UNION — Thanks to Union Square Cinemas, local audiences will have the opportunity to view a sneak preview of the new film “Son of God” before it officially opens in theaters on Friday.
The film “Son of God” was produced by husband and wife Mark Burnett (Survivor, The Voice, The Apprentice) and Roma Downey (Touched by an Angel, The Bible mini-series), directed by Christopher Spencer, and written by Richard Bedser, Christopher Spencer, Colin Swash and Nic Young. The film promises to give the larger-than-life story of The New Testament a larger-than-life treatment.
The movie’s website — www.sonofgodmovie.com — says the story will be told with the scope and scale of an action epic, featuring powerful performances, exotic locales, dazzling visual effects and a rich orchestral score from Oscar winner Hans Zimmer. Portugese actor Diogo Morgado portrays Jesus as the film spans from his humble birth through his teachings, crucifixion and ultimate resurrection. This marks the first motion picture about Jesus’ life since “Passion of the Christ,” which was released 10 years ago.
Morgado will be joined by a large cast, including Roma Downey, who is best known for her role as “Monica” in the series “Touched by an Angel”; Amber Rose Revah, who is known for roles in “From Paris with Love” and “The Devil’s Double”; Louise Delamere, who starred in “Judge Dredd” and “No Angels”; and Darwin Shaw, who starred in “John Carter,” “Prince of Persia,” and “Casino Royale”; among numerous others.
Before the film opens in theaters on Friday, Union Square Cinemas will host a special premiere at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27. Advance tickets are available for $7 each at Grace United Methodist Church, Gene’s Hairstyling, and Gault Small Engine Sales and Service, located on SC 18 in Union.
The Rev. David Bauknight, Pastor of Grace United Methodist Church, will use the movie as a backdrop for a four-part sermon series. The sermons will be titled “The Son of Man” (March 2), “The Sinner’s Friend” (March 9), “The Anointed One” (March 16), and “The Coming King” (March 23). Bauknight said he thinks the movie will get people to re-think some things.
“Sometimes, I think we get complacent,” Bauknight said. “I think about how our lives go and how many times we find ourselves in a situation where we say, ‘Oh, Lord, help me out of this.’”
Bauknight said he hopes the movie will get people thinking about the truth of who Jesus Christ really is. He said some people view God as what some have called a “Burger King God,” meaning people think they can “have it your way.” He said others see God as a “rabbit’s foot God” they can rub for good luck. Bauknight said it’s important to have a personal relationship with God to know what He wants.
“The movie can help solidify what God is asking out of us,” Bauknight said. “Sooner or later, we have to turn to obedience to Him instead of asking for what we want.”
Bauknight shared notes for the sermons, which were centered around John 14:11-14:
“Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.”
Grace UMC will also hold a four-week Bible study using the movie “The Son of God” as a backdrop. The Bible study will be taught by Sunday School teacher Bob Love, and the four classes will be “The Savior of the World,” “The Son of God,” “Man of Sorrows,” and “Lamb of God.”
Each lesson will begin with a DVD excerpt from the movie, followed by guided discussion.
“I have previewed the materials, and I am very excited about presenting them,” Love said. “I am looking forward to the movie.”
The Rev. Bauknight’s wife, Sherry Bauknight, said she has found the trailers for the film intriguing, and she pointed out that it is important for Christians to support films like this. She also said Union Square Cinemas’ George Bruce deserves a huge “thank you” for taking a leap of faith and arranging for the premiere without knowing what the attendance would be. Sherry said she hopes people in the community will be encouraged to support the film, and Union Square Cinemas itself.
“It’s a good thing for the community,” she said.
Derik Vanderford can be reached at 864-427-1234, Ext. 29.