Thursday, January 31, 2008

24 Hour Film Contest for Christian Filmmakers

This is filmHey there kids! Do you think you could make a better Christian movie than some of the ones we've reviewed on the site? Here's your chance! Christian Filmmakers.Org is holding a 24 Hour film contest on March 1. That's right, 24 hours to write, shoot, edit and submit the film. And believe me, if you have to put something on youtube it can sometimes take 24 hours to get it done right. Anyway, there's a $500 prize for the winner! You'rs truly just might enter, as I have another film contest that I'm going to enter on March 9 and I hope to have some actors gathered together for that one, so why not shoot 2 films for the price of one. Just kidding, the only price is my time, since I can't afford to pay anyone for anything. Check out Christian Filmmakers dot ORG for details! (I saw this news on Trivium Pursuit & The Panther's Lair at the same time) PS-Sorry for the slow news week, I'm digging but there's not much to report Christian movie wise this week! Look forward to a new podcast episode on the weekend though! Save This Page Add to Technorati Favorites

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Christian Cinema interview with Fireproof filmmakers

Christian Cinema has an interview with Kirk Cameron and Alex Kendrick, the two stars and one of the filmmakers behind the follow-up to the hit film Facing the Giants, Fireproof.

The interview is interesting, but it still leaves me with a nagging concern. The women characters in the previous Sherwood Pictures movies have always been the film's weak links, with poor acting and poor character development. This new film is the first one to feature a "name" actor like Kirk Cameron as the star, but the female lead is another unknown actress from the church. I hope that she is good, and that her character is well written, since that is my main concern for this film.

One interseting thing about the interview is that Cameron mentions training with his sister's(Candice Cameron Brue) husband to bulk up for the film. Apparently Mr. Brue is a former Russian Hockey player, which gives me all sorts of strange imagery when paired with the girl from Full House.

How odd is it that the only thing that could get me excited about a Kirk Cameron movie is the fact that it is an Alex Kendrick movie? Cameron, in his entire previous career, has convinced me that he has poor taste in movies. Will this one change my mind? It can't be any worse than his previous 3 acting roles, Left Behind: World at War, Growing Pains: The Returns of the Severs, and Left Behind 2: Tribulation Force. Fireproof needs to add a colon to the title to fit the trend.

(Original stories from Christian Cinema and Baptist Press)

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Monday, January 28, 2008

I Am

Writer-Director Matt Russel, who has worked on visual effects for Live Free or Die Hard, Night at the Museum, Charlotte's Web, Final Destination 3, Zathura and Blade Trinity, is finishing work on a Christian film entitled I am.

Russel describes the film as similar to Crash, about a successful businessman who decides to run for governor and then finds his life taking a turn for the worse.

Russell and Producer Jess Stainbrook screened some clips of the film at this years Sundance Film Festival, and they say that they hope that their film will appeal to non-Christians as well as Christians.

This could be a good film, but it actually sounds a lot like The Ultimate Gift to me. Rich guy goes through hard times, find Jesus. Wash, rinse, repeat.

(original story from, linked to by Christian Manifesto)
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Thursday, January 24, 2008

Summer Grove Baptist Church $60 Million film deal

Seems that Sherwood Baptist Church, the home of the Kendrick Bros. and Sherwood Pictures, doesn't have the monopoly on movie producing Churches anymore.

Summer Grove Baptist Church in Shreveport, LA(hey! I was there just a few months back!) is considering selling some of their property to a film studio that would partner with the church and produce family films with a Christian message.

It seems that the Church bought an entire shopping mall a few years back, and after turning J.C. Penny's into a worship building they have been leasing out other parts of the mall. According to KTBS,
the church "is considering a proposal by the Louisiana Film Institute and Fountain Bridge Studios to buy part of the mall. It's talking about paying the church approximately $2 million a year over 30 years."

$60 million is a substantial chunk of change. I'm sure this is all part of the state of Louisiana's film incentives, which are said to be rivaling my home state of New Mexico's. We recently had a $200 millon+ film studio built here, and Gerad Butler as just in town filming some awful sounding movie.

Anyway, this isn't nearly as home grown as the Kendrick boys and Sherwood, but it is another church getting into the film game, big time.

The church votes on this on Sunday, so we'll see if it goes through.

(story from
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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The Heartwood Dagger

Want to see a new Christian movie for free?

The Heartwood Dagger, a new film from Filmweavers, the makers of Clocks(which I've never heard of), who apparently had some of their crew members (DP & AD) work on another film we recently reported, Pendragon: Sword of His Father.

In keeping with the cutlery theme, this film is about a dagger that is passed down by the men of a family. It is passed through many generations, until one man fails to give it to his son. Now, years later, he has returned to find his son and his grandson conflicting. Can he finally pass on the family legacy and heal their relationship?

You can find out, for free! The film is having its world premiere this Saturday on TBN. It is at 4PM PST. Now, if you're like me and don't have cable TV, don't fret. Did you know you can watch TBN live streaming online? Just go to and click the link at the top "Watch Us."

I know that, Lord willing, I'll be logging on this weekend to check it out. If I can convice Don to as well, we might just review this for our next episode.

You can watch the trailer at Check it out!

Thanks to the Fond du Lac Reporter for pointing us to this movie with a great little story!

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Monday, January 21, 2008


Another week started, another new Christian movie on the horizon!

Misconceptions, directed by Ron Satlof(Academy Award nominated for 1972's short film Frog Story, and a director of a ton of Perry Mason related stuff, as well as the only good episode of Galactica 1980), is the story of a evangelical Christian who becomes the surrogate mother to a gay couple. Apparently the mother, from Atlanta, gets a directive from God to become the surrogate mother for the gay couple from Boston.

Sounds ok. But throw in Orlando Jones, most likely cast as the flamboyant gay man, and I'm in for comedy gold!

Ok, I'm not really sure if this is even what we here at SuperCandid consider a Christian movie, but any movie news involing Orlando Jones is news worthy, IMO.

(Tampa Tribune)

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

SuperCandid Podcast #21 - Amazing Grace

We all know how slavery ended in the good ol' US and A. Lots and lots of killing was required to convince people that all men are created equal, and even now we might not be completly over the whole thing.

What about jolly old England? They helped, along with the Spanish, start African Slavery in the Americas, but they ended slavery quite a while before we got around to it. Who was their Abraham Lincoln?

Would you believe, William Wilberforce? Who? You never heard of him either? Well, this is your lucky day sir, because the movie Amazing Grace, directed by British auter Michael Apted(Rome, The World is Not Enough, Up Series, Nell, Gorillas in the Mist, The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader[forthcoming]) has a history lesson for you. Starring Ioan Grufford(Fantastic Four, King Arthur, Horatio Hornblower) as Wilberforce, the movie has a fantastic cast of British character actors, including the great Albert Finney as John Newton, the former slave ship capatin who wrote the title poem/song.

How is this a Christian film? Wilberforce's main allies were Christian anti-slavery crusaders, and Wilberforce himself was moved by his own journey of faith to continue the difficult political struggle.

Tune into the SuperCandid Podcast to see what we thought of the film, which was a big hit at the US Box Office and is just recently out on DVD.

Direct Download


Video I(don) stole the intro music from.

The absurdisty humor of Lasagna Cat

All that remains of the brilliant Garfield minus Garfield.

You can find details on the Expelled ticket stubs for donations program at the official website (thanks to Laelaps for the link)

And, just for completionism, some info on Expelled.

The news story about the public high school that got in trouble for screening Facing the Giants.



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Jesus, the Spirit of God

Here's a film that a lot of other websites are already up in arms about.

Jesus, The Spirit of God, is an Iranian film about the Islamic version of the life of Christ. Partly funded by Iranian State Broadcasting, the film follows the Gospels for the most part, the divergers when, as recounted in the Koran, (SPOILER WARNING) God saves Jesus from the Cross and He ascends straight to Heaven.

I just listened to a podcast the other day discussing the Islamic view of Jesus. The theory on the podcast was that Muhammed was familiar only with the Gnostic Gospels that were popular in Arabia at the time. This would explain the way that Muhammed felt the Jesus could be integrated with the Koran.

A lot of people are upset about this film, and I can't say that I'm happy with it's theology, but it does raise an interesting point.

How do you think Jewish people feel when there are Christian movies made about Moses, Abraham and David?

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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Me & You, Us, Forever

A Christian movie is sneaking up on us fast!

Coming to Theatres nationwide on February 15, Me & You, Us, Forever.  

The plot of the movie is described on the poster, with one twist that is not mentioned in the marketing but is all over the publicity.  The guy just got divorced, and that is the event that makes him seek out his high school girlfriend.  

The Christian Post and Christian Newswire both have stories about the film reaching out to divorced Christians.  A serious problem in churches, one that the upcoming Fireproof is also dealing with.  

On the official website you can watch the trailer, and it looks like nothing special.  It seems quite sentimental and sappy, but the story of looking up old sweathearts has a lot of potential.  

Hey, maybe this will be a Christian version of High Fidelity!  That would be awesome!  

I hope that this movie takes the issues seriously without dipping to far into pandering to Christian audiences.  The premise has a lot of potential, a sort of tear-jerker with a angle at the men in the audience.  

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Buddy Guard

When we talk about bad Christian movies, they often start by taking a bad idea and tacking the "Christian" onto it, adding insult to injury as it were.

Recently we've seen more and more Christian movies that have great ideas and work hard to make something that anyone would want to see in theatres. There have been Christian movies of the past two years that have entertained non-Christian and Christians alike. We've seen movies that entertain and challenge Christians, movies that make you think about your faith and your relationship with God.

This, sadly, is a step back for the industry as a whole.

"Buddy Guard is a Christian-based movie in which bodyguard Steven Rike (played by Clevenger) is hired by a U.S. senator to watch over Buddy McKenney (St. Charles, Mo., actor Eric Barfield-Vox), a man with limited mental capacities, after an assassination attempt." - The Quad City Times

Described as an action adventure and a buddy-comedy, the news article says that many comedic moments stem from the 1-foot height difference between the characters. It goes on to say that the child-like faith of the "Buddy" character helps the bodyguard get over his own past.

So, it's Twins, if Danny Devito was a badass bodyguard and Arnold was an stereotyped mentally disabled giant.

I love to support independent productions, and even more independent Christian productions, but this movie is crippled from the start with a terrible idea. In order to get people into theatres you have to be able to hook them before they see your movie. Perhaps this movie will be good, even great. A bad idea can often be salvaged by creative people working on the film. But a premise like this, that reeks of sentimentality and schmaltz, is never going to get people into the theatre in the first place.

I should qualify that. The people who go to see this movie are going to be very similar to the filmmakers. Christian families looking for something "safe" to watch. Hopefully they will be entertained and have a good time. But for those of us who want something more than just a "safe" movie, well, I doubt many will pay for a ticket to something like this. I hope we can review this someday, just so that I can see it for myself.

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Monday, January 14, 2008

Pendragon: Sword of His Father

The Chronicles of the Willi, apparently some sort of family blog, linked to the trailer for an interesting Christian movie a couple days ago.

Pendragon: Sword of His Father is an indendpendantly produced Christian medieval action/adventure, about young Artos Pendragon(get it?) who has to take up his father's sword (got it yet?) and fight the evil Saxon invaders in 5th Century
Britannia(England). Do you get the idea yet? Don asked me if at some point an old man turns him into a fish. I can only hope, but regardless the movie looks interesting and exciting!

At the home page of Burns Family Studios you can see some photos from the film, learn about its produciton, and even sponser a character(for only $1000). The film is being supported largly through independant donations, although it looks as if it is nearly finished at this point.

Sure, it looks to have production values on about the same scale as Xena: Warrior Princess, but that is saying a lot for an independant production, and honestly I'm really looking forward to seeing what Christians can do when they set their mind to making a genre film. Is anyone else tired of every Christian movie being a character drama? We need more swords, knights and horses. Actually, strike that last one as horses are present in almost all of those awful 19th Century romances that are made based on Christian novels. So, no more horses but defiantly more flaming arrows!

This honestly looks to have a better story than the recent Hollywood hack-job, In The Name of The King: A Dungeon Siege Tale. Again, not saying a lot but a very, very refreshing change of pace for the indenpendant Christian film world. I am really looking forward to this one with high hopes!

Watch the trailer now!

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Friday, January 11, 2008

Veggie Tales: The Pirates who Don't Do Anything

Today is the opening day of VeggieTales: The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. Not really my cup of tea, and certainly not something I'm going to pay full price to see with just the wife, but it is almost certainly going to be a good time for young kids. Ahh, Veggie Tales, you've come a long way, for good or ill, from telling Bible stories on VHS tapes in the Christian bookstore. A roundup of recent stories about the new Veggie Tales movie: An interesting overview of the marketing behind the movie from The Tenessean reports and the studio's newfound desire to seek Christian audiences. Vischer also mentions in this article that he had mortgaged his house to make the first VeggieTales movie. It might sound a bit crazy, but I just learned today that Walt Disney had to mortgage his house to make Snow White. So sometimes it works out, I guess. Apparently, Catholic Online got a screener of the film when almost no other movie review site did. They liked it. Nashville Scene has an interview with Mike Nawrocki, director of The Pirates who don't Do Anything and voice of Larry the Cucumber. WKRN has a bit about the movie premiere, and they may be the only news article that notes the continued diminished role of Bob the Tomato. Christianity Today has a nice interview with Phil Vischer, talking about how preaching at people is not a good way to get them to see your movie. Truthwar blog points out a good point in the CT interview that Vischer makes about current Christian market's being a lot less tolerant of allegory and metaphor. Aslan might not make the cut today, and Narnia might be banned outright for promoting magic. If any of our readers see the film, be sure to drop us a line and let us know! Save This Page Add to Technorati Favorites

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Christian movies among those not screened for critics

Can you spot Bob the Tomato in that picture? I think he's lurking in the back, but as usual, he is notably absent from recent VeggieTales productions. I remember when he was all over them, talking about God and the Bible and such all the time.

It is usually a bad sign when movies don't screen for critics. Typically it means that the studio believes that reviews could only hurt a film, so they just skip the whole process.

Unfortunately, Universal has decided to go that route with the latest VeggieTales movie, The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything, as the Orlando Sentinel reports.

Now, this might mean that Universal is enlightened enough to be looking ahead to a time when preview screenings aren't given to an elitist group of critics who then filter out what people actually watch(sarcasm intended), but given the other movies that other movies not screened include the latest Uwe Boll videogame epic, the latest spoof from the creators of the awful Epic Movie, the latest in a long line of awful American remakes of mediocre Japanese horror films and the latest of Sylvester Stallone's 20 Years After-style sequels.

Come to think of it, I actually really want to see Stallone's latest Rambo film. It features him rescuing Christian missionaries, so maybe we could squeeze it in somehow. You think Christianity Today will do a cover story on it to legitimize it for Christian audiences?

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Advent Film Group's Come What May

Christian News Wire has a story about a new Christian film, entitled Come What May.

The film is produced by Advent Film Group(AFG), which describes itself as a Christian film school.
The article features some interesting comments by George Escobar, a producer at AFG, who says that big-budget Christian films that don't have Christian directors are examples of a broken system. He names The Chronicles of Narnia and Amazing Grace as examples of films that should, in his opinion, been directed by Christians.
An interesting position, but in our experience here Christian filmmakers who make bigger budget Christian movies often end up making really bad movies, such as Evan Almighty, while the non-Christians(or at least, the one who don't advertise their faith), make some of the better films, like Beyond the Gates(aka Shooting Dogs).
My co-host Don was excited to see that the film features a soundtrack by The Emmons Sisters and The Ivy Street Band. If you've never heard of them, join the club. (edit - I'm in the club too. Jon mistook my sarcasm for excitement. - Don)
Anyway, the film is about a high school student who must win his moot court competition in order for his parents to pay for his school of choice. The only problem is that he has to argue against Roe vs. Wade, no exceptions.
The film looks interesting, and as you know we love independent cinema here at SuperCandid, so we're hoping to see it soon. Right now they are doing re-shoots, but it sounds like the film is almost finished. Save This Page Add to Technorati Favorites

Monday, January 7, 2008

The Worst Best Of 2007

Favorite films of 2007:


1. The Host
2. There were others?

Favorite albums of 2007:


1. Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga
2. Jens Lekman - Night Falls Over Kortedala
3. Interpol - Our Love to Admire
4. The Changes - Today is Tonight (2006)
5. Metric - Grow Up and Blow Away
6. Surrogate - Love is for the Rich
7. LCD Soundsystem - Sound of Silver
8. Kings of Leon - Because of the Times
9. The White Stripes - Icky Thump
10. El Ten Eleven - Every Direction is North (and s/t)


Marie Antoinette soundtrack
Arcade Fire - Neon Bible
Radiohead - In Rainbows
The National - Boxer
Blonde Redhead
Black Moth Super Rainbow
Rob Crow
Patrick Wolf
Junior Boys
Band of Horses - Cease to Begin
** honorary mention: Hot Chip ... wasn't released in 2007, but definitely my top most listened-to record of 2007

Jon's Movies, no order but The Host is the best movie of the year:
Juno 300 Transformers Superbad Enchanted The Host Across the Universe Shoot em' Up Hot Fuzz Volver

Jon's Music:
A Fine Frenzy - A Fine Frenzy
Across the Universe Soundtrack
Brandi Carlile - The Story
Plain White T's - "Hey There Delilah"
Rufus Wainwright - Release the Stars
Paprika Soundtrack
NIN - Year Zero
Carly Binding - "So Radiate"
This will Destory you - "I Believe in your victory"
Mexico "Through the Sparks" -
The Great Spy Experiment - "Class A love Affair"
The Isles - "Eve of the Battle"
The Ark - "One of Us is Going to Die Young"
Skye - "Love Show"
Say Hi To your Mom - "These Fangs"
moi Caprice - "moi Caprice"
Iamx - "Spit it Out"
Goelm - "Warsaw is Khelm"

The first song I bought in 2007 was "Stay With Me" from The Fountain Soundtrack, and the last song was "Public Pervert (remix)" by Interpol. -jon

(ed note: I added in album titles for the ones I knew off the top of my head for Becca's list, as she didn't mention any specific titles. - Don)

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Jerry B. Jenkin's Riven Book News: Jerry Jenkins' next novel Riven story details. In an interview with him and his son, Dallas Jenkins, Jenkins the elder drops some details about his next book. Entitled Riven, it will be the story of a man who wants his execution to be a recreation of the crucifixion of Christ. Not sure how the mechanics of this will work out, given that the US has pretty strict laws about what can and can't be done in executions, but it sounds interesting, an unusual story at least. Given that most of Jenkin's popular books have been, or are being, made into movies, this one sounds like a likely candidate. Maybe Mel Gibson can direct? The interview also talks a bit about Midnight Clear, the film we reported on a few days ago. Save This Page Add to Technorati Favorites

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Episode Twenty - Flywheel

The SuperCandid Podcast returns in rare form today with a review of Flywheel, the first film from the Kendrick Brothers and Sherwood Pictures. Will it hold up against their second film, Facing the Giants, which was the best selling independent Christian DVD of all time? Or was Facing the Giants just a big sell-out? Tune in to find out as Jon(that's me) and Don(the other guy) discuss the film, some upcoming Christian movie news, and review our favorite films of the past year.

The only real link that we need to post is a link to, a site we just discovered that has Christian movie, book and music news. A good site to check out!


More links/notes:

The camera 'thing' I was trying to think of is explained here, in this excerpt from Wikipedia: Flywheel was mainly shot with one digital video camera (Canon XL1s) and a homemade dolly and jib crane."



Oh, and I wanted to post a link to the new track from Sia, who's album I raved about wanting to get this Tuesday! Go to to listen to her single, Electric Bird.

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