Amazing Wilberforce

I’ve just noticed that there is a film coming out titled Amazing Grace. It is the story of Willam Wilberforce and his fight to end slavery in the British Empire and that pretty much brought it to an end world wide. Ioan Gruffudd is playing Wilberforce and Albert Finney is playing John Newton. Gruffudd played Horatio Hornblower and did a wonderful job. 1Sadly, he also played Reed Richards in the recent waste of film and time The Fantastic Four. To get some idea of what Wilberforce was able to do in ending slavery, imagine if one man was able, within his lifetime, to get America off of oil and on to renewable resources. Slavery was economically important to the Empire almost to the point oil is for the West. My analogy was overstated, but not my much. I hope that they allow Wilberforce to remain a Christian in their adaptation of the film. The presense of John Newton and the name of the movie leads me to believe they have.

Anyway, this could be an excellent movie if this is done well. Justin Taylor linked to a blog that summarized a few reviews and they are mixed. Okay. It’s still an excellent story if they’ll just do it right. This makes me think of another film that could be excellent if it were well written and directed. The story of one of my theological heros Benjamin Keach. He was one of the authors of the 1689 London Baptist Confession. The time period he lived in in London was extremely complex politically and religion was tightly intertwined with politics. When Keach became a Baptist, it cost him dearly. He did it because he was convinced it was the right thing to do. As I was reading The Excellent Benjamin Keach I was impressed that with some careful filling in of the gaps, the story could be an excellent film. Not a huge appeal but it could still be done well.

1 Sadly, he also played Reed Richards in the recent waste of film and time The Fantastic Four.
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