Interesting development regarding the movie "Evan Almighty", which we will see when it comes to Europe next month. Bob Beltz emailed me to say how much he loved the movie and respected it as the kind of movie that his team at Walden Media has been promoting and producing. In fact, Bob has been collecting opinions on the movie and doing a chat-by-email kind of discussion that I have been privy to.
It seems the movie had some mixed reviews and it really is a pity Jim Carrey doesn't feature like he did in Bruce Almighty. But there might be something of a long tail building up behind the movie comprising of people who really enjoy the movie's message and dont view it as a complete theological statement.
Helping that long tail along was my friend Marko who was providing do-it-yourself kindness kits through the Ark Almighty website - something that has been helping people perform their own random acts of kindness and tracking who was doing what around the country. Thats USA . .. not other countries.
Despite resembling BMI Baby airlines in the UK, the Ark Almighty location is a good strategic site and perhaps a model in partnership between church and hollywood in making and tracking an impact in society. The kits may have run out but there is still scope on the site to sign up for some random kindness stunts.
Big question for some is the faith stance of Director Tom Shadyac. Bob Beltz gives him the thumbs up which is good enough for me. But you may want to hear Tom respond to the question yourself . . .
"I don't like the label because of what the word Christian has become today, unfortunately—many people think it means "judgmental" and that it carries certain political ideas. I'm a Jesus freak. I respond to Jesus, the messages of the Sermon on the Mount, to this guy who talked about loving your neighbor and loving your enemy. I know what's moving me, and I know what I want to be true to in my work. And if people pigeonhole me for that, I don't really care"
Tom Shadyac, interviewed on Christianity Today
Some of the inspiration for random acts of kindness was from Steve Sjogren of Servant Evangelism. I remember reading about his crazy ministry stunts back many years ago - giving out free water to motorists. In fact, I think we even did a few of these ourselves in our attempt, as Glen Campbell once aptly put it, 'to try a little kindness'.
OurChurch has a full and helpful post on their blog.
Bill from Provocative Church liked the movie but is a little suspect about the "shameless marketing" on the part of churches and the movie's hype about being the next greatest outreach tool for the church. Fair enough. Its just a movie.
Jeremy Del Rio has thoughts.
Christian Post discusses its environment-friendly impact.
Marko at Youth Specialties has a partnership with grace hill media and universal studios so he obviously recommends watching the movie and doing something about it.
BloggerNews calls it "charmingly funny".