Thursday, October 31, 2013

I'm in Love with A Church Girl (Movie Review)

The best thing, worst thing, and main thing about the Christian movie "I'm in Love with a Church Girl" in about the time it takes to watch the trailer.



 In the opening credits of this movie “God” is listed as executive producer. Right, like an EP would ever only ask for 10 percent.
“I’m in Love with a Church Girl” is a real life story adapted for the screen as the brainchild of Israel Houghton and Galley Molina. It stars Jeff Atkins (better known as Ja Rule) as a bad boy made good by finding Jesus through finding the girl of his dreams, which echos Molina’s trials and conversion. The movie is also said to “star” actors Stephen Baldwin, Michael Madsen, and Vincent Pastore, as well as Christian artists T-Bone and Toby Mac. But really the only one of those that is even on the screen for more than a cameo is Stephen Baldwin and he doesn’t really do much of anything with his extra time anyway. In fact, I didn’t find much of anybody doing anything worth paying attention to in this movie. Yeah, this is an awful film.
I guess since I have to pick a best thing, I’ll go with Ja Rule. He doesn’t totally make a fool of himself as an actor, and adds a touch of believability in an otherwise dismal cast. Of course it may just be that everyone around him is so bad that he can’t help but look adequate, but whatever the case I cringed the least when he was delivering his lines. So take that for what its worth.
But unfortunately acting wasn’t the only thing that was cringeworthy about Church Girl. Usually it’s not much of a surprise that acting and production aren’t up to standard in these kinds of movies, so I’m usually willing to cut a little slack, but this movie missed the mark on even more than that. First of all the story was cookie cutter and completely boring. Seriously, who thought this tale was interesting enough to make a movie about? There’s no big moment, no conflict, and nothing to root for. Want to hear the plot? I apologize if this is a spoiler but here it is, he sells drugs, he falls in love with a church girl, he stops selling drugs. Sorry to ruin the suspense. Not only that but the faith stuff in this is simply too preachy (and yes they did list God as executive producer). Look, even Jesus knew to give messages in the form of interesting stories not just finger wagging words. OH, and I have to mention this. Christian rapper T-Bone plays one of the best friends and partners of this drug lord, who later in the film finds himself in a Christian bookstore buying a T-BONE CD! Literally, they even make a big deal out of it. I mean, The guy on the cover clearly looks like your right hand man, and you don’t even mention it?! Look, if you can’t take your own movie seriously, don’t expect me too either.
Point being, there just isn’t much good to say about “I’m in Love with a Church Girl”. Though Ja Rule doesn’t give an awful performance, everyone else does and when you add that to lousy production, a preachy presentation, and a boring story with no momentum it barely escapes with a D-.
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