Higher Ground

Bottom Line: This film about Evangelical Christianity in the ’70s is respectful, but falls short of being profound.

The Gist: The movie follows Connie Walker (Vera Farminga, who also directed) from her secular childhood, teen love, early marriage, conversion to faith,  Christian life, and eventual questioning and falling away, focusing heavily on a Jesus-people style group of Christians in the ’70s and ’80s.

The Verdict: People interested in faith on film should watch it, everyone else will be bored. The film does not mock its subject matter, which is refreshing, but it does question it. For the most part, Farminga is so careful to not disrespect the faith she examines that the movie feels like a documentary: factual but with little commentary or emotion. The one scene that does break your heart has little to do with faith and everything to do with the tragedy of love lost. The lack of attention paid to Connie’s struggle and questions is staggering, but the film should be a call to people in the church to examine themselves and not to disparage Farminga’s attempt to honor and respect her upbringing while still not embracing it.

Be Aware: Rated R for some language and sexual content. The language is pervasive and the sexual content is not graphic and happens mainly in the context of marriage. Not a movie for teens unless parents have prescreened it.

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