this movie Friday night and we were very encouraged by it. My best advice is to pay no attention whatsoever to any of the negative reviewers on this movie.

First, the acting was solid. Second, the dialog is crisp, and clear. The intent and the message come through solid. I've seen many reviewers claim that this entire thing is a "Setup." Believe me, I've seen many events like this happen in real life, and know that God indeed does move exactly the way the film describes. In fact, I could tell you stories that would make your hair stand up. But I won't, since this review is about this movie.

Suffice it to say, it is all completely within the realm of possibility in God's economy as we like to say in Christian circles. I'm ashamed of all those on here claiming to be Christians, even some claiming to be Pastors who negatively reviewed this movie. It's extremely well scripted, well thought out and well executed in my opinion.

We all of us know that College campuses across America have become havens for liberal thought, taking their god-less message to those who are most vulnerable, the young and impressionable. That type of thinking has invaded our primary and secondary schools as well, to the point where the liberals think they have won the victory over the hearts and minds of our children.

What do we reap as a benefit of all that you might ask? Teen drug and alcohol use that is out of control. Teen pregnancies that have crept upwards in both numbers and percentages for many years, only to be knocked down in the past couple years by "Morning after" pills that kill the baby in the girl's womb before it ever gets a chance to start growing. We have teen suicide rates that are among the highest in the world. And we have an entire generation of young people enslaved by both the entitlement mentality as well as the "I must be entertained" philosophy. These kids growing up haven't a clue what life is really all about, and they sure aren't encouraged by a liberal philosophy that claims we came from nothing and return to nothing when we die.

Christianity defends itself, as this movie so aptly points out. Those who won't listen or can't hear the truth of Christ's message, the Gospel (good news), are blinded by their own desires and lusts and they choose to try to poke holes in it rather than investigate it and find out for themselves whether or not the claims of the Bible are true.

I grew up in the liberal school system. In Los Angeles, in the 1960's. I was a drug user and an alcoholic. I have lived the hedonistic pleasure-centered life-style where I myself was god, and the only choices in life were how best to fill my needs on any particular day. I am here to tell you that life is a lie. The biggest lie in history is that you can live for yourself and not care anything about anyone else! That life is meaningless, and shallow and will lead only to the one place that all the liberals don't want you to hear about: Hell.

So, to all those who scoff and doubt, I can only repeat the title of this movie, that says it all: "God's Not Dead!"

Noah (2014)
3 out of 15 people found the following review useful:
Earthshaking, 29 March 2014
7/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Well, I tell you, it's Earthquake season here in CA. Last night, Cheryl and I went to see Noah and we were startled when about 1/2 way through the movie the building started to shake. At first, you want to think that the movie next door is having a particularly violent scene or maybe some stuff is blowing up and the building is shaking a bit. But then, it kind of started rolling and moving back and forth (as CA buildings are designed to do in these quakes). Lots of folks were exclaiming "I'm getting scared!" Nobody freaked out, thankfully, nobody bolted for the exits. But some did leave afterwards, in the middle of the movie.

They missed the end of Noah. Which really wasn't much better than the beginning I suppose. It was about a 7/10 on my scale. Decent, but nothing outstanding. About the level of the typical animated movie, a comic book version of something ripped off from the Bible. It was a lot less biblical than the last movie we saw (Son of God). I was surprised by the lack of Biblical structure, and then at the end, they throw in this one obscure event involving Noah getting drunk, and I just had to almost laugh.

It's entertaining, that's about all. They used evil as a key element, and original sin was prominent. But there was just too much fantastic outside stuff to even believe. The script line strays far from the Bible in some very key areas, leading me to believe the script writers may have glanced at the Bible maybe once or twice. Not that it's that familiar to many people, but there was just so much weirdness I found myself just sitting there saying "Is the Bible really that hard to believe or understand that they had to make up so much of the rest of this?"

The Earthquake in the middle made it really memorable. Kudos to God for bringing off a total mind-blowing experience in the middle of a movie about His book!

Son of God (2014)
63 out of 110 people found the following review useful:
Good Movie Decent Acting Good Effort to Tell the Story, 2 March 2014
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Since so many so-called "Christians" are reviewing this movie and ripping it to shreds, I thought I should write a review to give a more balanced opinion. There will be spoilers in my review, so let me just start by saying that it was entertaining and it had its moments. If you are the kind of Christian who thinks that "Only the King James Version" of the Bible is correct, or anybody else who doggedly clings to their own "Traditions" then do not go see it, this movie is not for you.

The movie is, however, for the masses of people who have never heard of Jesus, or who have only heard about Jesus, but they've never read the Bible. About half the material in the movie comes from quotes from the Bible, sometimes juxtaposed around so they are not correct in a strict temporal sense (as most of us would put things in some timeline sense anyway) but it's alright, I won't fault the movie makers for that. The point is they put all that material in there and tried to get quotes accurate, whether they be from King James, or other translations is somewhat beside the point. Some are a bit liberal, and there a few minor issues with other claims made in the movie.

What else they threw in, generally, is the historical struggle between the Jews of Judea with the Romans at the time of the historical Jesus. My opinion is they did a credible job of adding drama and historical fiction (extrapolated dialog) between the Pharisees and the Sanhedrin (the Jewish ruling Council) and the Romans, as well as the betrayal of Jesus by Judas Iscariot. They also threw in another shady character which at least adds another dimension to the story, again based on a historical person named Barabbas.

While the movie was not "Epic" in scope or proportion, and certainly not in cinematography, I gave it a relatively high score (8/10) for its effective acting and tender moments. If you are a Christian, you better ask yourself: "Could I act and play Jesus?" Any Christian certainly had better answer "No!" first, and then say, well I could try. And I'm here to tell you that the fellow in the movie did a credible job. The book of Isaiah tells us that "We esteemed him not" and the meaning is that Jesus had nothing to distinguish Him as God. We could look at Him and see a perfectly ordinary person. It's only once you have met Him and gotten to know who He is that you worship Him.

So, in that sense, I believe this movie will introduce a lot of folks to the real Jesus, the Jesus of the Bible. I believe it will make them thirsty for more, which will make them want to read the Bible and get to know Him for who He really is. He is not dead, He is alive, and any person on this earth today can come to know Him.

15 out of 19 people found the following review useful:
Best Documentary I've Ever Seen, 14 December 2013
10/10

I was totally blown away. No excessive writeup is needed. It's powerful, authentic and raw. It's the best documentary I've seen because you just feel like you are right there with them. Just see it.

I must write more because IMDb won't accept my review without 10 lines of review, so you can ignore this part if you want. I wont' put any spoilers in either so you can be blown away by this movie like I was.

Films like this go to the theater and are ignored by the ordinary film goers, but they should not be. We should all see movies like this because it brings hope to our spirits. In this hopeless world, I cannot think of a better way to bring hope than to give your life to HIV orphans in a far off place.

Again I urge all of you - just see this movie.

10 out of 29 people found the following review useful:
Faith and the Human Condition, 17 October 2013
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

My wife and I went to see this on a very difficult day. We had found out just that day that her niece had passed away. Our grief was very palpable as we watched this movie, and though we had many tears and wept along with the various parts of the movie that dealt with death and dying, we did hear the message that Kirk was laying out for the audience.

The "Journey" starts at the beginning, because that's simply what all who become Christians come to understand at some point in their walk with the Lord: That the beginning of the Bible, God's letter to us, lays out the groundwork for everything else that comes after it. The Book of Genesis is indeed a book about beginnings, and has as much relevance today as it did 3500 years ago when it was first written down.

This is the "Spoiler" part for those of you who have not seen the movie. If you're a Christian then you'll forgive me for going into it and "Giving away" the ending. But the answer to why bad things happen to good people, or the reason why if God is good, why bad stuff happens is simply the fact that there is sin in this world. There was originally no sin, and humans, specifically Adam and Eve lived in perfect communion with God. It was evil that crept in, and tempted Eve to eat from the forbidden fruit, after which all of creation was messed up and subject to the ravages of sin and death ever since.

What the non-Christian can never understand is why God would write down this silly sounding story about it if he didn't intend to do something about it. And that, again, is entirely the point. God _did_ something about the failure, and ultimately He considered it His failure so He sent His Son Jesus to die on the cross at Calvary to take the penalty for all our sin - on Himself - so that we could be restored to perfect relationship with Him. We won't be perfect of course until after we die and live eternally with Him. But Hallelujah - the message of the gospel does explain why bad things happen, as well as provides the answer to all that bad stuff that we can have now, here, today.

That is not a complete gospel message, and the film does not claim to make anything like a gospel presentation, nor does it. If you wish to hear the full gospel, may I suggest you head on down and talk with a Bible believing Pastor at any Evangelical church and find out for yourself if this amazing story could be true.

I liked the movie very much, and I give Kirk Cameron a lot of credit for the work he did on this movie. It is not perfect by any means, but it is far better than average in terms of good Christian messages in any movies out there. The subject matter is difficult - even for Christians - to deal with. Most folks would rather pretend sin didn't exist, and that it's not really a problem. Well, for those of us in the U.S. it may not be, we have so much wealth and prosperity already. It's difficult for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God Jesus told us.

The reason why is because the wealthy have no need of a "Savior" they already have all they need. Most of those out there who thumb their noses at God and desire to live their own life-style pretending that God doesn't exist are essentially telling everyone they have no use for God either, they're happy to self-medicate and keep pretending that judgement isn't coming. I hope that works well for those of you out there living in your dreams.

I could go on, but I will leave you with some curiosity so you can explore these ideas on your own.

7 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
Fabulous! Heartbreaking, healing., 16 April 2012
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It's very sad that when a group decides to take on the number one most divisive issue in our culture, that they get ripped by some reviewers for no reason at all. The acting: superb. The story line, based on true events. The drama: Heart-touching, inspiring, more emotional than most of us males feel comfortable with, but with a touch of the "Kendrick brothers whimsy" to make us smile on occasion, and even laugh out loud.

Abortion - there is no way around it, you are either for it or against it. There is no middle ground on this issue. Many claim to be neutral, but there is no such thing when it comes to this issue, either you believe the lie and you call it "Choice" or "Convenience" or you believe the Bible, and you call it murder. Very clear, no room for maneuver on that one.

This movie puts it in your face, it's undeniable in fact, that the movie presents a subject so clearly that those who are uncomfortable with it will go write a negative review simply because otherwise their whole life would be a lie, based on a false belief that condemns them, makes their hearts sick, and worse, would make them murderers.

I am a murderer. I had a girlfriend who had an abortion, I drove her to the clinic. I paid for the abortion. The movie hit me in the heart too, but I was able to take away the healing and the cleansing touch offered by Jesus Christ. His blood paid for my sin. The movie for me was therefore very real. And not just because of the subject matter. You can tell from the actors that they are not acting much of the time, it was real for them too. At the end, the woman who plays Hannah's birth mother tells about her abortion, and how the healing happened right there - on film!

Make no mistake, this film is real, and the acting is for the most part, not acting. You will be either shaken to the core and made to feel more uncomfortable than you've ever been by any movie, or you will walk away with a renewed love for our Savior Jesus Christ and His unending love for us. This movie also gives us a new tool in the fight against the lie of "Choice." How many millions have been sacrificed on the altar of choice? On the altar of convenience?

If you're seeking solace from the guilt of an abortion, even many years ago, then go to this movie. It will break your heart, but then you will come away feeling the healing and the love that are possible in no other way than from the power of Jesus Christ.

Red Tails (2012)
7 out of 16 people found the following review useful:
Great Human Drama, 30 January 2012
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

My wife and I both rated this movie a solid 8. While it may not be the most exciting movie in the world, it had its moments, both of action and great human drama. The acting was not particularly noteworthy either, in the sense that nobody's role stood out in our minds more than anyone else's. I think that the team decided to do it that way, figuring the story that needed telling was too important to get "right" and avoid having anybody be a glory hog on the screen.

The Red Tails themselves will tell you (probably based on what I've read about them) that they were not in it for glory either, rather, this story tells it basically as it happened: They fought to save lives of their fellow flyers, in this case, bomber pilots and crews. They had a job to do, and they did it to the best of their ability while still helping to shoot down enemy pilots and inflict as much damage as possible to the Luftwaffe. But, they followed orders, for the most part.

In all units in WWII there were breaches of military command and discipline, sometimes warranted by circumstances, and sometimes not. My "feeling" about this movie was that in spite of the fact they used some Hollywood license with the story-telling, it still painted a pretty accurate picture of how things were for the African American pilots of the Red Tail (332nd Fighter Group or Tuskegee Airmen) outfit.

I've seen numerous other depictions on screen of their struggle to gain acceptance in the "All white" army of pre-WWII. You'd have thought that after the episode in the Civil War at the battle of Charleston engaged by the first all African American Infantry Regiment (the 54th Maine) would have proved that black soldiers were just as brave (if not braver) than their white fellow soldiers. Sad, but it was not to be the case. In fact, the army did not fully integrate until Korea (in effect). I saw an interview on Huckabee last night with Cuba Gooding Jr. and I just kept thinking that if we were over this racial nonsense then we wouldn't even be having to talk about it anymore.

We still have a long ways to go as a people. I am proud of my African American brothers who fought and died for our country in WWII in the skies over Europe. They saved many bomber crews to come home to their families and loved ones after the war, and the debt of gratitude can never be fully repaid.


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