Today’s Prayer Focus

The Man Who Came Back

MPA Rating: R for violence and sexual content.

Reviewed by: Michael Karounos

Moral Rating: Extremely Offensive
Moviemaking Quality:
Primary Audience: Adults
Genre: Western, Action
Length: 1 hr. 52 min.
Year of Release: 2008
USA Release: Direct to DVD
DVD release: December 9, 2008
Copyright, Lionsgate
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Lionsgate

Every time you buy a movie ticket or rent a video you are casting a vote telling Hollywood “That’s what I want.” Why does Hollywood continue to promote immoral programming? Are YOU part of the problem?

How does viewing violence in movies affect the family? Answer


Murder in the Bible

Rape victims stories




Does the Bible condone slavery? Answer

What are the consequences of racial prejudice and false beliefs about the origin of races? Answer

Racism, Ethnicity Issues and Christianity
Get biblical answers to racial hot-topics. Where did the races come from? How did skin color come about? Why is it important to have a biblical foundation for such issues?
Featuring Sean Young
Billy Zane
Carol Alt
Armand Assante, George Kennedy, James Patrick Stuart, Eric Braeden, Jennifer O'Dell, Peter Jason, Ken Norton, Edwin Neal, Leonard L. Thomas, Stefanos Miltsakakis, Tajh Bellow, Russell Reynolds, Richard Jackson, Heather Fife, Amy Morris, Jackson Burns, Katina Latrell, Brady Hender, J.D. Hawkins, Patience Watt, Gianna Redeemer, Teddy Valdes, Brandie Briley, Kate Clarke, Werner Richmond, Alvin Bellow, Jon-Michael Foshee, Nicholas Wayne Williams, Al Hayter, Terry Mann, Brenda Mireles, Leigh M. Harris, Fredric L. Norris, Belinda Simmons, Dominique Wilson, Roland Rottweiler, John Rouse, Jimmy Phillips, Buddy Howard, C. Anthony Jackson, Barrett Kyle Blackmon, Elie Taylor, Jerry Orton, Kathleen Rottweiler, Kate Clark, Sheila Eatmon, Cynthia Elaine Shaw, Rickey Atkins Jr., Johnny Beall
Director Glen Pitre — “The Scoundrel's Wife,” “Belizaire the Cajun”
Producer The Company Pictures, Gudegast Braeden Productions, Scott Hamilton Public Relations, Stephen Bowen Productions, Michelle Benoit, Stephen Bowen, Eric Braeden, Gudegast Braeden, Sam Cable, John Castellanos, Ra-Ana Gilani, Yankie Grant, Duke Meek, Chuck Walker
Distributor: Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. Trademark logo.
(Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.)

“Revenge was his only answer.”

I hasten to write this review to prevent anyone from renting this movie. Under the guise of an “anti-slavery” story, “The Man Who Came Back” portrays Southern whites, with the exception of a “Confederate war hero,” as vile, violent, and, of course, as evil Christians who quote the Bible, glowingly reference the Crusades, and abuse freed blacks with orgiastic delight.

The putative basis for the movie is the Thibodaux Massacre in 1887, but one only learns that in the closing credits. Rather, the idea of that historical event provides the excuse for the mayhem which writer Chuck Walker and director and co-writer Glen Pitre unleash as revenge on a white community. The sheer spitefulness of the movie exceeds reason. It projects on Southerners a virulent hatred that calls into question the motive of the film. Similar to the “Saw” films and “The Hills Have Eyes,” the movie does not attempt to tell a story; it is a visual act of hatred which uses the plot device of revenge in order to justify its disgusting images of rape, murder, and torture.

The movie runs through a catalog of evil archetypes in the first third of the movie. A series of scenes depicts a preacher, a judge, the sheriff, a carpet bagger, prison guards, landowners, and business men as white devils. Indeed, much like the trailer for the disgusting “Left for Dead,” which the DVD featured, the movie is best understood as a horror film. As Billy Zane’s character says, “Reese Paxton has escaped from prison and returned from the dead.” In the final reel, hood-wearing white men, like zombies in a Grade B horror film, slaughter innocent black families.

Contemporary horror movies, like the “Saw” films, are morally and ethically disgusting, but “The Man Who Came Back” uses the pretext of slavery-era injustice to glory in pornographic violence and sexual acts. In the end, Billy Zane’s character clutches a book with the words “Holy Bible” on it as a final stamp of the filmmaker's contempt for Christianity. Watching this movie is like listening to a sermon by a murderer who takes pleasure in the sin he both commits and condemns. Whatever it may say about its subject, the final irony of the movie is that its greatest hypocrisy is the sanctimonious deceitfulness of the director himself.

Don’t rent it.

Violence: Extreme / Profanity: Extreme / Sex/Nudity: Extreme

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments


Negative—I chose this movie with my husband based on the fact that I had enjoyed watching Eric Braeden as a young person on “The Young and the Restless,” that was as much as I knew about the film. From the very first opening moments of this movie I was disturbed. I was only able to watch the first half of the movie and had to leave the room because the movie subject and contents was just too appalling to me. In every scene, it seemed that the writer gave considerable thought to the most horrific act that could be portrayed and that is what was performed. There was very little left to the imagination in this movie, whether it be killing, raping, beating or any other type of pornography. I was HIGHLY offended by every moment of the movie I watched, until I could stand no more. I would not recommend this movie to anyone for any reason.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3
Glenda, age 45 (USA)
Negative—When I saw that Eric Braeden starred in this movie I bought it. So sorry I was not warned of the offensiveness of this movie. If you want a movie that paints a picture of most Southerners having absolutely no backbone when it comes to taking a stand for righteousness or a movie that shows the town preacher as a despicable, lying, weak individual that is so outlandish it's to the point of being unbelievable, then this is the movie for you. Someone said it's more like a horror film. I agree. Very, very pathetic.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 1½
Kenny, age 59 (USA)