Standing Firm [2010] (Movie Review)

Plot Summary

After Dave Corwin’s wife died, he was confused and lost in life.  He did not know where to turn as he tried to hold his job together while not neglecting his son.  But his son’s newfound faith intrigues him, even though Dave does not understand why a loving God would take his wife away.  In the end, Dave’s journey to faith will be tested by life’s circumstances.  Which path will he ultimately choose?

 

Production Quality (1.5 points)

For a freshman production, Standing Firm is decent.  Most of its aspects are professional, including video quality, camera work, and audio quality.  Yet the soundtrack is a bit stock at times and sets and locations are somewhat limited.  Also, the editing is somewhat passive as it seems like a majority of the recorded content was included at face value.  Overall, on the whole, this is a very generic and base production, which is good for a new production company to start out with.  With a limited budget and resources, this is likely the best Praise Pictures could have done with what they had.

Plot and Storyline Quality (0 points)

Unfortunately, the plot of Standing Firm is very underwhelming and low-key.  Its theme is slow and melancholy, thus causing the story to be slow to develop.  Dialogue is quite pedestrian as the same conversations tend to repeat and rehash over and over again.  Thus, the character development is null—this creates one-dimensional characters where this character-driven plot should have complex ones.  Unfortunately, this story is a fairly limited idea that needs more complexity than it has.  Though it is simple, it does have a meaningful message; however, it doesn’t hold the attention very well, so the message is not conveyed well.  But in the end, this is still a beginner’s plot, and the good thing is Praise Pictures improved later.

Acting Quality (1.5 points)

Though this is a slightly ‘rookie’ cast, they post at least average performances.  They are not terribly dynamic in what they do, but they are not highly negative either.  There is definitely some room for improvement, especially in emotional delivery, but this is a good start that is nothing to be ashamed of.

Conclusion

Overall, though this is a modest beginning for Praise Pictures, it is definitely something to build off of.  There is a lot of potential here, especially since production and casting are off on the right start early on.  The plot does suffer for creativity, but this is something that can be easily fixed down the road.  In the end, it seems like the Praise Pictures team really does mean well, which means they will be able to go far in the future.  It will be interesting to see what they have planned next.

 

Final Rating: 3 out of 10 points

 

Love Covers All (Movie Review)

Plot Summary

When Michael goes on a business trip and leaves his very pregnant wife at home, he never anticipated the series of events that would occur.  The business trip turns out to be something he never expected to happen and this is compounded when his wife goes into labor and begins having complications.  In route home, Michael becomes stranded in the middle of nowhere and feels like all hope is lost until he begins to remember the faith he has easily forgotten about.  Will he be able to reconcile his past hurts and help those around him before it’s too late?

 

Production Quality (2 points)

Though the budget and the team were limited in what they could do with this film, it’s obvious that they were trying to create a quality production with what they had available.  The highest marks go to the excellent video and audio quality.  Camera work is also highly professional and the soundtrack is adequate.  The sets and locations are limited, but they are utilized fairly well.  However, some scenes have poor lighting and there are generally not enough extras.  Yet the editing is fine and rounds out an overall above average production effort.  It’s clear that this team cares about what they are doing, so it will be interesting to see what they create in the future.

Plot and Storyline Quality (1 point)

The biggest downfall of Love Covers All is its simplistic storyline, though it does have a meaningful message.  The writers did the right thing with a limited and pedestrian storyline: craft authentic and believable characters built on great developing dialogue.  The dialogue is one of the main saving graces of this film—without it, the story would be nothing.  The life circumstances the characters experience are very realistic and accessible, and the Christian message hits home.  However, we would have liked the plot to be a little more complex and creative than this.  But still, this is a non-typical storyline that deserves recognition.

Acting Quality (2.5 points)

This is a very strong casting job that lifts the film away from total mediocrity.  With recognizable Christian actors and actresses, each character is cast very well.  There is clear acting coaching present here as they deliver their lines and emotions with only minor errors.  This is a job well done.

Conclusion

The Praise Pictures team, like many budding creative teams, it poised to take the next step.  They have the production and casting skills necessary to create a top film—now they just need a bigger budget and more complex plots.  As a side note, the Christian message of Love Covers All is quite profound and we hope it is transferred to another film.  In short, there is so much potential here that is just waiting to be brought out, so we can’t wait to see what they have planned next.

 

Final Rating: 5.5 out of 10 points