“Amazing Grace”: Don’t Judge a Film By Its Preview

I can’t publish my review of Amazing Grace yet. But I will say this. The preview led me to believe it would be cheesy, overly sentimental, and old-fashioned in the worst kind of way.

I’m pleasantly surprised to tell you that you should plan to see it on opening night. There are plenty of highlights that make it worth your time and attention … not the least of which is its unapologetic celebration of Christian faith, and strong (if unfortunately brief) performances by Albert Finney, Michael Gambon, and Rufus Sewell (playing a sympathetic character for the first time in a while, thank goodness!) Oh, and Romola Garai once again demonstrates that she’s leading lady material and one of the most radiant beauties of the big screen.

Anyway… the review is forthcoming, but I just want you to know that you shouldn’t judge this one by its preview. It’s better than that.

It also contains one rather memorable blooper, but you have to watch carefully to catch it…

Oh, and if you WANT a review, there are a few sites who have published them early…

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About Jeffrey Overstreet

Jeffrey Overstreet has two passions: writing fiction, and celebrating art — music, cinema, photography, literature — through writing and teaching. He is the author of a “memoir of dangerous moviegoing” — Through a Screen Darkly. And his four-novel fantasy series, The Auralia Thread, which begins with Auralia's Colors, was published by Random House. He speaks at universities and conferences around the world about understanding art through eyes of faith. He is earning his MFA in Creative Writing at Seattle Pacific University, where he has worked for 11 years as an editor, writer, and communications project manager. His work has been recognized in The New Yorker, TIME, The Seattle Times, IMAGE, Ravi Zacharias International — and Christianity Today, where he served as a film journalist for more than a decade. He recently began a weekly column called "Listening Closer" for Christ and Pop Culture.

  • Tim

    Oh good grief. That Slant review is absolutely ridiculous, and has a complete misunderstanding of what it means to be “conservative” or “liberal.”

  • Tim

    I’m definitely looking forward to this one! I’ve been hoping, hoping, hoping that it would be good. It’s got great material to build on…

  • Peter T Chattaway

    The reviews I’ve read so far are enough to keep me cautious, but for what it’s worth, I’ve been hearing similar things about Walden Media’s adaptation of Bridge to Terabithia — i.e., that the trailer tricks you into thinking the movie will suck, and then it turns out the movie doesn’t. Is this some new sort of reverse-psychology marketing ploy, I wonder?

  • Neil E. Das

    Wow, often enough the trailer is better than the movie. It is good to hear that the opposite is true, especially in this case. I am excited.

  • stephen

    I’ve very glad to hear that! My admiration for Wilberforce is boundless after recently reading a biography on his life, so I was hoping the film does him some justice. Michael Apted is capable of doing good work. I thought ENIGMA from several years ago was an under-appreciated film.