It's still too soon to give a well-thought-out review of what we witnessed. Because of my passion for church history, Wilberforce and Newton are heroes of mine and my recent visit to England where I saw their graves only heightened my interest.
Some reviewers say that the film drags on and doesn't capture the viewers attention throughout. I can understand that sentiment yet it was not the case with me.
Ioan Gruffudd, who plays Wilberforce, turned in a stunning, passionate performance. It challenged me to press on with the endeavors I'm involved with even though they may not seem to be fruitful much of the time. One of Albert Finney's quotes (he played the part of ex-slave trader John Newton) is "God sometimes does his work with gentle drizzle, not a bolt of lightning." A profound statement! We too often look for and expect the lightning bolts and are discouraged with the gentle drizzle or our lives and ministries.
In another scene we find Newton stating, “All that I know is I am a great sinner and Christ is a great Savior." Hopefully we all can make that same declaration! I uttered a loud AMEN at that juncture in the movie.
I'll go to watch the movie again this week. I want to be profoundly impacted more than once. I know the coldness of my own heart and one viewing will not be enough.
Should you see it? YES! Then you can make your own decision regarding the movie. In my own humble (I wish) opinion, the movie was amazing. Just like God's grace!
Following the movie the sparse crowd of 30-40 patrons sat and watched the brief vignettes showing each actor/actress and when a lone piper played Amazing Grace with an accompanying drum corps, we continued to sit in silent awe.