The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2000)
A documentary look, mostly through the eyes of Tammy Faye Bakker Messner, at her rise and fall as a popular televangelist with husband Jim Bakker. Traces their rise: her teen marriage to Jim; their children's TV show (she was a puppeteer and singer), success founding the 700 Club, co-founding the Trinity Broadcast Network, and starting PTL Network; her nondenominational version of Christianity reaching out to all; and, their building of Heritage USA, a theme park. Things fall apart as money woes mount for Heritage and for Jim, as Tammy takes pills, and as Jerry Falwell takes PTL. Jim goes to prison; she remarries, finds herself alone again, yet remains unsinkable.
- This was very fair and balanced portrayal of Tammy Faye and Jim Baker. They come across as decent but misguided people, who made some terrible mistakes in life. As their own Holy Jesus would say- "Let those amongst us without sin, cast the first stone." In retrospect, Jim and Tammy seem more worthy of respect than their con-man contemporaries from the 1970s/1980s and also the current crop of born-again crazies. They pulled off some outrageous stuff, and were over the edge in many respects, but I don't believe they actually willfully tried to swindle people and such. This documentary also provided some insight into how they themselves were conned, duped, burned, and swindled, by such "honest and respectable" Christians as Pat Robertson, Paul Crouch, and His Holiness, Jerry Falwell.