In Brief: A fatally-flawed, faith-based movie about a miracle involving a child with a fatal illness.
Miracles from Heaven has more in common with a Hallmark channel movie than a mainstream feature.
Jennifer Garner (Dallas Buyers Club) stars and the film is based on Christy Beam’s book. Her daughter Anna contracts a fatal intestinal disorder. Beam refuses to accept the death sentence and the family spends a fortune on a cure. All of this tests the Christian family’s faith and asks — but doesn’t answer — the question of why God would allow that to happen to a little girl. At the point where the girl’s time is up, she climbs a dead tree that looks more like it belongs in a horror movie than one that is faith-based, falls into its hollow center and when she emerges, Anna is cured and gives credit for her healing to God.
Miracles from Heaven is produced by T.D. Jakes who produces faith-based and feel-good flicks. He’s the pastor of the 30,000 member The Potter’s House. His movies tend to attract Christians and this one will pack them in. This movie contends its Christian but doesn’t spend a whole lot of time talking about Jesus who is the foundation of the faith. Maybe I’m being picky but you’d think there’d be a bit more about the Savior of the world in there. However, it won’t likely offend the faithful or someone with no faith or belief at all.
For the discerning moviegoer, it’s pablum, not all that uplifting and — worse — it’s 20-minutes too long.
Director: Patricia Riggen
Stars: Jennifer Garner, Martin Henderson, Kylie Rogers, Queen Latifah, John Carol Lynch, Eugenio Derbez, Bruce Altman
Rated PG for mature themes. Probably better suited for the Hallmark channel than the silver screen. No miracles here other than it gets a 1 on the Average Joe 0 to 5 rating scale instead of the zero it deserves.
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5 to 4 1/2: Must see on the big screen.
4 to 3 1/2: Good film, see it if it’s your type of movie.
3 to 2 1/2: Wait until it comes out on DVD.
2 to 1: Don’t bother.
0:Speaks for itself.
Gary Wolcott has been a movie consultant for KXL since 2014. A lifelong fan of film, he’s been a film critic in radio, television and newspaper for 25-years. Wolcott catches a couple of hundred movies a year and he sees a great many of them so you don’t have to.
Got a movie suggestion or comment? Email him!