Movie Review: Confessions of a Prodigal Son

The following is a sponsored movie review.

Confessions of a Prodigal Son produced by Mark Mangrum is a modern twist of the parable from the Bible. My family watched this movie together through an online viewing link.

Parents, preview it and use your own judgement before watching with young children. Had I previewed it before we all watched it together, I probably wouldn't have included my son as it was portrayed as a story progressing, and right and wrong choices weren't always clearly delineated. Circumstances portrayed were also beyond his age experiences and understanding. I don't recommend it for young audiences. 

The movie revolves around a college boy who decides he no longer wants to be accountable to his parents but still feels entitled to his college fund. Following the Biblical parable of the prodigal son, he wastes his inheritance and his life until he finally returns home broken. Unlike the Biblical account, this version has a modern setting and there is no brother as he is welcomed back home by his parents. There are also friends he turns to throughout the movie, and their influence and support wavers from completely wrong to surprisingly helpful.

My girls are both in high school, and discussions of college have become more and more frequent. When discussing this film with me, my oldest daughter shared how the college professor's words didn't always seem to reflect the same beliefs, that he seemed to be trying to get the students to realize something, but what that something was remained unclear. 

The kids quickly recognized Kevin Sorbo, the actor who plays the father in this film is the atheist professor in God's Not Dead. The father in the movie is a preacher, but God is rarely a part of the movie other than making fun of another student on campus who led Bible studies.

Not necessarily a movie with moral lessons, it did portray a redemptive story. Though raised in church, the main character seemed to make it to college without a clear understanding of right and wrong choices. Consequences for the his actions, while significant in context, almost make it seem like it is okay to go out and do whatever he wants, then in the end there is forgiveness. The drinking and partying which led to the main character no longer being in control of his own future seemed to first be presented as desirable until he had to face the consequences. 

Movie Trailer:

The music is catchy and also shares words of encouragement. "Come to the place where grace and mercy shines." The producer shared that the film was made to encourage people to restore relationships.  

What the film did for us was provide topics for further discussion. The student leading the Bible study who was ridiculed for that compared with the dancer who stood firm, both were apparently believers, yet only one was someone that the other students wanted to get to know better. My daughter appreciated that the female lead was portrayed not just as a Christian, but that her decisions were clearly based on what she believed. 

Disclosure: A preview of this movie was provided for the purpose of this review. This is a sponsored post. This is disclosed per FTC guidelines. 

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