May 11, 2022
We did some polling to find out.
For those of you who don’t know, the “unflinchingly honest” film Father Stu hits cinemas tomorrow. Is it worth going along to see?
Well last week we, along with Sony Pictures, held some pre-screening events to find out what people thought. We got a looooot of feedback from the hundreds and hundreds of people who attended those screenings in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth and the Sunshine Coast (our home town). And this is some of what they had to say:
“Powerful inspiring move, great acting, perfect amount of humour, very relatable! Go and see!”
“Get ready for both your heart and your head to get captivated in this brilliant story.”
“It made me laugh out loud, and also cry a river of tears.”
“Fabulous true story with great acting.”
“How God’s servants aren’t always angels!”
“It was beautifully written and well executed.”
“It’s an honest depiction of God’s grace.”
“Inspirational and an amazing testimony.”
“A heartfelt story that pulls the heartstrings.”
“Thought-provoking, deep, and thoroughly entertaining.”
“An inspiring testimony of God’s grace and love.”
“This is a role Mark Wahlberg was made for. Knowing he funded this as his own passion project just makes this all the more enjoyable — his brutally honest depiction of complicated, genuine faith is a gift!”
There were other people (admittedly, a very small percentage) who gave feedback too, people who had things to say about “the language”.
We love these people’s responses too. We love the fact that there’s a wide, wide range of people who are interested in discovering the kinds of films that we love and bring to Australia (and New Zealand!).
But if there is one thing to note with Father Stu, it’s that the makers of this film told Stuart Long’s true story without pulling any punches. Stu was a real person, who started out in this life quite differently to how he finished.
Honestly? We love that. We love the fact that this film isn’t all sweet and perfect, as if the world we live in, and the people in it, are all sweet and perfect. We love how gritty and authentic it is. We think that makes Stu’s testimony shine all the brighter. We think that reminds people that there’s hope for all of us, not just the ones who are “doing everything right”. We think it means that the incredibly hope-filled and redemptive message of this film may reach the people who need to hear it the most.
If Father Stu doesn’t fit your idea of the kind of films people “should” be making, that’s okay. But we recommend an open heart. And not just when you’re at the movies, but in every moment of life.
Seeing Father Stu might even help you. Enjoy!
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Movies Change People acknowledges the Traditional Owners, the Kabi Kabi and Jinibara people, and the broader First Nations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) community on the Sunshine Coast, on whose land we meet, share and work. We pay our respects to Elders past and present and extend our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from all nations of this land.