Review by Adam Donato
There’s a tendency for Christian flicks to fit into their own genre and not find widespread appeal. A movie getting a wide release with the word Jesus in the title is quite the bet, especially when it’s a comedy. Jesus Revolution attempts to appeal to young and old with the story of the rise of Calvary Chapel churches. Former television star Kelsey Grammer and the directors of American Underdog headline Jesus Revolution. The film will try to find success at the box office in the wake of Quantumania’s second weekend and will face off head to head with Cocaine Bear, which is the opposite of Jesus Revolution. Does this Jesus movie have the quality to get non-Christians in the theater?
Jesus Revolution tackles the youth takeover of Christianity. The target audience is sure to be old people and it would do some good as it’s fraught with themes about acceptance and tolerance. It’s interesting to see movies aimed at older audiences that touch on issues sensitive to that community. That being said, this is a period piece so a lot of the older demographic experienced this movement in real time, but now they are the old heads. Obviously the movie is about religion so it’s going to be at the forefront, but it focuses on the peace and love aspect of Christianity that everyone can get down with. Jesus Revolution doesn’t necessarily appeal to people who don’t accept Jesus Christ as their lord and savior, but if they were forced to watch this movie, they would have a good enough time.
Kelsey Grammer is a joy on screen always. His role as a pastor gives ample opportunities for him to have juicy monologue scenes. His transition from grumpy old head to spearheading the youth movement in Christianity is rushed, but the movie isn’t really about whether or not he will be changed. His relationship with Lonnie Frisbee is delightful. Frisbee is actually played by Jonathan Roumie, who played Jesus in The Chosen TV series. It’s an instantly funny match up having a guy who looks identical to the image of Jesus Christ the western world has paired up with a jaded man of God. Roumie is also given ample acting opportunities with his speeches in this movie as well. As the movie goes on, their relationship feels like the B story to Joel Courtney’s character. Remember the kid from Super 8? In Jesus Revolution he plays a young man going down a bad path before finding his place and future in the church. This is where we get the main romantic storyline of the movie. This character definitely fleshes out the runtime, but is not as compelling as Grammer and Roumie’s storyline.
There’s nothing to write home about, but Jesus Revolution is an enjoyable viewing experience. The religious crowd will enjoy this whether they’re old or young. Non religious people were not going to see this movie anyways. The trailer sums up the most interesting aspects, which is the inciting incident. Grammer and Roumie have standout performances and the vibe is consistently good. If you’re going to the theater intoxicated this weekend, be sure to check out Cocaine Bear, but if you’re high on life, then have a feel-good time with Jesus Revolution.
Jesus Revolution hits theaters on February 24.