"Machine Gun Preacher." No, really. That’s what they called this.

Hello, friend.
Have you ever wondered “How could they make ‘The Blind Side’ even moreso the ultimate ‘Red State’ movie?” Did you ever arrive at the conclusion that the only way for that to happen would be to change the lead character from an upscale white woman who saves helpless black people through the power of Christian righteousness and her NRA card to a blue-collar white man who saves an entire nation of helpless black people through Christian righteousness… and a rocket-launcher?

Brother, have I got a movie for you…

FWIW, I feel genuinely envious of anyone whose soul is intact enough to look at that poster and not immediately assume that it’s a parody of something. It’s the kid that does it – I cannot look at this and not think “You have GOT to be kidding.”

I’m sorry. I feel kinda bad about shitting on this because the real guy it’s based on sounds like a “real deal” hero, and if there’s ONE decent function of religion it’s inspiring guys like this to do this sort of thing… but the poster? The trailer? Everything from the dramatic-rise-from-baptism shot to the title to the poster to the very presence of Gerard “We Couldn’t Afford Jason Statham” Butler screams ‘unintended parody’ to me.

17 thoughts on “"Machine Gun Preacher." No, really. That’s what they called this.

  1. Mr Fist says:

    It obviously asks the question 'Would the story of The Blind Side be better if you added a rocket-launcher?'. Though I'm still trying to come up with an answer to that.


  2. CraftyAndy says:

    you know I would have a better impression of this movie if it.
    1: didn't have that god awful poster paired with it (seriously I feel a need to redesign the thing myself)
    2: Showed a little more of the harshness of the situation that goes on there to this day.

    However it is rated R and that alone shows promise. I'm surprised Gerald Butler can act so well.

    But that poster seriously I thought this was going to be another Griundhouse type of movie. I just can't get over it.

    And bob get off the whole shit of “the big white hope” who gives a shit who helps other poor people as long as someone helps them right? I never get a feeling of pride just because someone who is a hero in life or in movies happens to have the same ethnicity as me and neither does anyone else except the neo nazi bullshiters that likely don't follow blogs like this anyways. Point is I doubt anyone goes in making something like this with the mentality of “it's a feel good movie… for white people.”

    ugh how long before we interbreed enough that we become one big brown skin color so everyone can stop pretending something like “race” even exists to begin with.


  3. Mads says:

    Hah! You know what Ralphael, I don't think he would make a blog post about it this way.

    It's a story of an american protecting african children using guns. How the hell would you make a poster out of that and be “safe” ?

    And better yet, why bother trying to make a poster that's safe from accusations of patronism…the people who see it that way? not gonna like the story in the first place.

    Movie looks fun and it sheds a light on africa in a way that will speak to a lot more people than aid organisations can muster.

    It's a good, then.


  4. S. James says:

    The title of the film and the rather shit poster design that yes, shows Gerald Butler as the “great white hope” makes a film about a serious issue look like something from Fever Dreams.


  5. Gamecase says:

    I also thought it was some grindhouse project. I really want to see Gerald Butler machine gunning down sinners now. I can see the trailer now. A lady asking “What are you doing?!” and Gerald growling back “The Lord's work” and then an entire building exploding.


  6. Dav3 says:

    My problem with message movies, be it “rich people should feel bad about being successful”, or “homosexuals are people too”, or “made by Oliver Stone” is that the message ALWAYS gets in the way of the movie.

    “Christian” movies in particular seem to have that problem when they try to tell a sinful story in a way that isn't sinful. They water everything down until all they're left with is just another crappy movie that no one wants to see.

    I am impressed by this one, though. It gives the impression that they're making this for a regular audience, not a Sunday School class.


  7. Sylocat says:

    Never seen a more knee jerk condemnation simply due it having a positive portrayal of a Christian.

    Did you even READ the post? A “positive portrayal of a Christian” is not why he nor anyone else is condemning this movie, or any other movie.


  8. Scott says:

    I'm a white Christian guy, and I've done the kind of humanitarian project that it looks like butler's character is doing… except I was working in Bolivia, the building's I built weren't religiously-affiliated, and I never shot anybody.

    And I have no idea how to feel about this movie.

    I would love to see a movie about this guy. I would love to see a movie that shows people goes into harms way to do real good. I would love to see a movie where Christianity is presented as a potent factor in *his own* reasons for wanting to do the right thing, while not being presented as the *only* way for people to do the right thing. And Gerard Butler…. acting???? That's miraculous already.

    And while the trailer suggests that we might get what I'm hoping for -particularly since it seems respectable enough to be honoured at the Toronto Film Festival- the jokey moment at the end of the trailer, the baptism shot, the poster and even the title seem to be contrary to that.

    As for the race issue, I'm also torn. On the one hand I agree with CraftyAndy, and Toronto isn't exactly a red-state kind of place – dumb mayor with a spending-cut fetish notwithstanding- but on the other hand… Yeah… I can see how this would sell to the “righteous gun-wielding Christian crusader” the likes of which I have no doubt make Jesus himself vomit with rage.

    As always, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.


  9. Samuel James Newsome says:

    Call me naive all you want, I really think this looks good. At least the guy isn't some perfect king/queen of suburban idealism, and hopefully there'll be some more native characters who actually matter, but even if the racial issue is poorly handled once again, this looks like a pretty damn good character focused action-drama.


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