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SandyW

Machine Gun Preacher - Just saw it!

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WOW! I just saw Machine Gun Preacher at the Orlando screening. It was fantastic! The movie is so emotional and tragic. Definitely makes you see that the things in our lives that we consider so bad, are really nothing in comparison. Gerry does a fantastic job and sure hope he gets the credit he deserves for his performance.

Just a note on something that happened during the movie. The movie had been running about 15 minutes, when it stopped. Of course everyone groaned thinking something was broken. But then there were about 6 police (I think swat team) down at the bottom of the theater with guns. They went over to 2 guys sitting in the front row, pointing the guns at them, and telling them to get up and turn around. They puts cuffs on them, then took them out. Then I heard some voices behind me, and another 3 police had guns pointed at a guy behind me. They had him remove a number of items on him - I think a knife and a leather arm 'thing' with spikes. (Sorry, don't know what it's called.) They finally got the cuffs on him too and took him out. They were all in biker type clothing. Then one of the officials for the movie apologized for the interruption saying it was a legal issue with some of the gang activity in the area. They started the movie again, and funny how all of that got quickly forgotten with such an engaging movie.

Edited by SandyW

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Glad you like the movie Sandy.

Here is a couple of links to the stories of what happened in the theater.

Read HERE and HERE!

Cheryl

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Incredible event in a theatre...But I'm more attracted by the moviePosted Image . hope it gonna be shown in China.

So it's a tearful story, Sandy? Which scenes touched you most?

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Great news article, but I wish they hadn't said MGP was a "biker movie". Way to discourage people from coming!

Suzie

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I don't like the reference to it as a biker movie either. I agree that it will deter some from going.

I think one of the most moving scenes was when one of the children tells Sam (Gerry), not to let them take your heart. I don't want to give too much away, or any spoilers. It's a tough movie to watch, but thankfully, they don't over extend some of the bad scenes. :embarassed:

On the lighter side, to me, Gerry's eyes really stood out in this movie. :wuv:

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Wow that was an added bonus; almost sounded like a "prop" for the movie! I can't wait to see it!

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I hope this isn't a precursor of things to come with this movie and just a random event! If those guys were carrying arms illegally, they should have been arrested. If they have a right to carry, then they shouldn't have been in the theater with them however, perhaps they should have just taken them outside, confiscated their weapons and allowed them to continue to watch the movie. It might have had a positive affect on them!

Sounds like a scary event and I hope it doesn't deter people from seeing the movie either. It is NOT a biker movie. Sam's previous world was made up of criminals and the underbelly of society. Even after a person reforms and gets away from that, it can still follow them to some extent. Combine all the bad biker, drug, gang stuff, with religion, humanitarianism and foreign politics and well, Gerry's got his hands full on this one!

Delene

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I hadn't read this before but when I was waiting to talk to Sam after the premiere he was very animatedly talking to some people about the incident (I didn't know where it had happened). I used to live just outside Orlando - about 30 years ago - and wouldn't have expected it there (I know, gangs and violence exist everywhere). MGP is most definitely NOT a biker movie - unfortunately it sounds like the bad guys didn't get to stay long enough to see Sam transformed from being one of them.

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Although it was eventful....at least you got to see the movie at all! I don't think I will as I've checked and it doesn't look like it's playing anywhere near me! :tantrum: I still don't believe that this movie is going to be so limited to the point that it's viewing will also be limited....Maybe they shouldn't be dragging them out of the theaters after all!! :p

:wave: Frannie

Edited by ladyfran

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What surprises me is that Gerry is going all out with interviews and Premiere's and TIFF, the list goes on... and the movie isn't out there for people to see. Not everyone lives in LA and NY. If it comes out weeks from now people will forget about it by then and won't go see it. I just heard on FOX that Gerry will be on Mike Huckabee's Show tomorrow (Saturday) talking about MGP. It is being advertised a lot on the FOX channel. All of this advertising will go for naught because I know it will not be in Colorado for the next two weeks anyway. Maybe never. It will be forgotten by most people weeks from now.

My town's theater owner told me that the movie is listed as "limited distribution" and it doesn't state how many copies of the movie there are. If there are only enough copies for a limited distribution how can it be distributed around the country even if it does well initially? It costs lots of money and takes time to make movie copies for theaters which is why so many indie movies do come out in a limited release.

~HUGS~ Kathy

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MGP is getting crushed in the reviews, and it desperately needs word of mouth on Twitter and elsewhere to create a

critic-proof buzz, but it can't create a buzz against critic opinion unless the average "joe" can see it. I'm very disappointed by how this whole thing has been handled. It's not even being shown in the regions that would probably give it legs. BTW, I have not been reading the reviews myself...but word is definitely out and it's not good. Now I wonder if I'll even get a chance to see it.

Swannie

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The reviews I have read, with the exception of one who sounded like he had a personal ax to grind with Gerry, are generally decent, and even those who take issue with some aspects of the film often had good-to-great things to say about Gerry's performance (except Mr. Ax-to-Grind). But I avoid reading bloggers and faux-critics as much as my eyes can avoid them, trying to stick with the major papers and established entertainment media. I was pleasantly surprised to see the excellent review the L.A. Times gave it because they are usually tough. Since it has only been shown in a very few places so far I'd have to ask whether some of the so-called critics have even seen the film yet. This film was made on a shoestring budget and was picked up late in the game by a new distributor who is making every effort with Gerry's help to promote the heck out of it. It will open in a several more theaters next week, and more in the following 2 weeks. If it does well enough on a PER SCREEN basis it may open in more. But as one of the reviewers who loved the film said, this is a love it or hate it experience. It isn't going to get much middle-of-the-road reaction, so of course we have to expect that means that there may be as much bad as good said about it. It is extremely intense, violent and emotional and that is going to turn some people off immediately, it is NOT a feel-good movie. It will either evoke deep empathetic pain for the people of East Africa and appreciation for Sam's mission to help, or it will cause you to shut down and shut it out for whatever reason your psyche creates, ignoring the truth behind the movie and finding ways to tear it down. I am sure that Relativity does not have the budget for a wide release and is hoping it gets enough buzz to build slowly. Not every worthy movie gets a big audience, many movies that have won Oscars had low box office numbers and very limited distribution.

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I saw Machine Gun Preacher on Thursday at an advance screening in Houston. The theater was packed and they had to turn people away. We started lining up at about 4:30 pm for the show at 7:30. Anyone who arrived after 6:00 was pretty much out of luck for a seat.

I thought the film was terrific! What a powerful and emotional story! Gerry really immersed himself in this role. He WAS Sam Childers! It's an incredible accomplishment to be able to capture the roller coaster of emotions that Sam must have gone through and to make that so believable. Gerry has done some work here that I think he can truly be proud of. If it doesn't win him an Oscar, he should at the very least be recognized for the talent he has. So many of us have known it all along, but I think that now so many more will see that Gerry is a truly gifted actor.

The story is difficult. This is a hard film to watch, with some graphic scenes that may make you turn away. The plight of these children will rip your heart out. But sometimes reality isn't a pretty thing. The story had to be told with all it's grisly details.

Despite what some critics are saying, I think the film is very good. I will be going back to see this again for sure. Can't wait to read others' reactions to the film.

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Just saw MGP in Scottsdale AZ. I went to the 1:00pm movie so there were not many people there in the middle of the afternoon on a Friday. Hoping it will pick up for the later movies and on Saturday and Sunday. I don't think I've ever had a movie have this much impact on me since POTO which is a whole different kind of impact. I cried through most of it and kept tearing up on the drive home which is not recommend when you are trying to drive in Phoenix traffic. If Gerry does not get some kind of nomination for this movie, I will be extremely disappointed. Hope more people get to see it eventually.

Sara

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Hubby and I were there in Scottsdale as well. Wonderful, wonderful movie. We talked about it all the way home. Gerry's performance was so perfect and the supporting cast were great as well. What a pleasure to finally see a quality film that tells a unique, heart-wrenching, and uplifting story.

We will tell everyone we know about the movie but it is a real shame that it didn't open to a wide release and pleanty of advertising. It is interesting that in Yahoo Movies the critics were very negative but the average viewers gave it a solid A.

Well done Mr. Butler. Thank you for bringing another spectacular characterzation to the big screen.

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Wish I could comment on the movie but alas....I'm in the same boat as a lot of you my friends!! The movie is not showing in my area! Maybe some where down the road but by then it prolly will be a thing of the past! ;)

:wave: Frannie

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Wish I could comment on the movie but alas....I'm in the same boat as a lot of you my friends!! The movie is not showing in my area! Maybe some where down the road but by then it Probably will be a thing of the past! ;)

:wave: Frannie

:pointy:You are not alone there Frannie. I went to the movies with my sisters (once a month visit) on Tuesday; only to find out that MGP was only playing on Friday so we watched "Straw Dogs" instead. But as soon as MGP is available in the stores; it will be sitting with ALL the other "Gerry" movies on my shelf to enjoy when and where I want to...see there is an "up" side too...

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Had an interesting experience Sunday - took my husband to see MGP - I think it touched him deeply, more deeply than he can express. I loved that almost nobody left during the credits (very rare) as they all wanted to see the clips of the real Sam and others. As we were leaving the couple that had been sitting behind us got into one of those discussions I love - he was asking "why doesn't he do that here?" (focus his efforts) to which his wife replied "because we don't NEED that here!" They were not arguing, just discussing, and I loved that! This movie should make you think and talk.

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Two comments. 1: the incident in Orlando -- they were friends of Sam. I was one of the gals talking to him when you, Susan, walked up to him during the screening in LA. He was telling us about that incident. He didn't seem too upset, but it surprised us. Unless you've read the book, you wouldn't know Sam lived in Orlando for several years. Of course, his friends there are bikers.

And 2: he IS doing something here. He told us he is now getting involved in trying to stop the sex trafficking of children here in the U.S. I think most of the fighting is over in Sudan, and he really likes a good fight. He's found another one, one that he can sink his teeth into.

Keep watching him. He will surprise us.

Rayna

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Thanks for the clarification, Rayna, I only heard the tail end of what Sam was saying so didn't realize he knew the guys in Orlando.

I knew that Sam had causes here in the states already, even through his church. He's taken on another heartbreaking battle if he's working to end the sex-trafficking of kids here. I know that was a cause that Marlene, the Exec Director of The Shade Tree in Las Vegas was championing for awhile, until it became too dangerous for her and others at the shelter. Traffickers are known to burst in guns blazing to retrieve those they consider their "property". The stories she can tell about what happens in Vegas, and how many blind eyes are turned to it, are enough to make you cry and burn with anger simultaneously. I think Sam's the kind of guy who just might make a difference.

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I saw Machine Gun Preacher twice this weekend and thought it was very good. I was not surprised at the quality of acting since I know Gerry Butler is a real deal actor. He has the depth and range that this complex character needs and he nailed it perfectly! There were some scenes where I shut my eyes but the rest was very engaging. I'm glad I saw it twice, as I got much more of the storyline and noticed more details and basked in the beauty of Gerry on the big screen. I hope they have lots of extras on the dvd, I'd love to see a longer version of Gerry preaching and a longer version of the kissing scene. I went to 2 different movie theaters (multiplexes, Seattle, Bellevue) and neither had posters! WHAT! so sad that the advertising budget is invisible. I highly recommend this movie for all and it is worth a drive to see it, if you have to. I didn't necessarily see it as a Christian movie, per se, but that was part of Sam's journey in his life. Lots of complexity in one character, and Gerry is fabulous in this role. He and the supporting cast do a wonderful job. I'll be seeing it a few more times before I buy the DVD. Thanks Gerry for doing this movie.

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I am happy to say that I saw MGP for the second time, yesterday, in NYC (the first time was at the world premiere at TIFF). I was so distracted the first time, by all the premiere excitment. This time, I was better able to concentrate on the movie and Gerard's performance. His performance is very emotional, throughout, and I do hope and believe that he will receive proper recognition. The story is a very worthy one.....much more than Sam Childer's personal journey. The tragedy of the children of Sudan stays with you, as you leave the theater. Perhaps Relativity just plans to keep the movie in limited theaters, slowly but surely building word of mouth and award buzz, through the fall. If the movie came out big, too early, it could be gone and forgotten by award time. Perhaps they have the right strategy.

:hmm:

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Its always difficult for me to go see a new Gerry movie and not only be entertained but try to stay objective because I can be inthralled just seeing Gerry on the screen. Its kind of akin to watching a loved one or relative perform and try not to be biased but still keep an open mind and give an honest critique. I think Im pretty good at that for the most part. However, I have to say after seeing Machine Gun Preacher yesterday that I was pleasantly blown away! I thought it was wonderful!

Im not a fan of very violent movies but having said that when its fighting for the innocent who cannot fight for themselves, the underdog and all that, and have done nothing to deserve the brutality they are getting, Im cheering it on big time!

I do believe there are people that are born warriors. They are the perpetual sentries and protectors of the good from the evil, the "keepers" if you will, even when it seems at times they are evil themselves and not so saintly. But wouldn't you want someone like Sam on your side in a fight? I think with a person such as Sam Childers, his violent life and misguided anger is a result of being that warrior spirit unfulfilled that drove him from his gut to do the things he did but he just didnt know how to use it in a more positive way until he found his calling and he found that in finding his faith in a higher power.

Once he decided that he was but an instrument in the grand scheme of things, he found his place and he channeled all that angst and energy and warrior spirit in a direction that it needed to go. God works like that if you open your heart. God tells you what to do and how to do it if you listen and puts our strengths as well as weaknesses to good use, no matter what they are.

I was so proud of Gerry for telling this story. I cried a lot, was moved to tears more than once and in the end I think a lot of tears were for Gerry and his performance in bringing to life Sams story. Like many others here in this culture, I had no idea the harsher realities. It somehow makes our problems seem like a big whining session and a call to get off our butts after seeing something like this!

Gerry has such a knack for expressing a range of emotions, as we all know, in characters ranging from tough and dangerous to kind and even vulnerable. His own personal emotions always seem to lay so close to the surface. I can imagine that Gerry, albeit challenged to get it as close to the truth as possible without all the HW hype, just expressing that range of emotion like Sams must have been a great release for him as well as tremendously exhausting!

I loved the movie and though parts of it seemed to move too quickly at times and one has to be patient in the beginning to get through the evil Sam, the story has such depth and almost operatic nuance. Its very difficult to express the pure culture shock of life in a place like Sudan and shift gears back to life in the suburbs of the United States or to feel it unless you've lived in another culture and come back, like a soldier going to war and returning. That's what Sam's life is all about and he enlists in it on his own. So appropriate then is the title "Another Man's War".

All of this would take its toll on anyone not to mention the difficulty in painting a true picture of that. It would be difficult to put so much information and the telling of the story of what took place over a long period of time in to two hours as well, especially one of the evolution of one mans change.

I dont think Sam does what he does to redeem himself for all his past evils either. I think Sam and his warrior heart were lucky to find direction and calling. He had been stifled and angry for a long time, lashing out viciously at everyone and everything, acting out and desperately searching for something for so long to fill him up and used drugs and booze and violence, even with those he loved.

Then the transformation came when he asked for help. He showed he was vulnerable and helpless to figure it out on his own and knew where he was going wasnt the way. It was hard for him but he did it even though he's probably still evolving. God answered and he showed him the way. And even though Sam knows its going to be an ongoing battle that never ends even now, he knows it is what he has to do. Its part of who he is now and he cant ever stop.

I think Gerry has a warrior spirit too. Its in that energy he feels inside that makes him anxious and it makes him crazy to not be able to utilize all that energy where it needs to go. The fight for what is right! Thats why he became an actor so he could express it. But more then that, he became an actor unafraid to do what he feels in his heart, kind of like Sam. Its his calling to help spread the word of his fellow warrior spirits in that regard I suppose, just like Sam the preacher. Both Sam and Gerry are doing their thing despite what anyone says and fulfilling their own destinies.

Like I said before, I think a lot of my emotion was in how proud I was of Gerry for telling this story so vividly and honestly. My last thoughts as the credits rolled were not only of thanks and admiration for Sams courageous work. The words that came to my lips were, Way to go, Gerry!

Delene

Edited by GBPhanatic

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I came here to express my feelings after seeing MGP yesterday. After reading Delene's beautifully written post above I cannot add much more but just repeat what she said because I whole heartedly agree with everything she has written about the movie and Gerry's performance. I always go to Gerry's movies focusing on him but right off I didn't see Gerry on the screen, I saw Sam. A character I had never seen before in Gerry's body. There was no hint of the Scottish accent. He nailed Sam's way of speaking to perfection. Every move was different from our Gerry. Gerry did take Sam into his soul and displayed him to perfection. It was hard to see Gerry in the beginning but it didn't take long to forget Gerry and just see the character. It was definitely Gerry's finest performance to date.

*SPOILER ALERT*

This was a Faith based movie and just when you go away from it in the film it comes back in the film to remind you. What really made this realistic to me was the fact the "Sam" reverted back to some of his old ways after his friend died and all that he experienced in Africa started to haunt him and he doubted God. That happens to everyone at times during one's life's journey. It made the story less like a fairy tale, bad guy becomes good and stays that way. It showed the struggle we all have to make sense of the horrors in this world. Where is God when this is all happening? I think it is not God's way to step in but he does send people like Sam to fight for those who need help. I agree with Delene, Sam is a warrior which is why he was the way he was. Now he is focusing on using that warrior, no fear personality of his to help people who have no one to turn to for help. We do need people like that even though some people feel they are as bad as the enemy. I look upon it as being realistic. The weak gets run over by the strong. How can we stand by and do nothing.

I don't know where this movie is going. It is a puzzle to me on why it has been pulled back in some theaters and it looks like it is not going wider. I just read that Relativity is involved with this new movie, "Hunter Killer" that Gerry may get involved with so Gerry must not blame Relativity for what's happened to MGP. I will just wait and see what happens as time goes on before I make a judgement.

~HUGS~ Kathy

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