Film Review by Kam Williams
Headline: Reformed Gangsta Seeks Redemption in Modern Morality Play
Brendan King (Crawford Wilson), a kid raised in the foster care system, was sent away at the age of 15 after being caught dealing drugs and running guns as a member of a notorious gang known as Avenue D. Upon parole a few years later, the juvenile offender was released to the custody of Vanessa (Lynn Whitfield) and Mike Stubbs (James McDaniel), a couple still struggling with the loss of their police officer son in a senseless act of violence while he was on duty.
The emotionally-wounded foster parents see taking Brendan in as an opportunity to not only help rehabilitate an at-risk youth but to perhaps restore their faith in humanity, too. Because the boy became Born Again behind bars, the prospects for his future are very bright indeed, despite a checkered past marked by 18 different foster home placements, 9 felony and 11 misdemeanor arrests, and 4 convictions.
After all, he’s now settling into a new school, Northside High, and living in a relatively-upscale suburban enclave located a safe distance from the bad influences rampant around the ‘hood. Furthermore, to keep Brendan on the straight and narrow, the Stubbs give him a curfew, find him a part-time job, and even encourage him to join The Seekers, a Christian community service group for teenagers.
Everything goes well until the fateful day he rescues a classmate from a car wreck. Natalie (Kayla Compton), a girl most likely-type, happens to be president of the school’s student council. However, she ends up in trouble when the police find drugs in the car at the scene of the accident.
But Brendan’s role as the hero lands him in the limelight, which has the unfortunate side effect of notifying his former partners in crime of his present whereabouts. Soon, they show up looking for the fruit of the valuable contraband he’d hidden before being sent up the river, and they threaten to put a hurtin’ on him if he doesn’t deliver or rejoin their ranks.
Will Brendan revert to his old outlaw ways? Or will the convert put his trust in the Lord and avoid temptation this time around? Thus unfolds King’s Faith, a very relevant morality play written and directed by Nicholas DiBella.
Carefully crafted with Evangelicals in mind, this modern parable will certainly resonate with the faith-based demographic as well as secular individuals interested in an entertaining, wholesome family flick with a sobering message. The cinematic equivalent of a thought-provoking Bible study likely to ignite further discussion about a variety of real-life challenges folks face today.
Very Good (3 stars)
Rated PG-13 for violence, drug use and mature themes
Running time: 107 minutes
Distributor: Faith Street Film Partners
To see a trailer for King's Faith, visit: http://vimeo.com/62743442