Last Ounce of Courage is a Christian message movie. The message, however, is not religious focused in the sense that it's preaching Christ or the principles of the church.
Some of it is in there, but it's there as a focal point and not a preaching point. The film's focus is tolerance and lack of tolerance by a society bullied by people offended by everything.
That part is not difficult to hear and offers a message that ought to be out there more. Who isn't tired of political correctness?
Here's the story. Marshall R. Teague (TV's Walker, Texas Ranger) is Bob. He's the mayor of a small town. His son died in an unnamed war and when the son died, Bob shut down.
A reconnection with the son's widow and his grandson, combined with a question and a statement from the kid, reignite Bob. Christmas has been all but banned from his town. Decorations of the holiday offend people so they aren't put up. A cross hanging from the local mission is taken down because it's offensive. Bibles aren't allowed in schools. The school's holiday play is about aliens finding a new born king and not about the Messiah and shepherds and wise men finding the Christ child.
Separation of church and state are taken to the extreme.
The film isn't really that good. It comes across as a cheap TV movie of the week and the only "name" stars are Jennifer O'Neill and Fred "The Hammer" Williamson. Their star power flamed out long ago. Older viewers will remember them -- barely. She sizzled in Summer of '42 in 1971 and Scanners in 1981 and put a face to Cover Girl cosmetics all through the 70s. Williamson played pro football and did small movies and bit parts in classics such as M*A*S*H.
While the film isn't likely to make your "best of the year" list, the message is sound. We have become a society ruled by bullies who are offended by everything. People in positions of power fear lawsuits and complaints about a cross or an Islamic symbol or anything expressing faith displayed anywhere.
This nation claims a love of diversity but squashes diversity at every turn. The film states this is especially true about anything Christian, and from my personal point of view, that rings true. Since Christianity is more out front in the U.S. than other religions, the statement fits. But it also fits for anything perceived as being a belief outside of what these people -- whoever the hell "they" are -- think ought to be stated, displayed or thought.
And it's definitely thought-provoking stuff.
Directors: Darrel Campbell, Kevin McAfee
Marshall R. Teague, Jennifer O'Neill, Fred Williamson
Rated PG-13 for mature themes, violence. It is playing at the Carmike 12.
5 stars to 4 1/2 stars: Must see on the big screen
4 stars to 3 1/2 stars: Good film, see it if it's your type of movie.
3 stars to 2 1/2 stars: Wait until it comes out on DVD.
2 stars to 1 star: Don't bother.
0 stars: Speaks for itself.