Why Christian Movies are BAD | The Problem with Christian Media - Part 2

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Sean Paul Murphy : As the screenwriter of a number of PureFlix films, I could hardly agree more with your perspective. I grew up watching indie films of the 80s and 90s, those filmmakers managed to make art with small budgets because they had a passion for the medium. It's not the budgets. It is a disregard for the art of filmmaking. And faith films will not get better until the audience demands something better, but they tend to evaluate films solely on the message itself. As for the counterproductive hatred of atheists and other non-believers, I tried to buck that trend. In Hidden Secrets, the first film produced by PureFlix (but its second release), my co-writer and I sought to create a fuller, more sympathetic portrayal, and, if the following review is any indication, we succeeded: "But don't dismiss Hidden Secrets as The Big Chill rewritten from a Christian perspective. It has the nerve to make one of its most appealing characters, a stem-cell researcher played by John Schneider, an atheist and the least appealing a scripture-spouting hypocrite. While its proscriptive tendencies might not sit well with some moviegoers, it does strive to distinguish between sinner and sin. Even the death merchant and the homosexual - played by Arkansan Corin Nemec - are worthy of love and respect; it's their actions that God despises." Nowadays, however, the audience reward films that fight the Culture War for them. It is easier to generate anger than compassion. I have no interest in that. As for the muddled purpose of Christian films, I think you will appreciate my recent blog: http://seanpaulmurphyville.blogspot.com/2017/09/building-faith-based-film-ghetto.html

SerMortzio : It's genuinely pleasant to see a Christian actually noticing that these films are blatant propaganda and the portrayal of atheists is ridiculous. Good video :)

louthegiantcookie : In Christian movies, the Christians do not talk like real people, they do not listen to real music, they seem incapable of any personality outside of their faith. We know this is not true of Christians in real life, but in these movies they are portrayed as asocial weirdos, constantly smiling, and unable to function among normal humans.

Lars Pallesen : What's particularly hilarious about the first God's Not Dead movie is that the strawman atheist professor isn't even an atheist in the movie. He believes in God alright, he just happens to be angry with God because of something that happened to his wife. That's not an atheist. That's a bitter and angry theist. If you think a God is responsible for everything that happens here on earth you're a theist, not an atheist.

Adam Tatti : You know, for a religion that says all are welcome, these movies really are close-minded. I’m a Catholic and I hate these kinds of movies.

Anthony Metcalfe Barry : This is why I'm going to film school. To change the Christian movie industry. Because at the moment I kinda wish that there was no Christian movie industry because of how messed up it is.

Moving Parts Gaming : I clicked on this expecting a brutal take down of Christian movies. I was pleasantly surprised by tone and view of the situation.

Nagayuki Tatsumi : My mom enjoys watching these kinds of movies and always wants me to watch them with her. Whenever I refuse it's because I'm "rejecting God" and stuff like that. No, I'm rejecting bad films that I cannot sit through without wanting to go shoot myself. I was actually forced to see God's Not Dead in theaters with my parents way back when it came out. I didn't want to see it, but my parents did, so I was forced to go. The whole time I was wondering what time it was and how long the film was. Again, some might say it's because I'm "rejecting God", when in reality, I would just rather go and see an actual good film, not this shit.

Caleb Hu : We used to get good Christian films: It's a Wonderful Life, Ten Commandments, Ben-Hur, Chariots of Fire, Prince of Egypt... These were films that didn't shove dogma in your face. They allowed you to think for yourself and had a more universal theme that was deeper than mere propaganda.

Ulquiorra Cifer : I clicked on this by accident. I am so glad I did. As an Atheist, I always hated those Christian movies, for reasons I am sure you understand. I found this video to be enlightening, and am glad to have watched it.

Kenneth Humphrey : Christian movies don't convince people to be one way or another, they just reinforce people beliefs that they already have. If an Atheist did go to this type of movie it would just reinforce their beliefs that Christians are shallow. Christian movies are bad because the values of the people producing these films are in plain sight.

Roll Like A Buffalo O_O : The only good Christian movies to me are Prince of Egypt and Joseph, King of Dreams. Thats it.

Eli Egbert : In christian movies I also love how the actors are either valley girls or ripped surfer dudes, I also love how new converts become master theologians in 15 minutes after being saved. *sarcasm of course*

Bottemiller Postings : Someone needs to make a movie advertised as a wholesome Christian movie. When you actually watch the movie, it’s a bloody realistic depiction of the crusades. At the end, the pope turns to the camera and says: “well, it IS a Christian movie!”

Dr0pkidd : The "Us vs. Them" thing brings in money...

mc bad robot voice : a movie should have a message. a message shouldn't have a movie

chrisw443 : Great video, from an atheist, thanks for not hating me, I take pride in making sure everyone can practice whatever religion they want. :)

Bush did 9/11 jet fuel can't melt steel beams : *God's Not Dead 2: Electric Boogaloo*

Araya Foster : im agnostic and my family always tries to force the religion down my throat by making me watch these things, and i either watch them angrily throughout, or watch them snickering the whole time at how bad they are. i remember one time when a high school teacher made my entire class to watch one of these things and claimed we watched it for the good morals but you could blatantly tell he was trying to force it at us (actually a clip of it was shown at 2:12). i just dont like these things, maybe if they made a genuinely good movie that got close to best movie of the year id watch it, but none even come close. i think noah? i think that one was dope but the rest ive seen are trash edit: and when that example of the concert of booing people was brought up, i relate to it. and i agree that it is very disrespectful. i was personally taught that being gay was bad and gross etc my whole life, and when i realized i was bi when in grade 7, i was devastated, i tried so hard to crush on the guy, but this one girl just couldn't leave my head. i got terribly depressed and started to notice the shunning i was getting from my "friends" for being so overtly religious all the time. i then went on to question my religion all together, became friends with this girl who happened to be an atheist and i just figured out the world of science and stuff. so the fact that i was told gay was wrong, made me question and eventually leave religion. and looking at christens now, i see a good handful of them to be hateful and ignorant because thats what i grew up with. (but this dude doesn't seem hatful or anything so im chill with that)

xygomorphic44 : I have a theory on why these movies are so bad: the creators are being selfish. They structure the whole movie around building up to the "pivotal message". They try to as to conveniently as possible structure the plot and characters to lead up to their special message, but by doing that they end up making it awkward and it sacrificed the quality of the acting, screenplay and editing. What they should be doing is thinking about who is watching their video and how it's going to be perceived by the view. A good movie is one that properly manipulates the viewers emotions and thoughts and all their camera tricks and editing to convey their message, and the viewer doesn't know that their being manipulated because they're too occupied by the story. I know these people are capable of doing it.

Kelly Greenlee : Bad acting and overly cheesy. Missed opportunity.

Pranav Dhilip : "I would like to start off by establishing that film...is an art form." *cuts to Interstellar. Well played, sir. Well played. *Cue admiring applause

Somali pirate who's actually somali : Does Ben Hur count as a Christian movie??? Cos that was a great movie

Owrange Moosic : I agree with this 100% Usually, whenver I see Christian movies it ends up being: *random charcter that sounds so bland without prper personality* : Oh hey God's with us! Come with me to show you the way! They don't sound human, which leaves me salty most of the time. Though Prince of Egypt is great lol

Anika Potgieter : I just don't get why Christians have to demonize Atheist or people of any other belief. I had a very close friend for 2 years and when I told her that I didn't believe in God (Ive been an atheist my whole life) she never talked to me again. I didn't change just because I didn't belive in God but to her it's like I was out to murder her and her whole family. I don't get it. Can't she just look past our differences in belief and be friends with me because she enjoys my company. Movies that you showed in your video will only worsen people like her. They tell Christians that all non-Christians are awful disgusting people who should go to hell. I like to think I'm an ok human being. I'm not mean and I don't judge people based on their personal belief system. So why hate me then?

Macey Cohn : We watched God’s Not Dead at a mission camp I did my freshman year. I was mildly uncomfortable because ya girl is agnostic. Definitely didn’t convert me

Bombalurina : Christian films are like porn. Bad acting, poorly shot, and shouoldn't be shown to children.

NotTheWheel : What are you talking about? King of Kings? Ten Commandments? Ben Hur? Oh... you meant new age christian movies.. You win some you lose some I suppose.

traykunable : To be fair two wrongs don't make a right but let's not pretend that Hollywood atheists are generous in their depiction of Christians...

Cameron Reed : How bout the movie Ragamuffin

Alexandra Marberry : God's Not Dead is actually a really big reason why I no longer identify as a Christian. I still have faith, and it's a bit complex, but I am not a Christian and want nothing to do with mainstream Christianity. I understand that this movie and others like it do not represent all of Christianity, but they have become so big that the majority of Christians in America actually have conformed to that void of critical thinking whether they like it or not. I watched (or was forced to watch with my family) GND after I had been outside of the perfect Christian bubble for a few years. So it was not the wonderful, self-affirming feel-good movie that the rest of my family saw through their eyes of "Christian persecution in America is real." Instead, it was very clearly propaganda, as I now had Athiest friends and loved ones, and I had seen first hand the many persecutions inflicted on non-Christians and LGBT people by the Christian church itself. In short, to a Christian in a non-diverse bubble, these movies are just a warm and fuzzy chocked full of confirmation bias. For an Athiest, these movies are pure comedy as surely nobody could actually believe stuff like that, right? But as a Christian on the fence, who has learned that non-believers are not the evil baby-eaters I was raised to believe and who has seen loudmouth Christians do everything in their power to destroy the rights, voices, and livelihoods of people who aren't like them, these movies are just another nail in the coffin of our once-perfect childhood religion.

ladydontekno : I'm glad I watched this video. It showed up in my recommended videos and I thought it'd be another boring edgy video about why Christians suck. I'm an atheist but that topic is so tired and hackneyed. This was a pleasant surprise. Your point about how the people who make these movies aren't really filmmakers was one i'd never really considered. I just assumed these movies looked cheap because they were low budget. Thank you for a thoughtful video.

Mara Schoorlemmer : I watched two Christian films during my time in a religion class. The first was The Passion of the Christ. It was interesting with great cinematography and performances from actors. Extremely graphic, though, so don't watch if you have a weak heart, mind, or stomach. The next was Fire Proof, and to this day, it is one of the worst, most cringe-worthy films I have ever seen. The acting was terrible, the overall quality was crap, and the dialogue made me want to either fall asleep or scream and run out of the classroom. The worst part of it all was that my extremely devoutly Christian religion teacher was all over that movie. WE HAD TO ANALYSE THE DAMN THING AS IF IT WAS EVEN REMOTELY COMPARABLE TO CINEMATIC WORKS OF ART. I hated that class.

Phil The Logician : *_J E S U S M A N_*

Once Upon A Blink : Prince of Egypt is good but that’s the only one I know

Sirion : Is there anybody outside the US who is even interested in 'christian movies'?

TurtleKing777 : Bruce Almighty proves that you can make good Christian movies. That aren’t extremely boring, and still get the message across love God and love and the stress of them are really lives and the power he has in those lives Edit: OH AND THE PRINCE OF EYGPT I ALMOST FORGOT THAT ONE! THE MOVIE I MAKE EVEN MY ATHEIST FRIENDS FALL IN LOVE WITH FOR ITS BEAUTY

you can't pronounce my last name : I'm a Christian woman who hangs out with both Christian an atheist people. Both these groups of friends are loving and accepting people. Oh and rather than portraying atheist as incredibly immoral, as Christians we should be showing them the love of Jesus.

TheKagawaLife : I have an atheist friend, and this is why she was the best. Although she wasn’t religious, she still recognized I cared about my religion (Christianity) and did her best to compromise. I did the same in return! We occasionally talked about conflicting beliefs, but it never escalated to a fight, just a discussion. On a certain Friday where you aren’t allowed to eat meat, I was about to take a bite of a burger given to me from a friend. While I chewed, she suddenly and hastily reminded me that I wasn’t supposed to eat meat (and promptly tried to spit it out while cursing silently). The fact that even though she didn’t believe in what I did, but cared enough to know it was important to me and I would want to follow the rules, meant a lot. That is why she’s my friend.

Arizonaphied : There was A LOT of tea in this video haha

gymnopedie : Christian films aren't bad, but Evangelical flicks are terrible. Tarkovsky's Andrei Rublev is rightly regarded as one of the greatest films of all time by secular critics in spite of its overt religious subject matter. But Andrei Rublev isn't simply a Christian movie, but an Orthodox one. As such, it is grounded in 2,000 years of theological reflection stretching from the church fathers to today. The "every man is his own pope" attitude of evangelicalism rejects even theological confessions such as the Book of Concord that seek to provide at least some tradition of thought to provide doctrinal structure. The result is that Evangelicals get sucked into all kinds of bizarre ahistorical heresies like dispensationalism and then spew out trash like the Left Behind series. Shallow theology begets shallow art.

Eagle J. : As an intellectual, the best Christian movies are the Veggie Tales movies.

wannawatchu66 : I noticed how a lot of the Christian movie clips featured in this video had either David A. R. White or Kirk Cameron in them.

Saxon MUSIC : To some who may have been offended by the video. It’s okay if you disagree with his view on Christian films. I didn’t necessarily agree with his views on the God’s Not Dead films BUT as for Christian films generally being in poor quality, yes most of them are. I am not bothered by most Christian films, I enjoy them a good bit BUT there needs to be some reformation. Just because I like something doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be improved. As for the portrayal of non-believers. One thing we should keep in mind is that media and artwork is often a reflection of how the maker sees the world. We can’t be surprised when an atheist producer makes theists look terrible in a film and vice versa, when children do drawings and adults often appear scary, or how drug users and alcoholics are depicted as insane on a TV program. I know people often combat these things by saying “I know lots of [insert group] and they’re nothing like that”, maybe so, but one’s personal experiences does not erase that people like the examples listed above do exist. People do not view the world similarly, so even though some Christians have never had encounters with militant atheists, that doesn’t erase that some people have. Just like some non-believers have had run -ins with extremist Christians and others haven’t. Although art may reflect personal experiences and thoughts, not everyone is going to accept whatever is being put on display because, like I said, everybody sees the world DIFFERENTLY. That’s the way we were created. We were not put on this earth to mirror other people. Contrary to popular belief, God admires independent thinking, that’s why free will exists. Our choices may not line up with what he wants but he’s not going to reach down and chop your head off because you ditched church on Sunday (I thought you could use some humor).

Matthew Bell : Beyond the Mask was so close to being good! From a production standpoint, it's incredible how good it looks for such a small budget. But whoo boy, the writing quality... (in fairness, it was more inconsistent than flat-out bad but...)

Davien McCarty : I would like to mention "Book of Eli" as being an example of a freaking awesome Christian movie. Whether it is considered a "Christian movie" or not, one can not deny its highly religious overtones. Despite this, it was a well written and enjoyable experience and I have seen that movie several times and every time I notice new smaller details I missed the last time. Whether someone is religious or not, I recommend people watch it at least once.

Samuel Piang : I'm not gonna lie, I've been avoiding this video from the recommendation. But seeing it finally today opened my eyes, I thought it was just gonna bash christianity as a whole. But really it's helping it by opening people's eyes. I'm glad I watched it today and I will be watching "Silence" I've never heard of it but it looks amazing! You have a great mindset of how you presented this video and shared your opinions which I strongly agree. I watched all "God's not dead" I felt something was wrong every time a new series was in. What felt wrong was how they presented good and evil themes. I've met a lot of christians and most of us act like the atheists in the video than not. after we're all just humans and we shouldn't depict one godly and the other badly.

Tracie Rusch : Thank you!!!!! I have been saying this for a very long time!! I signed up for a 5 day trial of PureFlix recently. I cancelled it after half an hour. The quality was so bad it was worse than a high school production - bad writing, production, acting, direction, premise, etc. However, the more disturbing part was that it was, to me, the Lifetime network for Christians. Every story is some serious, heart-wrenching drama and everyone's life is this terrible disaster. Yes, we Christians have some very bad things that happen in our lives but not every single day! I have had horrific things happen to me but I have also had some of the most amazing miracles and blessings from God. I don't think of myself as a victim which is why I don't watch Lifetime. Why in the world would I want my Christian programming to be as depressing? I am very hesitant to watch any Christian production and that should NEVER be the case! Also, I agree with your assessment of Christian music: it's boring, EXTREMELY REPETITIVE, and waaay too much like secular music. There is no PRAISE in praise songs anymore. What ever happened to songs like "Our God is an Awesome God" or "I love you Lord and I lift my voice to worship you....."? Thank you for posting this even is no one else pays attention.

Charlie Hatton : I am pretty much Atheist, but I do not behave anything like what you see in those movies. Of course I would find that laughable at best, if not insulting, because I hold a tolerant standpoint towards different faiths. I’m very simple in that I just don’t believe in it personally. Yes, I may have criticism towards the flaws within organized religion, but that doesn’t mean I actually have an issue with having faith, including extremely strong faith. On a side not, I don’t know if it counts as a Christian movie, but I really enjoyed the movie called Saved. To be honest I was raised in a very anti religious household, but I found it to be warm and inviting, showing that you can have faith and be loving and accepting.

bigmack70 : The problem with all this is both bad film making AND bad theology. A mix of wrong, careless, and/or unthinking theology goes into everything from the motivations behind these movies, to their messages, to the thought process of the main audience that tends to like them. Your illustration of the portrayal of atheists in God's not Dead is a great example of this, and it is just one of a multitude. An "Us vs. Them" mentality is definitely prominent in the teachings of Jesus and of the Bible as a whole, but the central message is that all humans OTHER than Jesus (or pre-fall Adam and Eve) are part of the "them" bad guy category, and this message is what makes it hypocritical for Christians to go around demonizing people of different beliefs.