Monday, January 17, 2011

Movies You Might Have Missed Mondays

Keeping with the theme of life for Right to Life month, I want to remind you about a lovely movie released in 2006 that tells the story of William Wilberforce, England’s passionate abolitionist and humanitarian. The film is called Amazing Grace.

For being a faith-based, historical telling of a subject we hear a lot about from the silver screen, Amazing Grace gives you a lot of reasons not to click it into your Netflix queue.

But if you risk the time and brainpower, you’ll find a worthy surprise.

The character of Wilberforce is an inspiring one, the quintessence of a man put on this earth for a specific and profound purpose. Ioan Gruffodd, Mr. Fantastic from the Fantastic Four pictures, personifies him with an attractive charm and is surrounded by a talented and recognizable cast – not the least of which is Albert Finney in the role of John Newton who was Wilberforce’s friend, a priest, a former slave ship captain, and the author of the best known hymn in history, Amazing Grace.

Unlike other slave trade movies, this is not one that takes you to the bowels of a ship stuffed with human cargo. It’s related through the perspective of English politicians and activists who may or may not have seen the atrocities they were seeking to end as they tried to paint the ugly picture to people who had never seen it. Following Wilberforce’s resume of attempts to change stubborn minds, the movie combines a history lesson’s facts with the drama of the toll this quest put on his body, his mind, and his family.

This is one history movie that holds attention, is acted well, and has just the right tug on the heartstrings. It makes no apology as it states gruesome facts of the slave trade or while it highlights the inspiration that drove Wilberforce to persevere through a tough, exhausting fight to end such terrible, nationally-condoned practices.

Watching Amazing Grace gives the sense of triumph and hope, reminds us that social atrocities still exist but can be overcome by unwavering and conscientious people of action, and gives glory to God for His mercy, inspiration, strength, and deliverance.

And it supports the credo that “all men are created equal” and deserving of life.

Happy Monday, Dry Ground friends!

(photos by


lynnrush said...

Interesting. Love the title. Might have to check this out. Thanks for the review.