10 Movies That Were More Biblical Than “Left Behind”

10 Movies That Were More Biblical Than “Left Behind” October 4, 2014

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Last night was the opening night of the “much anticipated” re-make of Kirk Cameron’s “masterpiece” Left Behind. I’ve been talking about the movie for a good long while on the blog, so I felt it only fair I go see the movie– which, I did.

However, I didn’t want to subject myself to such torment alone. First, I asked my wife if she’d go see it with me but she turned me down. Next, I asked my sister-in-law, but she said “no thanks” as well. So, in a tongue-and-cheek post on Facebook, I posted: “Anyone want to fly out to Maine to go see Left Behind with me?”

And, here’s why I have the best fans in the entire blogosphere: within an hour of posting the status update I had a message from two readers in Minnesota, Wayne and Jodi, who told me they wanted to take me up on the offer and had just secured a flight to Maine in the morning. Less than 24 hours of posting my status update, I picked Wayne and Jodi up at their hotel, took them to see some of Maine’s beautiful lighthouses, and off to see Left Behind we went!

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The movie was impressively horrible– infinitely worse than I had expected. As I said yesterday on That God Show, there’s some really compelling events in the pre-millennial view of eschatology, and you could make some incredibly entertaining movies about it. Unfortunately, this wasn’t one of them. Beyond simply being a movie with a lousy plot-line, cheesy stereotypes, and crappy special effects, the movie was simply unbiblical.

Nothing shown in the movie is found in the Bible… no crashing planes, no mass hysteria… nada. In fact, it’s one of the least biblical movies I’ve ever seen.

But–you know me– I don’t want to leave the public hanging. I don’t want folks to have to walk away from the movie without something to replace it with. So, as your servant, I have compiled a list of alternative flicks to see– 10 movies that were more biblical than Left Behind:
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1. The Never Ending Story

Why? Because of the Old Testament. Seriously, have you tried to read it all? By the time you get to Chronicles, you start asking, “how long is this section anyway??” It’s practically a never ending story, so there you go– it’s more biblical than Left Behind.

 

Braveheart_imp2. Braveheart

Check it out: Braveheart is about a charismatic leader who leads his people to massacre their enemies in battle. Congratulations, you just watched a modern rendition of the book of Joshua.

 

star wars3. Star Wars

Think about it: an inter-galactic battle between the forces of good and evil where the good guys must rely on getting their strength from an invisible force (Holy Spirit anyone?) and the fate of the entire cosmos hangs in the balance. You got it– Star Wars is basically the narrative of scripture with some trinitarian theology tossed in for good measure.

 

MV5BMTAzNzM3NTM4NDNeQTJeQWpwZ15BbWU4MDgzOTgzMTAx._V1_SX214_AL_4. There’s Something About Mary

You remember that part in the Bible when the angel Gabriel appears to Mary to tell her she’s pregnant? Well, that’s kinda like the title to this movie. It’s as if the angel said, “there’s just something about you, Mary.” Plus, there are always women named Mary hanging out with Jesus, so that factor alone makes this more biblical than Left Behind.

 

MV5BMTI2MDY0ODEwNF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwMDI2NTk4._V1_SY317_CR5,0,214,317_AL_5. Castaway

How is a story about a man learning to live alone on a deserted island more biblical than Left Behind? Um, helloooo people, who wrote the book of Revelation anyway? John, who happened to be a castaway on the island of Patmos when he wrote it.

 

MV5BMTU5MzU2MzY2Nl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwOTM4NzMxMDE@._V1_SY317_CR0,0,214,317_AL_6. The 40 Year Old Virgin

A lot of Jesus’ followers remained unmarried and virgins throughout life. That means The 40 Year Old Virgin will invite you into the lives of some of Jesus’ core team. This movie will also help you feel more compassionate towards the Apostle Paul (wouldn’t we all benefit from that?), which is more than what you’ll get out of Left Behind.

 

MV5BMTc4NTUyNzU4MV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMzcyMTkyMQ@@._V1_SX214_AL_7. Wedding Crashers

In this movie we meet two mates who love to crash weddings and booze it up. And what was the first act that really made Jesus famous? Crashing a wedding and bringing the booze, that’s what. This my friends, makes this movie more biblical than Left Behind.

 

austin powers8. Austin Powers

This is getting ridiculous you say? Not so fast. Austin Powers is someone who comes back to the future after being in a hibernation state in order to defeat his arch nemesis, Dr. Evil. I mean, really– he comes back to defeat evil? It almost makes you wonder if the director of this film is a Christian, because that’s an uncanny similarity to the book of Revelation.

 

MV5BMjE0ODk2NjczOV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwNDQ0NDg4._V1_SY317_CR4,0,214,317_AL_9. Pulp Fiction

My favorite line in this whole movie (a classic) is when they– wait for it– recite a Bible verse from Ezekiel 25:17. Unfortunately, they took some creative licensing with their rendition of this verse, but they at least got part of it correct, which is more than I can say for the Left Behind movie.

 

MV5BMTk2NTE1NTE0M15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNjY4NTYxMTE@._V1_SX214_AL_10. Shrek

Okay, you probably think I’m off the deep end at this point, but don’t judge me. What’s so biblical about Shrek? A talking donkey, that’s what. There’s a talking donkey in Shrek, and a talking donkey in the Bible (Num 22:28), so that makes Shrek more biblical than Left Behind.

 

There you go friends. If you’re looking to see a “biblical” movie, you have a better chance at picking up a movie from the shelf and creatively attempting to find a biblical connection than you do finding biblical truth in Left Behind.

Because there isn’t any.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • bean701

    Thanks for being a voice of wisdom and peace among all the Darby-ites on my facebook feeds sir. This is made up hooey. Now, you forgot one. Blues Brothers. They were on a mission from God, so there’s that…

  • Lapequenafuriaparlante

    I laughed so hard reading this XD XD

  • Jack Kintner

    “Shrek” is Yiddish for “mess,” as in “I look like such a shrek this morning.” That happens fairly often in movies and TV shows. Magilla, as in Magilla Gorilla. Magilla means a long story, as in “Oy! I don’t need to hear the whole Magilla….” The “g” is hard in Yiddish.

  • Noah

    I’m having a hard time imagining how bad it was, if it was worse than you thought!

  • Chris Thomas

    Yes, the Blues Brothers is the most Christian film ever! It is also the most logically consistent; once you accept that they are on a mission from God, everything else flows quite naturally.

  • HappyCat

    There was so much wrong on almost every level. It was obvious they didn’t bother to do one bit of research into crisis management or tower/plane communications. Also the convenient phone working/not working as the plot demanded it. It felt like everyone was sleepwalking through the movie. When I leave a movie theater desperately wanting to rewrite the script and directing desicions, I know it’s a bad film.

  • So if Shrek is a Yiddish word, it’s inspired by Hebrew, so it is DOUBLY more Biblical than Left Behind!
    ;)

  • Even the Vatican agreed!

  • hlhkeith

    I laughed at the references, but seriously, one of the greatest cinematic examples of Christlike love and care is “Lars and the Real Girl”.

  • I’ve seen 8 out of the 10 movies you listed and your assessment. I found the marketing in the previews at the local theater before the showing of the LB movie, interesting. The first preview was a movie set to come out during the Christian season and staring, of all people, Kirk Cameron, I laughed out loud when I saw it. I attended the movie as a small research project for a group of Bible Studies that I am producing online at TrainingJesusFollowers.com, the first of which is “Decoding the Apocalypse: What the Left Behind Folks Never Told You,” If you choose to look, I would love to hear your comments. http://bit.ly/decoding1

  • Trev

    My wife and I adore that movie and I never thought of it that way. One of my personal favourite Catholic-themed movies is Dreyer’s Passion of Joan of Arc. Really, you do not need to be Catholic, it is a fantasticly meditative (which to others like my wife means slow and boring).

    Unforgiven (which would probably send most conservative Evangelicals running from the foul language and very mature themes) is also a fantastic film that deals with the realities of death and revenge.

    If I do not stop now I will go on and on.

  • Keen

    You must have had a blast writing this one!

  • andrew g phillips

    It will be a while before we get the movie here in Mauritius and I prob will not go to see it,but there is a sense in which I want to cry “whoa” to your comparisons with all the other movies. I love movies but wouldn’t have bothered to watch several of the ones you mentioned even on TV. Maybe a quiet reminder is needed that there is more to life than movies and Hollywood? The film is no doubt trash and yes we need to pull down darbyism from its perch but lets keep focussed on sensible and helpful responses evn if provocative. But hey, I love your stuff Benjamin! Be blessed and keep the twinkle in your eye! (Who recalls that horrible “darbyish” novel from the 50’s – ” In the twinkling of an eye”?)

  • Stacey (the kids’ Aunt Tasty)

    Yes! That movie is on my “Recommend to everyone I meet” list because of the stellar community. The town was miraculous.

  • VoiceOfReason71

    What? No “Night of the Living Dead”? After all those dead people walking around Jerusalem after Jesus kicked the bucket? (Matthew 27:50-54)

  • Larry TheKeyboardist Blake

    Pretty much any movie is more biblical than Left Behind. Speaking of which, where’s Life of Brian?

  • Scairp

    Poor Nic Cage. How the great have fallen…into doing crappy movies, no matter the subject.

  • Cassiecat

    I take it from reading above that you missed the fact that this is a fictional movie loosely based on Revelations, not the whole Bible.

  • Sam Mulvey

    I can think of a few!

    Dune, by Alan Smithee.

    Airplane, by the Zucker bothers.

    Equilibrim, by Some Dude.

  • Sam Mulvey

    (And I say this being a big fan of the Nic Cage.)

  • Unfortunately, since there is no rapture event listed in the Revelation of St. John, it’s not even loosely based on Revelation. It’s just make-believe.

  • Elizabeth Niederer

    Um, no. Shrek is a variant of the German word “Schreck.” Yiddish is far closer to being a German dialect than to any Hebrew connection.

  • Elizabeth Niederer

    Yeah! I was distressed to discover that he’d signed on to this trainwreck of a movie.

  • I’ve heard, but … but … why you mess up my Biblicism?
    *sob*
    ;)

  • Michael Grondin

    What? Crashing planes aren’t in the Bible? Well, Paul must have known what would happen to the planes when their pilots were Raptured, so he must have figured it wasn’t worth mentioning. (tic)

  • Bob Andrews-Bryant

    Actually, one of the most Biblical movie series in recent years is the Harry Potter series (and books). You have someone who fights evil. defeats evil by dying, then comes back to life. Sound familiar? Another great is Smoke Signals.

  • Have any of you seen The Song which came out in select theaters the weekend before LB? It’s produced by a small faith based production company, and is a modern adaptation of the life of Solomon. My tag line for this film is, “It’s like a REAL movie!” Original music. Quality acting. Solid production. And some grit not usually found in faith films. It hasn’t done well in theaters, but if you can find it, it is worth seeing.http://thesongmovie.com/#

  • Brandon Roberts

    I can’t stand stuff like left behind either that tricks the faithful into thinking it’s biblical than takes their money which could go to a good movie. And this article was awesome and very entertaining

  • Brandon Roberts

    Or porn. There’s sex in the bible coincidence? I think not

  • Brandon Roberts

    And clearly a biblical allegory

  • Brandon Roberts

    Me too. Weird that a patheos religous blog made me lmao but I like it

  • Brandon Roberts

    Not the first time been doing bad movies for a while too bad since he really has turned out some great movies

  • Brandon Roberts

    Cause money

  • Brandon Roberts

    Still not as biblical as meangirls

  • David

    Benjamin my brother, what I don’t get, don’t understand, can’t fathom is WHY a fairly talented, respected actor such as Nicolas Cage would agree to star in this obvious crap?!?

  • David

    And for the record, if I retained the humor of Brother Benjamin here, I’d be the Senior Pastor of a 20,000 mega church- um, or Mark Driscoll trolling teenage chatrooms! ;)

  • Mark Chiddicks

    ‘Unbiblical’? So its fiction, but just not the kind of fiction you personally imagine not to be?

  • jtshaw

    Now you have me thinking about a compare/contrast writing assignment for a class on Religion and Film: how about an essay addressing Left Behind and Jesus of Montreal? That’s a whipsaw that could spur some thought and likely some tears.

  • David William McKay

    Check out a little French language film called Jesus of Montreal (1989–I know I’m dating myself). Seriously, you want a serious reflection on what it means to live the biblical faith in contemporary times? http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097635

  • Rick Meredith

    Wait, you missed SAVED BY GRACE in Pulp Fiction?! You know, when Bruce Willis escapes from the evildoers by jumping on a motorcycle named Grace.

  • Proud Amelekite

    -reads through whole list-

    -doesn’t see Starship Troopers 3-

    -disappointed-

    Note to those who have seen it: It’s a good day to die, when you know the reason why. Now the song is stuck in your head. You’re welcome.

  • newfire

    Sadly , Braveheart is a bad choice for this list. Its director/lead actor played fast and loose with history, just as the Jewish bible account has done with Joshua.
    Sorry, but there were no walls around Jericho, as archaeological digs and studies have established. Read ‘The Bible Unearthed’ (Silberman and Finklestein) among others. But I suppose that is okay, as all the others listed are also fiction. Myths can have value, despite never having happened.

  • jimoppenheimer

    Aside from the fairly obvious Godspell and the famous JCSS, there are some others I think you missed.
    “Cool Hand Luke”, in which Paul Newman plays the Christ character.
    If you doubt me, just watch it with open eyes and you will probably agree.
    And then, of course there is the wonderful “Dogma.”

    And these are actually good movies, which ought to put them above — uh, certain choices.

  • Mary Day Miller

    I nominate Philomena for this list!

  • Erin Knittle

    yes yes yes! That was the one missing for us too! But think it’s pretty much a straight shot and BC was looking for more Less obvious movies :)