Several years ago I kept hearing about a book entitled The Shack. I wasn’t really sure what the book was about, but I kept hearing really good things about it. I did end up purchasing a copy of the book, but I never read it for some odd reasons. It just got tucked away in one of our bookcases. In fact, I have no clue where the book is anymore (it must be packed away).
Fast forward to today. The book has been made into a movie by the same name (The Shack) and it’s available on Blu-ray, DVD and digital download.
The film stars Sam Worthington (Avatar), Octavia Spencer (The Help), Tim McGraw (The Blindside) and Radha Mitchell (Silent Hill).
I received a copy of the film to review.
I didn’t realize that this film had a lot to do with religion, faith and God. While it is a religious movie, there is a lot more to it than that.
Mack (Worthington) grew up in a religious household, but his beliefs and faith has always been tested, especially when his father was abusive to both him and his mother.
As an adult, Mack still struggled with the belief in God.
Mack is now happily married to Nan (Mitchell) and has two daughters and a son.
One weekend Mack took their children on a camping trip. Nan was unable to go with them due to work commitments.
During their getaway weekend a series of unfortunate events lead to the death of one of their children. The loss of his child made Mack very upset, as it would be expected. But for Mack, he was unable to move on with his life and he carried a pain in his heart that he couldn’t let go.
One day Mack discovers a letter in his mailbox requesting him to pay a visit to the shack where his child was murdered. He has no idea who the letter was from.
Mack makes the trip to the shack when his family was out of town (his wife and their remaining children). He initially finds the shack run down and vacant, but then the shack is magically transformed into a lovely home. Inside he finds three people are living there – Papa, Jesus and Sarayu. Another way of looking at them is God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
Over the course of a few days, Mack opens up to Papa, Jesus and Sarayu about the devastation he feels over the loss of his child. In return, the trio try and make Mack realize that the pain he carries is effecting his relationships with his family. They also try to make Mack forgive himself, and the man who took the life of his child. They try and help him to gain some closure and a new found perspective on things.
Will the experience change Mack for the better? Will he ever get over the loss of his child in order to improve his relationship with the rest of his family? What great words of wisdom does the trio unleash on Mack? To find out you need to pick up a copy of The Shack. Look for it where ever movies are sold.
There are some bonus features that come with the Blu-ray version.
- Audio Commentary with Director Stuart Hazeldine
- “Touched by God: A Writer’s Journey” Featurette
- “God’s Heart for Humanity” Featurette
- “”Heaven Knows”: The Power of Song with Hillsong United” Featurette
- “Something Bigger than Ourselves: The Making of The Shack” Featurette
- “Premiere Night: A Blessed Evening” Featurette
- Deleted Scene
Normally I don’t watch movies with a religious theme. It’s not that I am not a religious person (I am), it’s just that the genre doesn’t interest me as much as other genres do (horror, comedies, Sci-Fi…).
This is a very deep and thought provoking film. It did give me, the viewer, a lot to think about when it comes to forgiveness and how sometimes things happen in life that we can’t truly understand, or get past.
The cinematography is this film is beautiful. The spectacular and lush surroundings around the shack are breath taking. I do believe that it was an essential part of this film, along with the story its self.
The casting was really good. I found it peculiar that God was portrayed as an African American woman, but whose to say what God really is or looks like. He (or she?) is an entity and no one has ever seen God to know otherwise.
The Shack is an enlightening film, and you will need to keep a box of tissues on hand. It can get really “deep” and some what depressing at times.
If you would like to learn more about the film you can visit the film’s website, OwntheShack.Movie. You can also check out the film on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The official hashtag is #TheShack.
Below is the film’s trailer for your enjoyment.
*I received a free screener copy of the film to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.