After the Resurrection of Jesus, the Jewish religious leaders sought to stamp out all remaining traces of those who followed Him. However, they were largely unsuccessful at stopping the spread of the Gospel right under their noses, so they employed a radical in their midst named Saul to lead the charge of ending the teachings of Jesus once and for all. Though he had success at first, Saul slowly changed until he was shocked by his Damascus road experience and his life was completely turned upside down. Then he proceeded to turn his world upside down, even as his former employers tried to kill him.
Production Quality (1.5 points)
John Patus, along with the Leif Films team, has had an up and down career mostly marked by apocalyptic failures (literally). Yet he and the Leif Films team seem to work relatively well together in Biblical productions. Although there is some randomly shaky camera work in this film, video quality is great and audio quality is professional, including an interesting soundtrack. However, there are some odd and unnecessary special effects that put a damper on things. The outdoor locations are quite good, even if the indoor sets and props need some work. Finally, the editing of this film is inconsistent, although it’s not all bad. In the end, this is an average production that definitely has room for improvement, yet it is a good effort.
Plot and Storyline Quality (2 points)
Though there is unnecessary narration at first, it subsides and allows the story to unfold naturally. Saul: The Journey to Damascus is actually an honest and accurate depiction of historical events that does not allow the extra-Biblical content to clutter things. The Biblical characters are relatively well-developed and are real people that can be related to. The main things that hold this plot back from being perfect are one too many slow and seemingly unnecessary scenes that put a drag on things. Sometimes dialogue is good, but other time it just seems to fill time. The ending is very effective and appropriate. In the end, this is a very refreshing plot in a market that usually produces such poor storylines. It gives great hope for the future of Biblical film.
Acting Quality (2 points)
Acting is a mixed bag as the costuming is historically authentic, yet not many of the cast members are culturally accurate. Some are British, while others are American or Canadian, but we know how difficult it is to cast Biblical films properly. However, though this cast has plenty of talent and potential, some members need to coached a little better. But overall, this is a mostly a job well done.
It’s refreshing to have a film that’s not across the board terrible, especially a Bible film. It’s rare to have a film that has as many bright spots as this one, yet does not go all the way and reach Hall of Fame status. Yet nonetheless, this is a film to be proud of and one to build off of. It offers a Biblical film model that can be replicated and improved in the future. Thus, it’s definitely worth a watch.
Final Rating: 5.5 out of 10 points