Review: The Second Chance

I had the opportunity to watch the movie The Second Chance recently, and the first thing I did when I finished was rewatch it– with Tim by my side. 

That pretty much sums up this review.  If it’s good enough for Tim, it’s good enough for you.  Watch it.

As far as Christian popular media goes, it can be pretty tough.  Whether we’re talking Christian books, music, movies,, or whatever: so often, the quantity may be less offensive–at the sacrifice of the quality of the work, or its depth, or its meaning.    I really, really appreciate listening to clean music, watching clean programs, and reading clean books.  I want to fill my mind with things that are pure.  But I hate that in our world, clean has somehow become equivalent with trite.  I want something clean and wholesome and lovely–that I can take seriously, that touches me deeply, that challenges my presuppositions and prejudices, and that points me to Christ by doing so.  Umm, yah.  And I’d like some beachfront property in Colorado, too, please, that Tim and I can afford to buy as a vacation property.

Which makes me all the more delighted to stumble across (I hate that word, because it cost me my 4th grade spelling bee) something like The Second Chance.  While not perfect, Tim and I both felt like it did an admirable job of addressing real issues (in the world and in the church) in a very godly way.

The Second Chance is the story of two pastors coming to terms with their ministry.  Michael W. Smith provides the ‘big name’ as far as acting goes, but the whole film is pretty well cast.  In the film, the producer takes a fairly honest look at some of the problems plaguing modern Christianity, especially as relates to actively loving our neighbor. 

It’s rated PG-13, which actually surprised me–no nudity, no sex, no profanity, some mild cursing (not portrayed favorably both for the wrong reasons and the right reasons), some drug use (clearly portrayed as negative), some gang violence (also clearly portrayed as negative).  I would have called it a fairly family friendly film (of the slightly more serious sided variety). 

Its message is explicitly Christian and delivered by means of several well placed Scriptural references and a handful of godly examples.  Yet as I said before, this is not done in a way that trivializes the plot or leaves Christians safe in their (self-righteous?) seats or undermines the importance of the church or speaks condescendingly to any unsaved in attendance.  Rather, the Bible is applied to real issues and (seemingly) real situations, and it is in the (professedly Christian) characters’ own responses to the Living Word that the (largely Christian) audience will discover application to their own hearts–what does real love look like?  How can I practice it?  What are my priorities?  On what have I built my hope?

So, like I said, track it down.  Watch it.  Host a neighborhood movie night, and show it to some of your non-Christian friends.  For that matter, watch it with all your Christian ones.  Tell me what you thought.  Evaluate your ministry in light of God’s word.  And place your trust in the only Rock that was made to last.


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