Reviewer: Laura J. Davis
If you are looking for a wholesome, light-hearted, moving family comedy, then you need to watch The Resurrection of Gavin Stone.
Directed by Dallas Jenkins and starring Brett Dalton (Agents of Shield), Anjelah Johnson-Reyes (MadTV), Shawn Michaels (WWE), D.B. Sweeney (Two and a Half Men) and Neil Flynn (The Middle), this is one movie you want to add to your "must watch" list.
Brett Dalton plays Gavin Stone, a washed up, self-centered former child star who is given community service hours to work off in a church, after trashing a hotel room. Dalton gives a believable performance as an unbeliever trying to convince the pastor of the church (D.B. Sweeney), his daughter (Anjelah Johnson-Reyes) and the members of the congregation that he is a Christian - all because he wants to play Jesus in their church play. It beats having to clean washrooms for community service (the alternative).
But his lack of knowledge about Jesus and Christians in general is what makes this movie so funny. As a Christian myself I found it hilarious when he searched the internet to learn "Christian ettiquette", which ranged from how to speak Christian - "Blessings! Blessings to you!" is recited repeatedly on his first Sunday morning visit to church - to Communion and the offering - he takes a handful of communion wafers and says, "No thanks!" when the offering plate is passed. These were just a few of the many comical moments in the movie and Dalton played them admirably.
My only complaint is that there should have been subtitles for when the deaf girl signs, especially at the end of the movie. The character of Stone laughs and I had no idea why.
As for the standard redemption theme, it was done so well I was crying by the end. And yes there is a love interest (he falls for the pastor's daughter) and she dislikes him instantly, but as both characters grow we see not only how forgiveness works, but also grace and especially redemption.
I thoroughly enjoyed this movie and highly recommend it!
Movie has been provided courtesy of Mongrel Media and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.