A Preview of Faith-Based Films Coming to Theaters in 2017

The last few years have seen an unprecedented number of faith-based films shining their light and touching lives in movie theaters nationwide. Thankfully, this trend will continue in 2017 with an exciting lineup of films already scheduled and additional films released later in the year. These movies inspire and encourage believers, providing a special opportunity for an uplifting experience for our families. And since many people who are hesitant to come to church might accept an invitation to see a movie, these films often help reach the unchurched. The more that individual believers and churches help support these films in theaters by their prayers, spreading the word and purchasing tickets (especially for opening weekend), the greater the reach of these movies. A well-made, faith-based film is much like a carefully-crafted, illustrated sermon; it will grab people’s attention and plant seeds of faith and hope in their hearts. And most of the films from previous years continue to impact lives through DVD and streaming as well as special church-licensed showings.

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2017 Releases

Below is a list of the movies currently scheduled to open in 2017. Each film is unique and will impact people in a different way. Be sure to visit the movie websites for trailers, theater listings and other information and “LIKE” their Facebook pages to receive updates. These films vary in quality, amount of spiritual content and number of theaters, so check my special movie Facebook page (LightInDarkPlace) for the latest news. Some films are regular releases and will play one or more weeks in theaters while others are one-night only events. If available, the start date for each film and the dates for one-night only events have been given below. Release dates are subject to change, and additional films will be added later. If you have a strong interest in a particular film, you can even help bring that film to your community.

 

“The Bowden Dynasty” (1/8/17 one-night only) Documentary about former FSU football Coach Bobby Bowden. A story of faith, family, and of course, football. bowdendynasty.com

 

silence-featured“Silence” (1/13/17) Andrew Garfield (“Hacksaw Ridge”) stars in this film about two 17th century Jesuit priests facing violence and persecution in Japan. silencemovie.com

 

“The Resurrection of Gavin Stone” (1/20/17) A messed up, former child TV star (Bret Dalton, “Agents of Shield”) fakes being a believer to get a part in a Holiday Pageant, but then his life is transformed by God. resurrectionofgavinstonemovie.com

 

“God Bless the Broken Road” (2/10/17) A young, widowed mother struggles to raise her young daughter. This movie combines faith, country music and stock car racing while paying tribute to those who serve in the United States Military. godblessthebrokenroad.com

 

“Is Genesis History?” (2/28/17 one-night only) Documentary featuring scientists and scholars looking at the world and explaining how it intersects with the history recorded in Genesis. Hosted by Dr. Del Tackett, creator of “The Truth Project.” isgenesishistory.com

 

“The Shack” (3/3/17) A grieving man receives a mysterious, personal invitation to meet with God at a place called “The Shack.” Based on the controversial best-selling book, “The Shack” is a moving story, but some have raised concerns regarding its inaccuracies in comparison to scripture. Cast includes Sam Worthington, Octavia Spencer and Tim McGraw. theshack.movie

 

facing-darkness“Facing Darkness” (3/30/17 one-night only) True story of Samaritan’s Purse doctors applying faith, determination and prayer during the West African Ebola pandemic. facingdarknessmovie.com

 

“Mully” (6/8/17 one-night only) Rags-to-riches story of Charles Mully, whose rise from orphaned poverty in Kenya leads him on a journey of selflessness. mullymovie.com

 

“The Star” (11/10/17) Animated film about a small but brave donkey and his animal friends who become the unsung heroes of the first Christmas. thestarmovie.com

 

“The Case for Christ” (date pending) Based on the true story of Lee Strobel, an atheist, investigative journalist who is transformed as he tries to disprove the newfound Christian faith of his wife. thecaseforchristmovie.com

 

“Same Kind of Different as Me” (date pending) Unforgettable true story about an international art dealer who befriends a homeless man in order to save his struggling marriage. With Renée Zellweger, Djimon Hounsou, Jon Voight and Greg Kinnear. samekindofdifferentasmemovie.com

 

“Power of the Air” (date pending) Dave Christiano film about a missionary from Africa sharing how the enemy uses Hollywood to deceive people. With Michael Gross (“Family Ties”) and Patty Duke. fiveandtwopictures.com

 

“Grace Wins” (date pending) Story of four teenage high school seniors and the life altering decisions that they have to make. gracewinsthemovie.com

 

“Let There be Light” (date pending) An atheist experiencing a near-death experience converts to Christianity. Starring Kevin Sorbo (“God’s Not Dead”). Produced by Sean Hannity. facebook.com/Lettherebelightthemovie

 

“An Interview with God” (date pending) A journalist whose life is falling apart is offered an interview with someone who claims to be God. What would you ask? aninterviewwithgod.com

 

“Champion” (date pending) In the world of dirt track racing, a single mistake forever changes the lives of two men. One fights for his family, the other fights to forgive. With Robert Amaya (“Courageous”) and Andrew Chenney (“Beyond the Mask”). championthemovie.com

 

“All Saints” (date pending) Based on true story of a salesman-turned-pastor, a tiny church he was ordered to shut down, and a group of refugees from Southeast Asia, who together risked everything to plant seeds for the future. facebook.com/allsaintsmovie

 

“A Salted Christmas” (date pending) Inspirational comedy filmed in South Florida highlighting adoption and foster parenting told through a day in the life of a family just prior to Christmas. manifestpictures.com

 

Help these films touch more lives

If each of us does our part, these films can be used to impact many lives in our communities and in the world.

Here are some ways you can help.

  1. Pray! Successful ministry needs effective prayer (and even fasting) behind the scenes and it is the same with these movies.
  2. Help spread the word via social media, fliers, posters, church bulletins, etc., since the secular media normally ignores these movies.
  3. See the film on opening weekend and try to organize a group (large or small) to attend. It does not matter to the theater how good a movie is; if enough people do not see it opening weekend, the theater will not keep it for the next weekend. Feel free to contact me directly if you would like information about obtaining group discount tickets or how you can become a movie contact person for your church or ministry.
  4. Purchase tickets as early as possible. The simple act of planning ahead is far more important than people realize. Successful advanced ticket purchases can expand a film’s release to additional theaters and larger auditoriums.

To receive notices about upcoming releases, leaders advanced screenings, group discount tickets and more, email your contact info to Stan at fireproof@bellsouth.net to be added to a Christian movie email list. And for up-to-date information on these films, “LIKE” Stan’s Christian movie Facebook page (facebook.com/LightinDarkPlace) and Twitter @LightDarkPlace.

 

Stanley Goldenberg has been involved in grassroots promotion of Christian films for over 10 years. He hosts a regular “Movie Connection” show on LIFE-FM (90.9 FM) in Miami. He is also a federal hurricane research meteorologist who has published scientific articles and appeared in TV hurricane specials.

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12 Responses to “A Preview of Faith-Based Films Coming to Theaters in 2017”

  1. Another new Faith base movie coming to theaters this March 2017 entitled VICTOR- A powerful true story period peice taking place in Brooklyn NY,1950s. Greg Wilkerson ( an award winning producer and son of David Wilkerson of the Cross and the Switchblade book) has create this sincere evangelical story which has already won awards and literly changed the lives of many families who delt with kids in gangs/ drugs and other realistic problems.

    Reply
    • Stanley Goldenberg

      Thanks for the info! I will check into it. I usually do an update article in mid-Summer since new films are added, dates change, etc BTW — I pray someone will do a remake of CROSS AND THE SWITCHBLADE! The original is excellent but very dated and the story deserves to be told to a new generation!

      Reply
    • I just found out about this film, and it looks great! And it was released in theaters yesterday! What ever happened to marketing?

      Reply
      • Stanley Goldenberg

        Sadly, many excellent faith-based films come and go without the word getting out enough (“marketing”) to really reach people with the message in the theaters. That is why I emphasize doing all we can to spread the word about these films, since in general, marketing finances for most of these films are slim. That is why I have a Christian movie Facebook page
        https://www.facebook.com/LightInDarkPlace/
        (+ the Good News articles, emails, tweets and more) to help get the word out on these films. Note that the April edition of Good News will feature an updated list of films for the remainder of the year.

        Reply
  2. tim zickafoos

    Not sure why some are ‘one night only’ and not in general full release nationally? Would be nice for more ‘details’ as to content, and if the movie is lose, close or exact to biblical principles or content?

    Reply
    • Stanley Goldenberg

      Tim — Tahnk you for your questions. There are many nuances and issues when it comes to distributing any film. It is a lot cheaper (and less risky) to do a one-night event (which sometimes have 1-2 encore showings if they do well). And these are the norm for documentary features. We will be having an April movie update and some of this is mentioned in that article. Most of the one-nighters are shown nationally (in select theaters). Many of the Christain films do not have the bog budgets of hollywood films so the releases are more restricted.
      As for content — with so many films, there is only so much info I can include about each movie in the article. 1) That is why I direct people to my Christian movie Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LightInDarkPlace where I have room to post more info. 2) Also, I always include the official movie website where there is lots more info. 3) Good News tries to post a complete review on many of the films. 4) An excellent source of detailed reviews is available at pluggedin.com — but these sometimes are not posted until the movie is in theaters. 5) Pastors and leaders can sometimes see advanced screenings of these films. 6) Feel fee ego contact me about specific films. I usually get to screen most of them ahead of time.
      I hope these comments answer some of your concerns.

      Reply

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