Reviewed by: Jon Wymer, pastor
“The Company Man,” “The Television,” “Rings”
TV’s “Summerland,” TV’s “House M.D.,” TV’s “ER,” “The Crow: Salvation”
“Epic Movie,” “You Are Here,” “Date Movie”
TV’s “Heroes,” TV’s “Saving Grace,” “Within”
TV’s “The Young and the Restless,” Dumb and Dumber, “Eve’s Bayou”
“Slow Burn,” “Runaway Jury”
|Producer:||Indelible Creative Group, LLC. and Awaken Films (Awaken International, Inc.)|
“Crave” is by no means a typical Christian film. Released on DVD in March, 2008, the disc contains three short stories designed to play on humanity’s basic needs: a sense of destiny, a desire for meaning, and a passion for intimacy. The stories are based on the book Soul Cravings, by Erwin Raphael McManus. Each segment of the film is sandwiched with segments by McManus himself, drawing out the truths and ideas evoked in the stories themselves.
“Midnight Clear,” a vignette on destiny, begins with a man running in the rain. It soon becomes clear this is a convict who broke out of prison. The drama unfolds as the convict Michael (Guy Torry) disturbs Angela Pressmore (Victoria Rowell) and her family enjoying a quiet evening at home. Conversation around the dinner table focuses on the tension between the escaped convict and a “perfect” family, yet Michael seems to develop a special relationship with the family. The story deals with themes of rejection and reconciliation, as Ben Pressmore (Marlon Young) asks Michael, “What are you gonna do? Run again?” “No, not this time,” Michael says.
“Pop Star” is a short story about intimacy and perspective. A self-absorbed wannabe pop star Andy (Adam Campbell) is sent to the hospital with burned hairs and meets a young girl (Adair Tishler) there. Shana is an eight year old girl who opens Andy’s eyes, pointing out he is not truly famous in his own right. Andy is so self-centered he barely even notices Shana and her situation. But notice he does, and what he finds changes his perspective.
“Nameless Moment” is the story of Gavin (Dusty Sorg) and Kaleen (Kylee Cochran). Gavin is an anti-social physics student who fantasizes about Kaleen during class. He has given up on God, and struggles just to get by. One night while showering at school, Gavin has a chance encounter with Kaleen. Gavin and Kaleen’s story touches on hope and meaning.
I recommend this film as a teaching tool, particularly as an icebreaker with those completely foreign or new to Christianity. You will have to make the connections with Scripture, because the stories themselves don’t do this. Few Christian films reflect the quality of writing, acting, and soundtrack featured on this DVD. The stories are well designed, and leave enough details open to provide excellent follow up conversations.
Violence: None / Profanity: None / Sex/Nudity: Minor
Erwin Raphael McManus was named one of the 50 Most Influential Christians in America by Church Report Magazine in January 2006/2007. He is a Gold Medallion Award finalist and is the author of An Unstoppable Force, Chasing Daylight, Uprising: A Revolution of the Soul, The Barbarian Way and Stand Against the Wind. McManus serves as the lead pastor and Cultural Architect of Mosaic in Los Angeles, which was called one of the 50 most influential churches in America in 2007 and is known around the world for its spiritual creativity and cosmopolitan diversity.
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.