If you haven't seen Fireproof yet and you're married, put it at the top of your date-night list. You have a date-night list, right? If not, go see the movie anyway. You'll get the equivalent of a marriage course in a two-hour story.
If you haven't heard, Fireproof has been storming across America, surprising many with its ticket sales. Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia has issued three movies now. The first, Flywheel, was a small-budget film that was followed by Facing the Giants. Giants did surprisingly well in the theaters, providing some of the capital for a bigger-budget ($500,000) production this time in Fireproof.
But co-producers Stephen and Alex Kendrick see Fireproof as a ministry, just like the earlier movies. And this one is about strengthening a marriage.
Professional actor Kirk Cameron plays Caleb, a firefighter with a marriage about to end. His father begs him to try a series of activities, laid out in a book The Love Dare, in a last-ditch attempt to save his marriage.
Cameron, a committed Christian, is the only professional actor in the movie, although some surprisingly good performances are given, especially by Erin Bethea who plays Caleb's wife, Catherine.
Fireproof is definitely a movie to see.
A few things I didn't care for:
- The screenplay needed one more edit. It is rather uneven, with some very good dialogue and imagery laid against some cliched-laden conversations.
- A movie should show but we had to sit through some sermons by Caleb's father. The father gave a strong gospel pitch - which was good - but there was a lot of telling rather than showing in that. I can imagine ways of showing the power of the cross.
- I was slightly bugged by the fact that The Love Dare was written by the Kendricks. There's the hint of self-promotion in that.
But the value in Fireproof is far greater than the shortcomings. See it soon with your spouse and bring along some tissues. It's an emotional, moving voyage through the dying throes of a marriage.