I don't change people.
This was certainly not what I expected. having seen But I'm a
Cheerleader, I thought it might me another film about some misguided
bigots that think they can change a person's sexual orientation. It was
much better than that.
Judith Light was fantastic in a subtle and deep performance as the head
of a house that gives those with addiction issues, and who also happen
to be gay, a chance to find themselves. Yes, it is done from a
Christian perspective, but it really seems to be Christian, and not the
counter-programming or brainwashing we usually see.
Mark (Chad Allen) has issues with drug and alcohol addiction and was
sent to Genesis House after a suicide attempt.
Gayle (Light) and her husband Ted (Stephen Lang) work to keep the wolf
from the door as they help their residents find Jesus and themselves.
There always seems to be something going on in their marriage. It
really get heated as Scott (Robert Gant) and Mark become closer.
We never really find out why Ted and Gayle's marriage is so strained.
maybe it is because he is coming from an alcohol addiction background
and is more accepting, while she is trying to make amends for driving
away her son without really understanding that love exists in all
forms, straight or gay, and that acceptance of others is the only truly
Christian way of living.
Judge ye not...
There were some excellent performances in Robert Cary's film, along
with beautiful New Mexico scenery and a great soundtrack..
First-rank acting, writing and directing in this gem
I bought this film solely on the promise of Chad Allen's acting skills.
I am an ex-Christian who, while never having done the whole "ex-gay"
scene in my church years, have held nothing but contempt for the
movement and the promises it makes.
So it was doubly remarkable for me to see not only the excellence of
this film, but the subtle, thoughtful and beautifully written story as
well. Hats off to both writers (Craig Chester, Alan Hines) as well as
the screenplay work by Robert Desiderio. The directing, filming and
acting were outstanding. The story is a beautiful discussion of both
the goodness and healing qualities of the Christian faith, while also
exploring the brittle, rigid quality that faith by rules brings to the
table. It does perhaps the best job I've ever seen of painting the
complexity of homosexuality and Christianity, as well as the intricate
dance that has developed between the two.
I am in particular struck by the roles played by the two males leads
(Chad Allen and Robert Gant) and the nuanced, powerful performance by
Judith Light. The transitions Allen makes from addict/bad boy to
hopeful believer to the beginnings of a healthy gay relationship are
brilliant. Robert Gant does exceptional work in the wrestling with the
need to please a father he'll never win approval from, and in the
dialogues where he confronts (in the person of Judith Light) the issues
around Christianity, homosexuality and what it means to be a whole
person. And Judith Light is a character I believe only a Christian or
ex-Christian can deeply appreciate - believer, teacher, mother in
denial for the way she feels she failed her son, defender, injured
soul. I've met her echo again and again in my long walk through
Christianity. Exceptional story-telling.
Thank you Robert Cary. Thank you actors and writers. Thanks for a
kickin' piece of film..