The Source for Youth Ministry

Movie Reviews
by Todd Pearage

Trust (7/26/2011)

Rated R for disturbing material involving the rape of a teen, language, sexual content and some violence.

Starring Clive Owen, Catherine Keener, Liana Liberato and Jason Clarke

Directed by David Schwimmer (Run Fatboy Run)

Todd's Rating: Rental

Very difficult to watch, but parents of teenagers might really consider watching it.

Safe and sound in their suburban home, Will and Lynn Cameron used to sleep well at night, trusting their children were protected. Will, in particular, was comforted by the fact that he and Lynn raised three bright children, and that once the doors were locked and the alarm was set, nothing–absolutely nothing–was going to harm his family. When his 14-year-old daughter, Annie, made a new friend online–a 16-year-old boy named Charlie whom she met in a volleyball chat room–Will and Lynn didn’t think much of it. They discussed his friendship with her, assuming that this is normal with teenagers who connect through the Internet. After weeks of communicating online, Annie becomes enraptured by Charlie and finds herself drawn to him more and more. Slowly, she learns he is not who he claims to be; yet, Annie remains intrigued by Charlie even as the truth about him is uncovered. The devastating revelation reverberates through her entire family, setting in motion a chain of events that forever change their lives in ways that no one could have ever predicted.

Trust played more like an after-school movie than anything else. Complete with some bad acting, cheesy music and a very strong scared-straight message.

And I think that will keep most people away from this one. Trust deals with a subject that makes people squirm. What's more, it deals with this subject effectively, which means that audiences most definitely will squirm and wish they were anywhere but watching it – some may even turn it off.

Clive Owen is nothing like the cool, unflappable lead we know him to be. He starts the movie as a loving, outgoing husband and father, then turns into an angry, helpless mess – and very believable. Then there is Chris Henry Coffey who plays Charlie. Coffey plays him perfectly, because the moment you see him, you want to smash his face against the wall. Repeatedly.

Trust is not the crowd-pleasing revenge film (i.e. Taken). Instead it's about the specific consequences of this particular crime, how it affects relationships, self-image and the family structure.

Yes it made me squirm, yes I wanted to turn it off…but it was definitely worth watching…you can bet I’m hugging my kids a little longer tonight. And I’m going to continue to talk to them about the online dangers.

It wasn’t the best film I’ve seen, and not really “enjoyable.” But it was a good film and definitely worth the rent for parents.

No, but parents need to. There is strong language and sexual situations (no nudity).

Conversation Starter
Of course we don’t recommend this movie for kids/teenagers but you can use the following questions to dialogue with your child/student about this very serious topic.

Take a few minutes to read the following article: written by Dr. Jim Burns.

Three Simple Questions (with Answers You May Be Looking for):

Q: What’s the message/theme of this movie?

A: The theme of this movie deals with the dangers and consequences of online chat rooms.

Q: How do you suppose we—as serious Christ-followers—should react to this movie?
A: We need to understand that these dangers are very real and take necessary action to protect ourselves from online predators.

Read Matthew 10:16 “Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves.”

What do you think it means to be sent out as sheep among wolves?

What are some ways we can be shrewd as snakes while still being harmless as doves?

Q: How can we move from healthy, Bible-based opinions about this movie to actually living out those opinions?
A: So let’s talk a little bit about how we can protect ourselves online.

Discuss some of the positive aspects of the internet?

Discuss some of the negative aspects of the internet?

Have you ever experienced any of those?

What would you do if you did experience them?

Close by discussing your “House Rules” about online activity and then praying.

Todd Pearage Todd Pearage is a movie buff at heart, but he's not your traditional film critic. Todd is a blue collar film geek, from his job years ago at Blockbuster to his heartfelt online movie reviews. But Todd isn't just a film geek. He has worked with middle and high school students since 1991 as a youth pastor and is currently on staff at Calvary Church in Souderton, PA. Todd and his wife Lynda have three children, Brianna, Caleb and Addyson.

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