Takeaways from Jesus Revolution
Jesus Revolution was a great success with an opening weekend of $15 million against an estimate of $7 million. Congratulations to Jon Erwin, Brent McCorkle and the rest of the cast and crew! They were only behind Ant Man and a bear strung out on cocaine.
Christian filmmakers and those who invest in Christian film have to be very careful how they handle this news.
If their takeaway is, “See? The Hallmark demographic is the way to make money in the faith adjacent market” they fail to see that the people who spend the most money on film are those who went to Ant Man and Cocaine Bear—young men aged 18-34. They still lost to that demographic on opening weekend. We’re still waiting for a true Christian blockbuster on the scale of Ben Hur or The Ten Commandments.
If it is the takeaway, “See? The combo of a former big Hollywood name (Kelsey Grammer) and a present evangelical superstar (Jonathan Roumie) is the formula for success” they fail to acknowledge the fact that it’s not their name, but their acting ability combined with an excellent script that made Jesus Revolution work. You can have Brad Pitt and Franklin Graham, but if your script and direction sucks, it’s going to tank.
Finally, if it is the Pureflix line, “See? Someone has to preach and someone has to get saved” they fail to acknowledge the fact that this specific story worked because the preaching was not forced into the script. They also miss the fact that film is not the opportunity to make a gospel tract. It’s art.
Fortunately, the directors understood this and they made something that is beautiful, true and good. In the process, they made something that IS evangelistic but which actually does credit to the word “evangelism” because it was done well. I wrote about what they did right in my review.
Unfortunately, I do not believe Pureflix, Angel Studios or anyone else in the faith based world will get the memo.
And that’s why there’s Loor. Come join us for the next revolution in film making and distribution.
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