Published On: Fri, Jan 16th, 2015

‘Pass the Light’ attempts to ask Christians to focus on kindness instead of intolerance

Cameron Palatas' Steve attempts to create new focus for Christians in "Pass the Light"

Cameron Palatas’ Steve attempts to create new focus for Christians in “Pass the Light”

2014 may have been the “Year of faith-based films” and Pass the Light is one of the first entries for 2015. With an ensemble cast (Cameron Palatas, Alexandria Deberry, Lawrence Saint-Victor, Jon Gries, Milena Carter) from popular shows, this new film explores the true purpose of Christianity: openness, kindness and positivity versus intolernace and legality.

Palatas (MTV’s Zach Stone is Gonna Be Famous) is an Illinois Christian teen, prayerful, kind and hoping to get on the football team while swooning over the prettiest girl in school. His parents are struggling to keep their marriage together after her father, Pete, loses his job.

The small town is rocked by a new political candidate, Franklin Baumann (Gries of Taken, Lost) who is campaigning with fire and brimstone Christian remarks: exclusion of the sexually immoral, attacks on the homosexual and much, much worse.

Rallying his friends and tapping into God’s love, Steve embarks on the journey to “run for Congress” and present his faith in a more loving and effective manner – Operation Pass the Light is born and “The Force” becomes a force to be reckonded with.

We must move past the concocted premise of the film to fairly evaluate the intent. No teenagers would likely have such easy access to these political candidates, the debates or even the PA system at their school.

No, Pass the Light, aims to quell Christians who are quick to condemn, especially homosexuals. Sadly, Gries’ character is a political version of a Westboro Baptist Church member, instead of a fair representation of Christian community at large.

The high school which ignores his existence (we presume for most of his life) now rally behind him after one act of kindness (it is a cool idea but…)  which was just one of the countless far-fetched steps in Steve’s journey to reform the city and get the opportiunity to give a rousing speech.

Dalphe Grayer plays the best friend, serving up much needed comic relief, and becomes the “audience favorite.” There were no major acting blunders or awards which need to be handed out here, every cast member serves their time adequately to help Palatas’ Steve.

If is noteworthy to mention that Palatas could pass for the younger brother of The Amazing Spider-Man star, Andrew Garfield, and never seemed to be a believable genetic offspring of his on-screen parents.

The film pokes and jabs at the Christian viewers  asking them to be more outreaching to those they wish to condemn and focus on acts of kindness. While none of the faithful will object to the message or this mission statement, it’s the stereortype of an intolerant, homophobic church which may rub folks the wrong way.

Overall Pass the Light receives 2 1/2 stars out of 5

Pass the Light is more of a “call to arms” rather than a film which instigates conviction (like in last year’s The Song). Legalization of gay marriage and widespread acceptance of same-sex relationships across America contrasts the “hateful society” that the film is banking on.

Yes, there are Westboro types out there, but they are marginalized and don’t represent the norm of Christianity or the streets of the USA. Even churches which preach against gay marriage have open doors to gay, so are we talking about tolerance, acceptance or just compromise.

Pass the light movie poster

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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  1. Writer Victor Hawks talks ‘Pass the Light,’ politics and Christianity - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] Read the entire movie review for Pass the Light here […]

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