When he blows his chance to make it big on the golfing scene, Luke Chisholm has a televised meltdown that leads to him running from his controlling father and crashing into a farm fence. The owner of the land, rather than take him to the authorities, decides to let him stay there and learn some finer points of golf. Frustrated and skeptical, Luke begins taking eccentric golf lessons from the older man and soon finds that the farm, Utopia, is more than it seems, just as his new mentor is more than he seems. Little does he know that he is about learn more than just how to play golf better, but how to win in life, and that seven days in Utopia can change everything.
Production Quality (2.5 points)
Seven Days in Utopia is obviously a well-made project. The creators did their production homework and scored. The camera work is great and enhances the film, including artistic camera angles and clear video quality. Outside scenes are filmed well. The musical score is intriguing. The surroundings are authentic. The only caveat to raise here is that some parts seem like they need to be edited better—there are some wasted scenes that only fill time. But otherwise, Utopia is a top-notch first-time production that should serve as a model to follow.
Plot and Storyline Quality (2 points)
For a sports plot, Utopia is very unique psychological journey. It reminds the audience that there is more to every sport than just technique—athletes are people with pasts that need to be dealt with appropriately. While the message is not as explicitly Christian as it could have been, the point is clear: behavioral tendencies need to be explored head-on into order to live up to one’s full potential. The plot of Utopia is a slow burn, and is more than it seems, which is also conceptualized in the plot. Flashbacks are used exquisitely to strengthen the story. Dialogue is profound and the characters are solid. As previously mentioned, there are too many filler scenes that keep this plot from being all that it could be. However the end of the movie is extremely epic and changes everything for it. Without this end, this movie wouldn’t be what it is. Utopia has arguably one of the best sports ends on the market. In short, while it had room to grow, this film is definitely one of the best of its genre.
Acting Quality (3 points)
This is obviously a professional and well-coached cast. This is not an exclusively Christian cast, but there are no acting errors here. Emotional delivery is great and line delivery is solid. There is nothing to complain about here.
Utopia is a one-of-a-kind movie; there has never been one like it and there likely won’t be again. It should serve as an example to the inspirational market of how to make a niche movie that stands out among the rest that are easily forgotten. We were disappointed in its lack of a clear Christian message, but Christian elements exist. Nevertheless, it earns a Hall of Fame spot and its concepts should be replicated in different and creative ways. The Christian market desperately needs more movies like this.
Final Rating: 7.5 out of 10 points