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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1 comment:

AceFire said...

You hit the nail on the head with this one! That has been the problem with Christian moviemakers - playing it safe! Nobody goes to a football game to watch players play it safe! Every great football (or team sports) game is filled with high stakes, intense action and certain levels of uncertainty. Being a Christian does not mean easy life - I think a few Western Christians should go to China/Saudi Arabia and come with back some real fire when they witness Christianity in the face of intense opposition. Much needed in Christian film-makers in terms of depth, scope and height of story whatever genre that is being made.