Can I Get a Witness Protection? (Movie Review)

Can I Get a Witness Protection? (2016) movie posters

Plot Summary

When Jack and Julie are forced into the Witness Protection Program to prevent criminals from killing them because of what they saw, the only obvious option is for them to pose as Christians in a local church. Jack is supposed to be a new associate pastor, but when the lead pastor suddenly dies, Jack has to take over the church! However, Jack isn’t even a Christian, so of course, he has to fake it! Can the couple pull the wool over the flock’s eyes and avoid henchmen who are after them?

Production Quality (1.5 points)

Although the video quality and camera work are fine, the audio quality is quite inconsistent throughout, including a cheesy soundtrack. Sets, locations, and props leave something to be desire, and special effects are quite cheap. Editing is mostly pedestrian, but there’s enough production improvement as the film goes on to warrant an average score.

Plot and Storyline Quality (0 points)

It seems like the forced premise wherein a non-Christian character is forced to be Christian has really been done before and is quite worn out. If it must be done, the characters should at least be accessible and realistic, but instead, the comedy in this narrative is extremely forced and unfunny. It’s hard to determine where this story is intended to be a parody, but the dialogue and circumstances therein are quite absurd. The characters seem purposefully over-the-top as the writers try way too hard to make sure you know how funny it’s supposed to be. Nonsensical plot turns happen just because the need to and only lead to predictable conclusion. Besides these typical pitfalls, strange crude humor and bizarre jokes make for an overall unusual experience. Thus, with no creativity or potential, this section receives zero points.

Acting Quality (1 point)

Extreme emotions accompany the movie’s overall in-your-face feel, and comedy acting is eye-rolling. Many performances are overdone, annoying, and cheesy, and the line delivery is mostly uneven. Nonetheless, there are some acceptable parts in this section that are enough to warrant at least one point.

Conclusion

What can audiences really get out of these types of quasi-Christian attention getters? Just trying to make a play for faith-based viewers is a worn-out tactic that people are becoming more and more wise to. If you’re desperate to make a Christian film or series, there’s plenty of source material from books, both fiction and non-fiction, that would be ten times more successful than more mindless comedies like Can I Get a Witness Protection?

Final Rating: 2.5 out of 10 points

Matchmaker Mary (Movie Review)

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Plot Summary

Join Mary and her happen-chance band of friends in a heartwarming (?) journey of taking care of puppies and forcing people to hang out with each other.  Watch as she inserts herself into the private lives of people in order to coerce them into liking each other.  With her parents unstable and fighting at home, Mary ventures out to spread her cheer elsewhere, hoping to project her insecurities on helpless loners who never asked for her help.  She collaborates with her unusual aunt, who has taught her how to meddle in other people’s business, but little do all of them know that by the time this movie is over—if you make it that far—everyone will have a match of their own!

 

Production Quality (-1 points)

If you can’t tell by now, we didn’t particularly like this so-called Christian movie.  It could have joined a host of other movies like it on the Hallmark or Ion channels, but the production is so bad that there’s no way it would have been picked up or aired.  Hallmark and Ion still have production standards, believe it or not.  Matchmaker Mary was likely filmed with a camcorder at the local pet store and the surrounding areas.  The video is grainy, the sound terrible, and the camera work shaky.  The musical score is childish.  There’s really no care taken to even make this film watchable on a surface level.  This begs the question—why was it even made?

Plot and Storyline Quality (-1 points)

It’s perfectly understandable and commendable to portray a movie about a grade school girl who is having to deal with her parents’ strained relationship—this happens far too often and needs to be exposed.  However, where are the mentions of Mary going to God with her problems?  Rather than bury herself in puppies and busybodying around, a Christian message needed to be introduced here, if this movie is meant to be Christian.  At this rate, we’re not sure.  We’re also not sure why PureFlix even distributed it, but at this point, we’re not really surprised at anything they do anymore.  There are too many head-scratching moments in Matchmaker Mary to count.  Characters say odd things in out of place ways, situations are trumped up, and the entire premise of the plot is completely absurd.  If this film is trying to be ridiculous, it succeeded.

Acting Quality (-1 points)

As previously alluded to, the actors and actresses behave in generally strange ways that cannot really be explained or described.  It’s almost like they were instructed to act off the wall.  If they were not, then we really don’t know what to think.  But that pretty much describes our entire experience watching this movie.

Conclusion

This is the state of American society—movies like Matchmaker Mary are funded and distributed while it is likely that many other well-meaning and under-funded geniuses struggle to survive in the movie world because they simply don’t know the right people.  In reality, people don’t really repair and build real relationships on the basis of puppies.  We don’t need any more movies that contribute to unrealistic fantasies that already permeate our culture.  Films like this are best forgotten and buried under the memories of better movies watched and better movies still to come.

 

Final Rating: -3 out of 10 points