Machine Gun Preacher Movie Review: Gerard Butler's Brilliant

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When a film covers someone’s real life, oftentimes what audiences see onscreen is far from something that can fit into a neat little box. Life is messy. And, few lives have been quite as chaotic as Sam Childers, the subject of Machine Gun Preacher. Gerard Butler portrays Childers and takes us from his drug-addled past, through recovery, finding God and being moved by a sermon at his church by a minister who had just returned from Africa. Next thing Sam knew, he left his wife and daughter behind and went to Africa to help those in need. What he discovered there would not only change his life, but also save the lives of thousands of children in the Sudan, an area ripped apart by civil war and strife.

Gerard Butler and Michelle Monaghan in Machine Gun Preacher
In Machine Gun Preacher, the grotesque violence being committed on mothers, fathers and children in Sudan villages is brought front and center by director Marc Forster in the film's opening moments. Then, he swings his camera back to Pennsylvania and introduces us to Butler capturing the swagger of Childers exiting prison. As Butler begins his journey to salvation and saving onscreen he gives himself an enormous character arc to traverse given the viewer’s knowledge of what Sam Childers does in Africa. He is not nice to anyone including his best friend Donnie (Michael Shannon), his wife (Michelle Monaghan) or his daughter (Madeline Carroll).

It speaks volumes to Butler and his talent that the sweeping story is compelling. When Butler as Childers gets to Africa and sees the horror with his own eyes, a tidal wave of character change is emitted by the actor. All the moments of his life have led to this and now, at this moment, he is the man who must make a difference.

Some have said that Machine Gun Preacher does not know what type of movie it wants to be. Given that this is Childers’ story, and it is well documented, what you have is an addict’s finding sobriety movie. It is a biker film, war flick and action thriller. There are large swaths of a religious-themed film in there as well. That is because that is Childers’ life. Routinely in Africa, his orphanages he built and maintained would come under attack. Always, Childers would grab a machine gun and fight the enemy off. Yes, he was addicted to drugs. Affirmative, he became a preacher. That tapestry is a life, and therefore Machine Gun Preacher is all of those genres of films, wrapped into one look at the life of one man who has done extraordinary things to help humankind.
Gerard Butler Heals in Machine Gun Preacher
There are a few cringe-worthy lines in Machine Gun Preacher -- unfortunately, many have to be uttered by the always awesome Monaghan. In real life, Childers' orphanages flourished and saved thousands of lives. After watching the film, one wonders how they could have survived without his presence. But, that is little concern when it’s within the confines of a film that puts the spotlight on the age-old question: What can one person do? Apparently, help move heaven and earth.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (13 Votes)
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This is getting a bit more sicbejtuve, but I much prefer the Zune Marketplace. The interface is colorful, has more flair, and some cool features like Mixview' that let you quickly see related albums, songs, or other users related to what you're listening to. Clicking on one of those will center on that item, and another set of neighbors will come into view, allowing you to navigate around exploring by similar artists, songs, or users. Speaking of users, the Zune Social is also great fun, letting you find others with shared tastes and becoming friends with them. You then can listen to a playlist created based on an amalgamation of what all your friends are listening to, which is also enjoyable. Those concerned with privacy will be relieved to know you can prevent the public from seeing your personal listening habits if you so choose.

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This is getting a bit more sicbejtuve, but I much prefer the Zune Marketplace. The interface is colorful, has more flair, and some cool features like Mixview' that let you quickly see related albums, songs, or other users related to what you're listening to. Clicking on one of those will center on that item, and another set of neighbors will come into view, allowing you to navigate around exploring by similar artists, songs, or users. Speaking of users, the Zune Social is also great fun, letting you find others with shared tastes and becoming friends with them. You then can listen to a playlist created based on an amalgamation of what all your friends are listening to, which is also enjoyable. Those concerned with privacy will be relieved to know you can prevent the public from seeing your personal listening habits if you so choose.

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I am interested in readnig this myself. I heard about him at the Urbana Missionary Conference, but only a passing description of what he is doing. He is certainly controversial. I will have to check him out and get back with you. Greetings and blessings from Calvary Chapel in Japan!

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I am interested in readnig this myself. I heard about him at the Urbana Missionary Conference, but only a passing description of what he is doing. He is certainly controversial. I will have to check him out and get back with you. Greetings and blessings from Calvary Chapel in Japan!

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Machine Gun Preacher movie is one of the movies I recommend all people to watch. -Rudyanto Lay

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Sounds like a good one.

Machine Gun Preacher Quotes

You can't keep going the way you've been going.

Lynn Childers

I've done a lot of things that I ain't proud of. I hurt a lot of people.

Sam Childers

Machine Gun Preacher Review

When a film covers someone’s real life, oftentimes what audiences see onscreen is far from something that can fit into a neat little box....

Read Review Editor Rating
  • 4.0 / 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
User Rating

Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (13 Votes)

Machine Gun Preacher Trailer

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