A Review of the Movie: God’s Not Dead
by Rob Lundberg
Imagine, if you will, as a student in your freshmen year of college. You’re schedule calls for a humanities class and you pick Philosophy 101. On your first day of class you find out that your professor is an atheist, who likes to tear Christians’ faith apart with the hopes of convincing them that atheism is the best worldview. This is basic background of the new movie due out March 21st entitled, God’s Not Dead.
A week ago today, (Feb. 4) I had an opportunity to attend a free pre-screening of this new movie and I must say that it was really well done for a low budget movie that is needing assistance getting into theaters. More on that later.
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Background Synopsis: Josh Wheaton (played by Shane Harper) is a college freshmen and it is his first semester on campus. As the movie opens, we see that Josh has an aspiring future. He has a beautiful steady girlfriend who he hopes to marry and big plans to go to law school once he graduates from college. On his first day of school, as he is registering for his classes, the student that is assisting him with his registration notices a cross around his neck and suggests another professor or another class. The professor for his philosophy class is a reputation of being a rabid atheist and antagonist toward religion in general and Christianity in particular. Josh cannot change his class schedule because it would mess up his plans for this other classes and make things complicated.
As Josh attends his first day of philosophy class, he meets Professor Radisson (played by Kevin Sorbo). As Radisson opens the first meeting, giving a brief explanation of how “great thinkers” (scientists, ethicists, writers, and philosophers) of the past and present have arrived at atheism or agnosticism, and how “every sophomore” has arrived at the same conclusion. He assigns his class the ultimatum of writing Nietzsche’s famous quote, “God is dead” and signing their name to it to avoid “the part of the class where students get their lowest grades.”
Everyone in the class seems convinced, either out of fear and intimidation or because of belief, writes on their papers just as they are told. . . but Josh dissents and the story unfolds. To the dismay of Wheaton’s classmates, Professor Radisson responds by assigning some extra research and giving Wheaton the task of defending the antithesis and the movie’s title, “God’s not dead,” to the class.