The Source for Youth Ministry
Jonathan's Resource Ezine

Weekly Resources, Ideas and Articles from The Source for Youth Ministry
Tuesday, April 3, 2007

In This Issue

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A New Easter Movie Clip Discussion Idea: Check out this new Movie Clip Discussion idea from the movie "Hart's War"

Easter arrives this weekend and some of you might still be looking for good discussions or curriculum to use. Check out this brand new Easter MOVIE CLIP DISCUSSION from THE SOURCE's Todd Pearage:

Hart's War
Hart's War
(MGM, 2002)

Main Point of Discussion: His sacrifice leads us home.

The Movie Clip: "You are willing to exchange your life for theirs?"

Easter is an especially great time of year for us to remember Jesus' death on the cross. Every year at this time we regret where we have fallen short and every year at this time we reflect on His sacrifice.

Hart's War, staring Bruce Willis and Collin Ferrell, is a great movie about honor, bravery and sacrifice. Set in a German POW camp during World War II, this movie helps us understand what sacrifice means.

Introducing the Clip:
Today I want to show you a clip from the movie Hart's War. Colin Farrell plays Lt. Thomas W. Hart, a young WWII officer with a cushiony job, who while on a routine delivery is ambushed, taken prisoner, tortured and sent to a POW camp. There he meets Col. William A. McNamara (Bruce Willis), a fourth-generation solider whose toughness is rivaled only by his cleverness.

The Americans continue to fight the war from behind the fences and plan an escape to destroy a nearby munitions plant. Every perceived act of rebellion by the prisoners is met with extreme retaliation. The Germans execute random prisoners for discipline, discouraging any attempts to escape. A murder in camp, a mock court marshal and racial tension provide them the chance to set a plan into motion. Everyone, especially McNamara, understands and is willing to accept the consequences for an escape attempt.

The stage has been set, the players are in place, and the trial is nearing its end. McNamara and 34 men are escaping while Hart delivers his closing arguments. Even though he is innocent, Hart confesses to the murder, willing to sacrifice himself. This leads to the Germans discovering the escape attempt.

Let's watch the dramatic ending of
Hart's War.

Scene Script:

BEGIN CLIP AT 1 hour, 51minutes and 59 seconds.
    Visser: I want every man...who participated in the court-martial...removed from the line. Line them up. Line them up. Now.

    Hart: These men knew nothing, Colonel.

    Visser: Line them up! You will be the first.

    Hart: These men knew nothing.

    Visser: You will be the first!

    Hart: Colonel, they knew nothing!

    Visser: So, your men are saboteurs as well?

    McNamara: No, Colonel, they're just soldiers. They were following my orders. I assume complete responsibility.

    Visser: That's very noble of you. Seems you've won our duel after all, Colonel.

    McNamara: No. We both lose, don't we?

    Visser: Yeah. And now you wish to trade your life for theirs?

    McNamara: Yes, I do.

    Visser: Very well.

END CLIP AT 1 hour 56 minutes and 38 seconds. (Please note: there is a graphic scene of violence right after this clip, please be prepared to stop it at the appropriate time.)

Transitional Statement:
Our culture loves heroes. We love stories of sacrifice. We want to celebrate those who are willing to sacrifice themselves for their country, their family, for their friends and yes, for God.

In that powerful scene we see one man willing to exchange his life for the lives of his men. That kind of sacrifice may lead to medals or to movies or even to victory. But only one sacrifice leads us home.

Let's take some time to discuss the sacrifice that leads home.

Divide into Small Groups:
Let's go ahead and split up into our discussion groups, and then afterward we'll come back together for a final word.


Rewarding You for Your Ideas: Send us your ideas for our upcoming article "Graduation Send-off Ideas"... and you could win a Charlotte's Web DVD.

We'd love your ideas! We're giving away five brand new Charlotte's Web DVD's to the five best ideas.

As the end of the school year approaches we hope to provide some quality ideas about how to send off our graduates. If you work with jr. high or sr. high students, what do you do for your graduating 8th graders or your graduating seniors?
Charlotte's Web
  • Do you have a senior dinner?

  • Do you do any senior trips?

  • Do you give any gifts?

  • Do you have a special service?

We want to post the best ideas.

And just for fun, we're giving away five of the newly released Charlotte's Web DVD to the five best ideas.

The Charlotte's Web DVD was released today, Tuesday, April 3rd. It's a fantastic film (CLICK HERE for my review) loaded with bonus materials.

Email us at to send us your ideas!

Movie Reviews: Hear from Jonathan and Todd about MEET THE ROBINSONS in the theatres, ROCKY BALBOA for rent... and a few others

Jonathan and Todd have added quite a few reviews to our MOVIE REVIEW page lately. Take a peek at their "2 cents" about these recent theatrical releases and rentals.


Meet The Robinsons Meet the Robinsons (3/30/2007)
reviewed by Jonathan McKee

Rated G

Directed by Stephen Anderson

Starring the voices of Angela Bassett, Laurie Metcalf, Tom Selleck, Adam West...

Jonathan's Rating: Theatre Worthy

Meet the Robinsons is "a trip." It's like nothing you've seen before-a little bizarre like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, with the zaniness and pacing of a Robin Williams monologue (don't be confused by my analogy... Robin Williams doesn't have anything to do with this film... it just feels like something out of his brain), and the animation of The Incredibles. Meet the Robinsons is good fun entertainment.

This spectacular animated tale is about a brilliant young orphan named Lewis who loves to invent gadgets and gismos to better the human race. Motivated to discover the identity of his birth mother, Lewis tries to create a device that will display memories buried deep in our brains, helping us remember them. But like Sarah Conner (yes... I'm referring to The Terminator), Lewis is visited by two people from the future: one to hurt him, and one to help him. Lewis and his new friend go on a wild adventure to prevent a devastating future.

The film is full of laughs with zany gags and a wealth of interesting yet peculiar characters. You'll find yourself laughing and quoting memorable one-liners for days to follow.


Pride Pride (3/23/2007)
reviewed by Todd Pearage

Rated PG for thematic material, language (including some racial epithets), and violence.

Directed by Sunu Gonera (first time director)

Starring Terrance Howard, Bernie Mac and Tom Arnold

Todd's Rating: Skip it

Pride will have trouble graduating from the kiddy pool.

The film is based on the true events of Jim Ellis (Terrence Howard), a college-educated African-American who is frustrated by his inability to find a teaching position in the 1974 job market. He reluctantly takes a job to clean out and close down a community center in the Philadelphia Department of Recreation (PRD). While there he discovers a dilapidated recreational pool and dreams about what could be. Because he was once a swimmer who was not allowed to compete because of his skin color, he decides to put together Philadelphia's first African-American swim team. With the help of the grumpy janitor, Elston (Bernie Mac), they do their best to turn a group of misfits into a winning team.

Does any of that sound familiar? It should. It follows in the footsteps of films like Remember the Titans and Glory Road. If only it could have lived up to their legacy.

I like sports movies that tell an inspiring story in a way that motivates us. You know the kind: a group of misfits, losers or enemies plus a dedicated, inspiring and maybe even "rough around the edges" coach experience some initial failure which is followed by a lot of hard work that leads them to the big win. When done right, even when we know what's going to happen, we cheer them on, cross our fingers and maybe even cry with them as they celebrate. Although Pride followed the same formula, it doesn't even come close to greatness.



Charlotte's Web Charlotte's Web (4/3/2007)
reviewed by Jonathan McKee

Rated G

Directed by Gary Winick (13 Going on 30...)

Starring Dakota Fanning and the voices of Julia Roberts, Steve Buscemi, John Cleese, Cedric, Oprah, Kathy Bates, Reba, Robert Redford... (need I say more?)

Jonathan's Rating: Worth Buying

Some film. One terrific film. Humble film.

No, it's not a cartoon. And I can't even call it just a kids' film. It's much, much more.

If you're like me, you read Charlotte's Web as a child, and even shed a tear or two when Charlotte dies at the end (I don't think I'm giving anything away here... unless you live in a shoebox). Then if you're also like me you saw a cartoon of the book that didn't do the book justice. So when I heard there was going to be another movie... my first thought was, "Oh brother." Not because I don't like the story... but because I'm sick of people butchering great stories with lame films. But then I saw the film.


The new film Charlotte's Web far exceeded my expectations. It was literally fantastic.

The story is funny, inspiring and true to the classic story. This is definitely THE family film to see during Christmas break this year. It will make you laugh, it will make you cry... and it will make you think.

Like the book, the film deals with the subject of death in a healthy way that will provoke positive opportunities for conversations with your kids.


Rocky Balboa Rocky Balboa (3/20/2007)
reviewed by Jonathan McKee and Todd Pearage

Rated PG for boxing violence and some language.

Directed by Sylvester Stallone (Rocky II, III, IV)

Starring Sylvester Stallone, Burt Young, Geraldine Hughes and Milo Ventimiglia

Jonathan's Rating: Rental

Todd's Rating: Rental

As the movie opens we find this once larger-than-life boxing champion broken. His wife Adrian has died of cancer, he and his son, Rocky Jr. (Milo Ventimiglia), have been growing apart and Paulie (Burt Young) is still "Paulie."

Although Rocky owns and operates a restaurant, fittingly enough called Adrian's, where he spends most nights smiling and reliving his greatest fights for the customers, his scars tell the real story. He has accepted the fact he will never fight again. But thanks to a new ESPN virtual boxing program which is pairing up fighters from different eras, this is all about to change.

In the virtual bout, a young Rocky Balboa is matched up against the over-confident, current champion, Mason ?The Line' Dixon, and of course Rocky wins. As both men watch themselves fight in this computer generated match, they are given a gut check. For Rocky it is a reminder of his younger self, of how great a fighter he once was and it is enough to motivate him to get back into the ring. For Mason, it is a blow to his inflated ego and it is enough to motivate him to accept the challenge. It truly is a battle of the ages... a battle of will vs. skill.

I had mixed emotions when I first heard there would be a final Rocky film... especially when Rocky is now 60. But I knew I would have to see it, I mean come on, Rocky brought us some of the best one-liners ever, lines like: "Cut me Mick!", "Adrian, catch me!", "I'm gonna bust you up." "Go for it." and "If he dies, he dies." Not to mention this franchise has set the standard in "training sequences."

I agree... I also had mixed emotions. I liked the first few Rocky films... but I also thought, "Another one? You gotta be kidding me!"

Yeah. So maybe it was my high expectations, maybe it was the slow story, maybe it had something to do with seeing a 60-year old Sly Stallone with his shirt off...but I was kinda disappointed. It's almost an hour into the movie before any kind of real action takes place and that hour is filled with a sappy and very awkward romance, flashbacks, and lame Rocky Balboa humor.

JONATHAN'S WORD: And even though we gave this the same score: A RENTAL... which means "decent entertainment-worth renting at home" ...I'll disagree with you here. I think the dialogue carried the film even in the first hour.

At first I thought I was a "biased" Rocky fan. But my kids (who have not seen any of the Rocky films) watched it with me and all agreed it was a good film. They weren't jumping up and down, "Let's watch it again!" But they were laughing and enjoying it with me. That's a pretty good test: "the 9, 11 and 13 year old test."



Reaching Out to the Unchurched Teenager Training: Coming to Detroit, Michigan on April 28th

Looking for an affordable training for you and your volunteers? Check out this Saturday training seminar from THE SOURCE coming soon to Detroit

Detroit, MI

April 28th, Jonathan is doing a Saturday workshop (9AM to 3PM) for youth workers within driving distance of Detroit, MI. If you're a youth worker, paid or a volunteer, this is for you!

Here's the details for this Michigan training:

    Saturday, April 28, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
    Two choices:
    • $15 at the door
    • $10 early bird rate if registered by April 21st

Jonathan Coming to Phoenix, AZ Area This June: Jonathan is coming to Phoenix this June and is available to speak for less than half of his normal cost

Jonathan will already be in Phoenix this June and available to speak June 10, 11 or 12th. If you are interested in bringing
Jonathan in for a speaking or training event,
email us at
and let us know what you're looking for.

Jonathan is booked to speak at camps, conferences and events across the U.S. CLICK HERE to see what others are saying about this dynamic speaker.

Jonathan McKee's youth ministry and evangelism training ranges from 90 to 180 minute sessions like he does at the Y.S. National Youth Worker Conventions every year to the all day workshops like his Reaching Out to the Unchurched training he does nationally. Jonathan is the author of numerous youth ministry books including DO THEY RUN WHEN THEY SEE YOU COMING? and the upcoming YS book GETTING STUDENTS TO SHOW UP. He trains youth workers, equipping them to not only reach beyond the church walls, but to disciple them into the church.

Normally THE SOURCE charges $1,000 plus travel for Jonathan to come out and speak for one day, or $1500 plus travel for a weekend. All money goes to THE SOURCE and the free resources we provide.

Since Jonathan will already be in Phoenix for these three days, you won't have to pay any travel costs. In addition, THE SOURCE will be charging only half the normal honorarium.

If you are interested in bringing
Jonathan in for a speaking or training event,
email us at
and let us know what you're looking for.

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