The Pilgrim’s Progress: The Journey Begins

The Pilgrim’s Progress

Plot Summary

The famous tale by John Bunyan now comes to life in animated form for the first time. Join Christian as he embarks on a daring quest to the Celestial City that will ultimately test his faith and endurance as he fights through each new challenge the enemy brings him in attempt to dissuade him from the path of righteousness.

Production Quality (2.5 points)

The overall production of this movie is unique and fairly well done – minus a few imperfections. One main imperfection is that most scenes are overall quite choppy and transitions are awkward. Not to mention that some scenes (especially close up staring scenes) go on for a little too long. For the most part though, as already mentioned, the animation quality is actually quite good, especially scenes involving nature. As for music quality, it’s not bad but it seems a little inconsistent. For example, it’s either too overpowering or too drowned out by extra background noises. However, these are all fairly minor issues because there is always room for improvement in nearly every film. This being said, Pilgrims Progress The Journey Begins certainly has a lot more to offer (production wise) than most Christian animated movies with just a few things that could be improved upon in a production sense.

Plot & Storyline Quality (1.5 points)

The film started out with a creative outlook on the town where the main character resides, which made one think that they were going to modify the plot in a more creative/modern way. However, they sort of overlooked this idea and continued with an edited version of the original storyline. This being said, even though they did cut out a lot of the story (obviously for the sake of time) it still seems like they tried to cram too much in a film with a medium-length run-time. This goes back to the choppy production work – not to say that the plot and storyline quality is not good, it just would have been more interesting if they had restructured the plot a little bit more. The writers didn’t need too completely change the original plot, but create a few different outlooks on things like they did with some scenes already. For example, the beginning, as mentioned, and one other very interesting outlook on the story was the Legality hill scene. This scene in particular was probably the most creative scene in the movie. Another main imperfection in the storyline was that each scene seemed very different from each other, as if they were all written at different times or by different people. These factors cause the storyline to not flow very well. All of these issues and positive qualities are why it receives said points.

Acting Quality (1.5 points)

The acting quality in this movie is somewhat mediocre at best. The beginning of the film is especially rough in this area. The mayor/superior’s assistant is quite cringe worthy, even during his very short appearance in the film. The acting seems to get slightly better as the movie progresses, and it is also quite apparent throughout the film that most of the characters are played by the same voice actors (meaning John Rhys-Davies in particular). This is not really a problem though because it does workout in the end considering John Rhys-Davies is good at what he does and this method will always save space on the budget. The one main drawback of the casting is that the main character (Christian) is a bit annoying at times – it is mostly tolerable but could be better. Overall, the acting quality is one of the the main drawbacks to the film. We should certainly like to see these filmmakers spend more time on this aspect in future films.

Conclusion

In conclusion, all said menial problems noted about this film don’t really matter that much in the end as long as the main point is established and that point is the gospel message. Although a higher production, acting and storyline quality would definitely help to get this point along more effectively, as long as it reaches individuals and families for Christ that is all that matters. This being said, Pilgrims Progress: The Journey Begins is a great movie for children and families to watch because it doesn’t treat children like they are dumb – like so many animated christian films do – and doesn’t completely lose the interest of adults.

final rating 5.5 points out of 10 points

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Joseph: King of Dreams (Movie Review)

Plot Summary

This movie tells the story of Joseph in the Bible. When Joseph receives more attention and a special gift from his parents. His ten brothers hate him even more than they already did and after the dreams that Joseph told his brothers about them. They decide to sell him to desert merchants, who take him to Egypt. There he is made the servant of the wealthy Egyptian (Potiphar). Who eventually has Joseph thrown into prison because he mistakes him for insulting his wife. Joseph then shows his God-given gift by interpreting the dreams of two other prisoners. Eventually, the Pharaoh begins to be plagued by dreams, and sends for Joseph, who interprets them and saves Egypt in the process. He is made second in command to Pharaoh. Eventually his brothers arrive in Egypt and Joseph must decide if he is going to forgive them.

Production Quality (3 points)

This movie has very good production quality being that it is very similar to its predecessor The Prince of Egypt, in music quality and animation quality. It is yet another rare well done animated Bible based film from Dreamworks back in the early two-thousands. It does a good job of portraying this great Bible story through well constructed scenes and musical numbers. One especially creative aspect is how it creatively portrays Joseph’s dreams and flashbacks with artistic flare. Therefore this is yet another rare animated Bible film where it is actually good quality. While also not treating kids or whoever is watching like they are stupid. Hence it receives the above rating.

Plot and Storyline Quality (2.5 points)

Surprisingly enough Dreamworks was actually able to stay spot on to genuine story of Joseph in Genesis. They do move through the story quickly so some minor parts are skipped. However, this is only due to how much time they have to work with in the film. They do add a few scenes here and there concerning what Joseph’s activities as a slave could have entailed. However, this is no great issue concerning the plot. For the most part though the plot and storyline is very good except for a few historical discrepancies. Which is why it receives the above rating.

Acting Quality (3 points)

The acting quality in this film is yet again very well done, considering that the actors do a very good job of portraying emotion and skill. This is because this film has a very distinguished cast. If only most live action christian films had this quality of acting the christian film industry would be in a very different place than it is currently. Therefore there are no problems to mention in this area of the film.

Conclusion

In conclusion Joseph: King of Dreams is a must see for the whole family of all ages. Which is definitely what we here at BoxOfficeRevolution hope to accomplish with this page. To seek out Christian animated films that can be watched by all ages and actually teach people something while not treating it like their are dumb. For their are certainly a lot of those sort of films out there.

Final Rating 8.5 out of 10 points

The Prince of Egypt (Movie Review)

Plot Summary

In this animated retelling of the Book of Exodus, upon discovering his roots as a Jewish slave and upon promptings from God. Egyptian Prince Moses embarks on a quest to free his people from bondage. When his plea is denied by his brother Ramses, the new pharaoh, a series of horrific plagues strike Egypt. However, upon following Gods instructions, Moses finally leads the Israelite’s to freedom by parting the Red Sea and drowning the Egyptian army. God then gives Moses the Ten Commandments, a list of rules for his people to live by.

Production Quality (3 points)

The Prince of Egypt is still today the best animated christian film to date. Dreamworks surprised everyone back in the late 90’s with the idea of making a musical/biblical rendition of the story of Moses (The Prince of Egypt), in his early life. The production quality of this movie is superb especially considering the age. Not only is it a well done Biblical epic it is also a wonderfully orchestrated musical. It is very rare to have not only a well done animated christian production but also one that manages to add an original soundtrack on top of it all. The music as mentioned already, is excellent one main reason for this is that it really adds to and tells the story very effectively. It’s not like other animated productions where there are mindless sing along sessions where the characters randomly burst out into shallow (not to mention really annoying) singing for a “montage” or a “funny moment”. This brings us to the other main point for why the music is top notch. The characters can actually sing! Not to forget of course that the music is composed by Hans Zimmer and Stephen Schwartz, so you know you can’t get much better than that. Anyway to sum it up you won’t be able to find a much better quality production in an animated christian film than this one.

Plot and Storyline Quality (2 points)

The plot of The Prince of Egypt is overall excellent like the rest of the movie, they slightly altered and added to the original Bible story only slightly. Although we are not sure what actually occurred in the real story as far as moments with Ramses and Moses or the scenes with Egyptian Priest’s Hotep and Huy (which are not their real names by the way). Another aspect of the plot versus the events in the Bible, is that of Moses’s age when he confronted Pharaoh. As stated in Exodus 7, Moses was eighty years old as well as was Aaron when confronting Pharaoh. Which we are not clear of in the movie as far as how old Moses is, however, it is pretty obvious he is not eighty years old in said moments. This is not to even mention the total absence of Aaron alongside Moses in the movie. Compared to what the Bible says concerning that God sent Aaron alongside Moses to confront Pharaoh because Moses was worried about having to speak. Nevertheless this is not the case in the film, they basically combined Moses and Aaron into one character and the Aaron in the movie is for the most part absent from the film. In the end these are just nit picky complaints, however, just so it’s made known that it is not entirely accurate to what the Bible states. For the most part though the plot is very well done and authentic in that they tried to stick to the true story for the most part. Nonetheless, we cannot overlook inaccuracies of the Bible that is why it has received a lower rating in this area.

Acting Quality (3 points)

The cast of The Prince of Egypt is also of course excellent. All the characters are very well cast and their quality of acting is superb. It certainly makes a massive difference in the quality of a film especially an animated film to have a capable cast. It would be very easy to say that The Prince of Egypt also steals the prize for the best acting quality for a Bible based animated film. There are really no complaints here at all for acting quality, characters do not put on an overbearing or glass half empty performance.

Conclusion

This film is one of the best ideas Dreamworks has ever had, what better way to make a movie than one based off of a Bible story. Even better still one that manages to pull of a wonderful musical (yes I’ve mentioned this a lot already:) that manages to add to the plot of the film. In conclusion this film is a must see for all ages and all demographics.

Final Rating 8 out of 10 points