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Family crisis brings prayer, priorities into focus Print Email
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Tuesday, 19 October 2010 04:17 PM America/New_York

PG drama shows 'God at work' as community unites to find missing boy


TheWayHome_DVDThe day he faced every parent's greatest fear—a child gone missing—brought faith and family firmly back into focus for Ray Simpkins and has been recreated in a drama sharing his lessons of hope and misplaced priorities.

Former TV Superman Dean Cain portrays the helpless, distraught father in The Way Home (0-31398-12452-8, $19.98) from Red Five Entertainment, released on DVD last month.

Filmed on location in Georgia where the events occurred in 2000, the movie recalls how 2-year-old Joe Simpkins went missing while being watched by his father, who gets distracted. The disappearance prompted a search joined by hundreds of local residents and provoked Ray Simpkins to reevaluate what was really important in his life and rediscover the power of prayer.

"For the world at large, it was a cool news story on the television that night and then it went out of everybody's head," said writer-director Lance Dreesen of the events. "But for the family, it was a life changing, spiritually transforming event—nothing could be bigger."

The Simpkins' experience came to Dreesen's attention when he met the family while in Georgia filming another movie. Dreesen believed that the story could speak to others about making their family a priority and inspire them as they saw "how God was at work."

The PG-rated film includes details of a twist to the real-life events unknown until Dreesen started research for his screenplay—a profoundly touching personal moment for one of the local residents who played a significant part in the search.

Central and supporting figures in the actual events make cameo appearances in the film, which also stars Lori Beth Edgeman (Army Wives) as mom Christal Simpkins and Sonny Shroyer (Forrest Gump). Extras include a 26-minute featurette, "The Inspirational True Story."

Running 90 minutes and rated PG, the film is distributed to Christian retail stores through Thomas Nelson.

To order, call 800-251-4000.