Top Faith-Based Movies of 2018

December 17, 2018

There is no doubt that the whole faith-based movie industry has been getting bigger over the last few years. Exploding, some might say? Many people cite Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ as the catalyst for this, but whatever the reason, there were plenty of inspirational films which—depending on where you are in the world—either appeared in late 2017, or throughout 2018. Which is awesome! More to watch, more to think about, more to bring depth to our lives and real conversations into our relationships.

 

Here is some info to help you navigate your way through them—or to them!

 

 

 

1. New Life

 

 

 

What it’s about:

Benjamin Morton's life changed forever the day he met the little girl next door.  Ava was and always would be the girl of his dreams.  From the innocence of a childhood friendship, through adolescent attraction, their love strengthens and grows. When life takes a turn neither of them expected, their entire future is called into question. NEW LIFE explores the ups and downs of life and love, showing us that in good times and bad, life can be approached with hope and the opportunity for something new.

 

Reviews:

61% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

5.8/10 IMDb

  • “…an excellent, moving portrayal of love's kindling, flaming, and flickering…”

  • “True love. Romance. Exciting, intimate, emotional connection. Fulfilling, committed partnership. Joys and sorrows. Drama...tragedy...recovery...triumph. This one's got real love and real life, folks.”

  • “…poignant, funny, romantic, and heartrending moments.”

  • “…the direction is very good and brings out the best in the actors.”

 

 

2. The Heart of Man

 

 

 

What it’s about:

A cinematic retelling of the parable of the prodigal son, interwoven with true testimonials of personal and sexual brokenness. Narrative storytelling and documentary filmmaking combine to reveal the compassionate heart of God that illuminates an age-old truth: shame is not a barrier to God's love, but a bridge to absolute transformation, victory, freedom and hope.

 

Reviews:

97% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

8.4/10 IMDb

  • “Words cannot convey the way [it] encapsulates the unconditional love of God for all mankind in Christ Jesus.”

  • “The stories of abuse and abandonment in this 74-minute-long movie will bring a tear to any eye…As the story unfolds, each person describes how God’s unconditional love and Christ’s death upon the cross brought them spiritual freedom.”

  • “…features top-quality performance, music, and cinematography. Similarly, the use of light during the testimonials, especially that of William Paul Young, is masterful.”

 

 

3. I Can Only Imagine

 

 

 

Budget: 7 million USD

Box office: 85.4 million USD

 

What it’s about:

Growing up in Greenville, Texas, Bart Millard suffers physical and emotional abuse at the hands of his father, Arthur. When Arthur becomes terminally ill, he finds redemption by embracing his faith and rediscovering his love for his son. Years later, Bart's troubled childhood and mended relationship with his dad inspires him to write the hit song "I Can Only Imagine" as singer of the Christian band MercyMe.

 

Reviews:

91% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

7.4/10 IMDb

  • “…a powerful, tear-jerker story of redemption and reconciliation.”

  • “A tremendous cast drives the emotion, from Dennis Quaid and Trace Adkins to terrific newcomer J. Michael Finley, who plays Bart Millard.”

  • “The movie is beautifully shot and well structured.”

 

 

 

4. Paul, Apostle of Christ

 

 

 

Budget: 5 million USD 

Box office: 22.9 million USD

 

What it’s about:

Risking his life, Luke ventures to Rome to visit Paul -- the apostle who's bound in chains and held captive in Nero's darkest and bleakest prison cell. Haunted by the shadows of his past misdeeds, Paul wonders if he's been forgotten as he awaits his grisly execution. Before Paul's death, Luke resolves to write another book that details the birth of what will come to be known as the church.

 

Reviews:

81% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

6.6/10 IMDb

  • “…a must-see, soul-stirring movie”

  • “a great professional cast”

  • “one of the best-acted movies about Jesus Christ, His disciples or the Early Christians.”

  • “…the dialogue is brilliantly written and beautifully uses a few passages from the Book of Acts and other books of the Bible…”

  • “…an inspiring, riveting and profound climax and ending that will motivate viewers to learn more about the New Testament, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the meaning of Christian faith…”

 

 

 

5. An Interview with God

 

 

 

Box Office: 1.2 million USD

 

What it’s about:

Paul Asher, an up-and-coming journalist, returns home from covering the war in Afghanistan and finds his life is falling apart - his marriage is failing and he's in the grips of a personal crisis he doesn't yet understand. Even more pressing, a soldier that Paul befriended in Afghanistan is struggling at home and Paul is desperately trying to help him. But, Paul's life takes a strange twist when he's offered an interview that he finds impossible to resist - an interview with someone who claims to be God.

 

Reviews:

74% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

5.5/10 IMDb

  • “…a very special piece of Christian cinema with believable characters and a challenge to think about life’s big questions.”

  • “[It] was energizing. We left the theater discussing and thinking through the deeper themes of faith, forgiveness, hope, prayer and salvation.”

  • “…gripping and entertaining.”

 

 

 

6. Indivisible

 

 

 

Box Office: 3.5 million USD

 

What it’s about:

Fresh out of the seminary and basic training, Army chaplain Darren Turner receives orders to deploy to Iraq, leaving his wife behind to care for their three young children. The harsh realities of war soon take their toll on Turner and his battalion, making it hard to stay connected to his beloved family. When Darren finally comes home, the Turners must decide if they're willing to face one more battle -- the fight to save their marriage.

 

Reviews: 

93% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

6.5/10 IMDb

  • “a high-quality, God-honoring, emotional ride, which promotes a deep dedication to Christian faith and realistic Christian support for military families.”

  • “As a Christian faith-based movie, [it] takes unconventional risks, depicting a nuanced main character who buckles under the enormous pressures of war…gritty spiritual questions. The movie doesn’t back down, however. Instead, it answers questions honestly and shows how God faithfully guides Darren and others to higher ground.”

  • “…raises the aesthetic bar for Christian movies and delivers an authentic emotional roller-coaster.”

 

 

 

 

7. Unbroken: Path to Redemption

 

 

 

Budget: 6 million USD

Box Office: 6 million USD

 

What it’s about:

Haunted by nightmares of his horrific experiences, World War II hero Louis Zamperini meets Cynthia Applewhite, a young woman who becomes his wife. Zamperini's personal demons soon threaten to destroy his marriage -- until he hears the stirring words of the Rev. Billy Graham in 1949. Embracing his newfound Christian faith, Louis starts to turn his life around by learning to forgive his former oppressors and spreading the message of peace and love.

 

Reviews:

84% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

5.6/10 IMDb

  • “…an emotionally stirring tear jerker, with great production values and a powerful ending”

  • “…has a visceral, emotionally stirring ending that will strike the audience’s heartstrings. The production quality is very good, with good costumes and sets. While the writing is very focused, with a clear direction of where the story is going”

  • “…portrays Zamperini’s salvation in a powerful fashion that gives all glory to God, yet never comes off as cheesy or overly preachy (even in scenes with preaching). The late Billy Graham, to whom the movie is dedicated, is portrayed by his grandson Will Graham in the climax.”

 

 

 

8. Samson

 

 

 

Budget: 50 million USD

Box office: 4.8 million USD

 

What it’s about:

When his youthful ambition leads to a tragic marriage, the all-powerful Samson embarks on a quest for vengeance that brings him into direct conflict with the Philistine army. As his brother mounts a tribal rebellion, Samson's relationship with a Philistine temptress and his final surrender to God will help turn imprisonment into a final victory.

 

Reviews:

54% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

4.3/10 IMDb

  • “…has some exciting moments, with a very strong Christian, biblical worldview that honors the One True God of Israel.”

  • “…offers exciting action and drama, and keeps many of the details intact…”

 

 

 

9. Mary Magdeline


 

 

Box Office: 11.5 million USD

 

What it’s about:

A young girl from the village of Magdala resists the traditional roles of women in society, and takes the opportunity to rebel by following the newly famous Jesus and his disciples.

 

Reviews:

47% Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

5.8/10 IMDb

  • “…perspective…fresh and the style impressively historical…”

  • “beautiful and thought-provoking imagery”

  • “an interesting study of femininity and faith in Jesus’ context”

 

 

 

 

If you would like more information on great films, go to movieschangepeople.com 

and for brilliant story-based resources for your church,

youth group or cell group, check out

hellostorytogether.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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