Movie Mom

Movie Mom


The Christmas Candle

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild thematic elements
Profanity:None
Nudity/Sex:Out of wedlock pregnancy
Alcohol/Drugs:None
Violence/Scariness:Mild peril, sad stories, tense confrontations
Diversity Issues:None
Movie Release Date:November 22, 2013

Former Presidential candidate Rick Santorum is now in the faith-based movie business and his first film is based on christmascandleThe Christmas Candle by Max Lucado.

Just before the holidays, a progressive young clergyman named David (Hans Matheson) takes over a church in a small village called Gladbury in late 19th century England.  The town is known for its miracle — every 25 years an angel appears to touch one of the candle maker’s Christmas candles.  Whoever lights that candle receives a miracle.  This year, there is tremendous anticipation and there are many in the town who want the miracle for themselves, including the candle maker and his wife.  David encourages his parishioners not to wait for a miracle but to help each other through kindness, generosity, humility, and love.  And soon the village creates a more connected community and a more welcoming environment.

The evident sincerity of the production is appealing but it cannot disguise a not-ready-for-prime-time amateurish quality in the superficiality of the writing and pedestrian direction.  It is awkward and uneven, but it is also a little less sugary than most faith-based family fare.  Lesley Manville gives a subtle and touching performance that transcends the clunky dialogue and over-constructed plot and Susan Boyle looks very natural in 19th century garb and sings beautifully.  The emphasis on helping others rather than wishing for a selfish miracle is most welcome, though disappointingly undercut in the final half hour.

Parents should know that there are some mature themes, including an out of wedlock pregnancy and family estrangement.

Family discussion:  What would you wish for?  Who can you help?

If you like this, try: “Christmas with a Capital C”



  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment TRINITY

    so in other words 11 years of praying , seeing Miracles happen to bring this Movie to pass ,Gods perfect Timing , Miracles that have come forth just from the PRE-RELEASES of the Movie , should never have come to pass, because this movie should never have been made in the First place ?
    Is that what you are implying?
    Otherwise what exactly ARE you saying ?And who exactly are you trying to get your “thoughts” to?
    Whom are you hoping will listen and what exactly would you prefer them to do instead ?
    Or are you merely just interested in getting attention ??
    Please think about what you do before you spout off…and whats Jesus’s response to this ?
    There’s enough stabbing and gutting from the Secular Critics aimed to kill this completely or patronize and pat on the head because they hate Christianity to begin with , do you become just like them ???

    • Nell Minow

      Trinity, it is impossible for me to imagine what it is in my review that could have led you to make these accusations. The only thing that makes sense to me in your comments is your asking what I was saying as it is clear you did not pay attention to what I said. In what way did I suggest that this movie should not have been made? Just as with any other movie review, I tried to explain to those who are considering buying a ticket what I thought about the movie’s strengths and weaknesses. I am glad to see faith-based and uplifting films made available, but it is also fair to expect them to meet the same standards of storytelling, artistry, and quality I would expect from any film, and that audiences are entitled to expect for the time and money they are asked to spend.

      I am always sorry to see someone who purports to represent Christianity show so little grace and generosity. If you want to persuade others of your position — and of the benefits of following the path of righteousness — you will do better to express your views more thoughtfully. In particular, if you have actually seen the film, you might share your thoughts on what you liked about it. I’d be glad to hear that from you, and assure you I will respond more respectfully than you did.

Previous Posts

Does PG-13 Mean Anything Anymore?
The Washington Post has an article about a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics, "Parental Desensitization to Violence and Sex in Movies," with some disturbing conclusions about parents' ability to make good decisions about the impact some media may have on their children. This is not

posted 8:00:58am Oct. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Is E-Reading to Kids the Same as Analog Reading?
The New York Times asks, Is E-Reading to Your Toddler Story Time, or Simply Screen Time? In a 2013 study, researchers found that children ages 3 to 5 whose parents read to them from an electronic book had lower reading comprehension than children whose parents used traditional books. Part of th

posted 8:00:40am Oct. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Todd and Jedd Wider about the Bullying Documentary "Mentor"
Producers Todd and Jedd Wider generously took time to answer my questions about their documentary, "Mentor," the story of two teenagers who committed suicide following relentless bullying. The film, which received Honorable Mention for Best Documentary Feature at the 2014 Woodstock Film Festival th

posted 3:56:57pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Clip: Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ApzHJhZz2JQ" frameborder="0"] The latest in Disney's animated Tinkerbell series adds Ginnifer Goodwin to the cast. Coming in March of 2015, it explores the ancient myth of a mysterious creature whose distant roar sparks the curiosity

posted 1:23:59pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: "Avatar" Villain Stephen Lang on Playing a Good Guy Coach in "23 Blast"
Stephen Lang is best known for playing the villain in "Avatar." But in "23 Blast," based on the real-life story of Travis Freeman, a high school football player who lost his vision but stayed on the team, Lang plays a good guy, the coach who encouraged and supported him. I talked to Lang about actin

posted 5:56:30am Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.