Left Behind: Movie Review
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The new remake of Left Behind, starring Nicolas Cage and Lea Thompson, had all the promise of being a spiritual thriller that brings Christian and mainstream audiences together in movie theaters this weekend.
Based on the best-selling book by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins, Left Behind tells a fictional story of what could happen when God calls all believers to Heaven during a time referred to as the Rapture. What filmmakers on this movie have created in this new release is, unfortunately, more disastrous than it is rapturous.
THE MOVIE IN A MINUTE
In the blink of eye, bodies vanish. Piles of clothes lay where passengers on pilot Rayford Steele’s flight to London once sat. Already halfway across the Atlantic Ocean, Steele and his flight crew struggle to keep the other passengers calm after all of the children and some of the adults suddenly disappear. On the ground, Rayford’s daughter Chloe frantically searches for answers as the world around her begins to burn.
THE GOOD AND BAD IN LEFT BEHIND
First, the good in Left Behind is found in its visuals, specifically during the flight scenes when the airline jet meets some perilous problems. Having Cage in the midst of the fray is another thing Left Behind has going for it. Presenting this version of the “last days” to audiences across the nation is a definite positive.
From a critic’s perspective, Left Behind also has its problems. The screenplay is somewhat clunky, and, at times, the music is disengaging. The numerous storylines don’t weave well together in this rendering of LaHaye and Jenkins’ story. With all of the explosions and crying, we should feel intensely moved watching these characters and their worlds fall apart. That kind of impact may not hit us all.
Scripture speaks of a time when Jesus Christ will return and anyone who believes in Him will go to Heaven. The specifics aren’t known (see ). Controversy surrounds this extremely important topic, even amongst church circles. Some argue that the theology implied in this version of events is not biblically accurate. Even with that understanding in mind, this film does prompts you to consider the “last days”, which is biblical. The disappointment, from a Christian moviegoer’s perspective, is that the film doesn’t fully engage, making this future encounter more provoking. It seems like the big points were glossed over and more focus was put on explosive action.
Rated PG-13 for scenes of mayhem, destruction and disturbing images, Left Behind isn’t appropriate for young audiences.
IN THE END
This new take on Left Behind is better than the original. However, you may feel a little disappointed, when you realize how much more this remake could haven been.
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