Summarized by Kent Larsen
Medved Gives God's Army 3-1/2 Stars
(God's Army (Review))
Medved Show 7Jun00 A4
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON -- Nationally known film reviewer Michael Medved
gave LDS film God's Army three and one-half stars in his review
published on his website. Medved said he found the movie,
"fascinating, riveting, and emotionally satisfying."
Meved in particular praises the film for its realistic appraisal of
the struggles that everyone, including missionaries have with faith.
He says that he was imporessed by "the inclusion of one character
who begins to doubt the whole Joseph Smith story which provides the
cornerstone of Mormon truth. He struggles over leaving the church and
the mission, and the movie never simplifies his problems nor wimps
out on his sympathetic portrayal. Faith remains a choice for these
Medved says the performances in the film are, "superior-some of them
superb-with a level of acting that most mainstream releases could
rightly envy," and praises the treatment of spiritual matters, saying
that their portrayal "never seems cheap or manipulative." The review
also says that the film, while making a case for the LDS faith, does
it in "a surprisingly subtle, balanced, sophisticated way. Dutcher
leaves unresolved questions, refusing to wrap up his gripping story
in a neatly-tied, beribboned package. . . . The picture, in other
words, displays some dramatic integrity."
"You leave the film feeling the same way I've always felt about the
LDS members I know well in real life: whatever my doubts (and they
are big ones) about their theology, you can't help liking these
people," writes Medved.
He goes on to discourage children under 10 from seeing the film
because of its "intense and serious content." But suggests that
non-Mormons who have seen LDS missionaries on the street, can get an
idea of what missionaries go through in "this amazingly accomplished
effort." Medved concludes noting that the missionaries motto in the
film is 'Let's Do Some Good Today.' "Whatever your faith, the picture
has the odd impact of filling you with the same resolve."