Five Mainstream Films Releasing Fall 2019 That Highlight Christian Faith Elements

Empty cinema hall with red seats and big wide screen

The success of faith-based films in recent years has led to a resurgence of Christian movies being made in Hollywood and now some mainstream films are also including faith elements in their content. 

In 2018, the film “I Can Only Imagine” based on the life story of Christian singer Bart Millard brought in $17.1 million domestically during its opening weekend, and over $83 million overall, surpassing expectations.

Several films being released this fall also feature the religious faith of the characters and real-life individuals the actors are portraying.

Here’s a list of five faith-based movies coming this fall.

“Harriet” 

Release Date: Nov. 1

A biopic based on the historic mission of Harriet Tubman will give viewers a glimpse into the faith-led mission of the iconic abolitionist.

“Harriet” will take viewers on a ride through history showcasing how Tubman legendarily led slaves to freedom in America via the Underground Railroad in the mid-1800s.

Playing the lead is actress Cynthia Erivo, who recently said she depended on prayer and gospel music to help her bring Tubman’s Christian convictions and motivations to the film.

“God don’t mean people to own people,” Tubman says in the film. “I will give every last drop of blood in my veins until this monster called slavery is dead.”

The film illustrates how Tubman made it to safety multiple times by receiving direction from the Holy Spirit in visions and dreams.

“As the ‘Moses’ of her time and first woman to lead an armed expedition in war, ‘Harriet’ proves to be the perfect example of a fearless, faithful leader that all people of faith can relate to and admire,” the film studio said in a statement shared with The Christian Post.

“Harriet” also features singer and actress Janelle Monáe, playing the role of one of Tubman’s mentors. Leslie Odom Jr., Jennifer Nettles and Joe Alwyn are also part of the cast.

Directed by Kasi Lemmons (“Luke Cage”) and written by Gregory Allen Howard (“Remember the Titans,” “Ali”), the Focus Features film shows how the political activist singlehandedly rescued more than 70 slaves on 19 expeditions.

The film will be in theaters nationwide on Nov. 1.

“Waves”

Release Date: Nov. 15

Starring Sterling K. Brown, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Taylor Russell and Lucas Hedges, “Waves” follows an upper-class Florida family that traces the “epic emotional journey of a suburban African-American family — led by a well-intentioned but domineering father — as they navigate love, forgiveness and coming together in the aftermath of a loss,” the film’s synopsis says.

The trailer begins with a scene showing the family attending a church service in which the minister is heard reading the Bible verse 1 Corinthian 13: “Love is patient, love is kind, love is not rude it doesn’t boast, love also forgets wrong.”

As the clip progresses, the family experiences a tragedy and they are left to put the pieces of their lives back together.

“Lord knows I’ve held on to way too much hate in my life,” Brown says in the film.

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, acclaimed director and writer Trey Edward Shults says, “Waves” is a traumatic story about the human capacity for compassion and growth even in the darkest of times.

“All of my movies have gone to a dark place, but this one I think pushes past that and goes to a new area and hopefully gets you on the other side by the end,” Shults said.

“Waves” will  be released by A24, the studio behind Oscar-winning film “Moonlight.”

The film will be in theaters nationwide Nov. 15. 

“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”

Release Date: Nov. 22

“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” starring Tom Hanks highlights the Christian faith that beloved TV personality Fred Rogers grounded his beliefs and hit show on.

“Do you know what that means, to forgive?” Hanks, portraying Mr. Rogers, asks in a newly released preview of the film titled, “The Heart of the Story.”

“It’s a decision we make to release a person from the feelings of anger we have toward them,” he said.

The film is based on an article written by journalist Tom Junod who formed a friendship with Rogers while writing a profile on his life and work. The movie details how their friendship evolved after their first encounter.

Rogers worked in television for more than 30 years after graduating college. The only breaks he took from working in television were times he devoted to his Christian faith. The TV pioneer attended Pittsburgh Theological Seminary where he was ordained as a Presbyterian minister in 1963.

“When I think of Fred, I often think of him in terms of what he did every morning, which was pray and think of the people he needed to pray for and write to those people,” the real-life Junod is heard saying of Rogers in the clip.

In the preview, Rogers is seen kneeling at his bedside reading the Bible.

“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” will debut in theaters nationwide on Nov. 22.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Jeannie Law