Have you ever read a movie review for a movie that nobody — including the review author — has ever seen? No? Well buckle your seat belts kiddos, there’s a first time for everything…
Ahh Christianity in America. Quite the popular topic among, well, Americans. And not only Americans who claim to be Christians. I guess it depends on the groups you run with, but I find that it’s hard to escape the way that Christianity is perceived by the “general public” in America these days. Imagine if you went out to your local mall or movie theater (and I don’t necessarily recommend this activity) and asked all the passers-by what three words they would use to describe Christians, I bet the majority of the adjectives provided wouldn’t paint Christianity with a favorable brush. You can blame this on any number of things (the media is a popular one), but I tend to believe that the main reason that Christianity gets such a bad wrap is that “Christians,” on the whole, are doing a poor job representing the Christ from whom they derive their title. But of course that doesn’t apply to everybody under the Christian umbrella. There are no doubt a great many believers in the United States who actually do represent Jesus well. The problem is, their stories are in large part not presently being told. It was this realization that sparked The Ordinary Radicals to go from an idea to a reality.
The Ordinary Radicals is a feature-length documentary about the not-so-widely-seen face of Christianity in America today. It tells the stories of ordinary people who are doing some pretty incredible things, with faith as their fuel. People whose lifestyles would surprise those hypothetical shoppers and movie-goers that you just interviewed in your imagination. People who Bill Maher might not know what to do with. People who actually exhibit the characteristics of Christ in a way that the World around them can not only see, but also feel. It’s not that these people are doing anything new or mind-blowing, they’re simply taking the teachings of Jesus to heart and letting it mess up their lives in the best possible way.
So at this point you may be thinking, “Hey there buddy boy, how do you know what this film is about if you haven’t seen it?” That’s a fair question. You see, I’m currently an intern with the folks who are making this film. That’s right. The movie is in the works. You may have heard of Jamie Moffett and Shane Claiborne, two of the founding members of the intentional community in Philadelphia called The Simple Way. They co-founded Another World is Possible (AWIP), which you may already know to be a DVD series that Jamie directed, addressing relevant issues such as war, poverty, and others. The Ordinary Radicals is different from the AWIP series in that it is much more than a compilation of various short stories; it is a full-length documentary complete with a scheduled theatrical release. Think of it as a panorama of an entire skyline as opposed to a few shots of specific buildings. Unless that confuses you, then pretend I never said it.
Some of the folks we’ve interviewed for the film to date include Brian McLaren, Becky Garrison, Zack Exley, Jon Felton, Brandt Russo, and others. In the near future we will interview folks like Shane Claiborne, Aaron Weiss, Rob Bell, and many, many others as we follow the Jesus for President Book Tour this summer. It’s a very big and exciting thing that we’ve got ourselves into. If you’d like to read up on how the film making process is coming along, you can read all about it at The Ordinary Radicals official website.
To get an idea of what we’ve got in store for you in The Ordinary Radicals, take 75 seconds of your time to watch this clip from our interview with Brian McLaren.
Again, if you’d like to keep up to date with all the goings-on in the world of The Ordinary Radicals then check out our site. You can even contribute to this exciting project by pre-ordering the DVD (which you probably can’t wait to do), buying TOR shirts, TOR stickers, TOR buttons, TOR table cloths… all that stuff… except the table cloths.
About the Author: D.O. is a poser in nearly every sense of the word. He can beat you in a handstand contest. He buys two gallons of milk each time he goes to the grocery store and has never had any go bad. He’s also the founder of online diary for the masses, the blog that none of your friends are talking about.