MOUNT VERNON — The movie “Courageous” opens today in theaters around the country and locally. It has been described as a Christian-based drama.
The film centers around four police officers in various stages of fatherhood trying to figure out how to be a good dad.
Marcy and Joe Rinehart of Mount Vernon attended several shooting sessions of the film last year in Georgia. Marcy had signed up on the Internet for updates on the movie.
“I signed up with Provident Films to receive updates about the ‘Courageous’ film,” explained Marcy who is station manager for WNZR, at the Mount Vernon Nazarene University. “I also registered to receive a widget for the WNZR Web site. I was very surprised when I opened the email saying that I had won an all-expense paid trip to visit the movie set.”
She, husband, Joe, and daughter, Rachel, flew to Albany, Ga., in late June 2010 for a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the movie.
“When we got to the Albany airport we were greeted by signs directing us to an air-conditioned bus,” she recalled. “Thank goodness for that because I think it was 92 degrees out there.”
Marcy said the family was treated to a fantastic dinner that night at the Riverfront BBQ in Albany. There they got to meet some of the cast and crew and were brought up to speed on the theme of the movie.
“It is about four fathers, all in law enforcement — who protect and serve together — who go through a terrible tragedy,” she said. “They begin looking at their role as fathers and begin challenging one another to fulfill God’s intention for fathers.”
Marcy’s husband teaches broadcasting and media courses at MVNU and found watching the filming to be somewhat instructive.
“We were there in June of 2010,” Joe recalled. “In some ways, I was surprised, but teaching media I was familiar with a lot of the techniques and things like lighting, weather and wind. What’s funny is when we were there it was about 96 degrees and extremely humid. So the fact that they were able to film these scenes is just amazing. In one of the scenes we saw the actors were in suits and ties and outdoors. The challenges there were very obvious.”
One of the things that impressed Joe about the whole operation is the quality of the product and the approach to the subject.
“A lot of people think of Christian films as being kind of cheesy and heavy handed,” he said. “But what Sherwood Films has done is, they have attempted to say ‘we can put a strong, biblically-based message out there and relate it to real life.’ I think they do a very good job of applying basic biblical principles to real life today.
“One of the things they stress in this film is that fatherhood is an important part of our society. The lack of fatherhood is epidemic in our society. I was reading a stat the other day that said four out of every 10 kids in America have not seen their dad for a year. That blew me away. It’s really a call to men to re-evaluate where they are in leading their families. It’s encouraging not only to take leadership of their family, but here’s what I think is the most important thing: If you see a child without a father, be willing to embrace that child. Big Brothers/Big sisters was founded on that principle.
“In our busy society we become so involved in our own home bubble that we forget there are kids out there just starving for someone to mentor them. That is the important message of the film.”
Joe said there has been a lot of early interest in the film locally and early shows might be sold out or close to it.