Christian Retailing

New DVD Releases January 2014 Print Email
Written by DeWayne Hamby   
Tuesday, 24 December 2013 08:35 AM America/New_York

BonhoefferBonhoeffer, the 2011 ECPA Christian Book of the Year, is the inspiration for the new DVD Bonhoeffer: A Four-Session Study on the Life and Writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer by Eric Metaxas ($26.99), releasing Jan. 28 from Thomas Nelson. Filmed on location in Germany, the four-part series hosted by Metaxas will explore how Bonhoeffer impacted his community during World War II and how his faith has influenced the church since. Sessions include “Life Together” and “Religionless Christianity.”


Jeremy Lin, the NBA basketball star known for his outspoken Christian faith, is the subject of the documentary Linsanity ($19.99, ARC Entertainment/Provident Distribution) releasing Jan. 7. The film spotlights the rising popularity of Lin, who proved himself in a crucial New York Knicks game, scoring more points in his first start than any other player in modern history. The film scored the second-biggest per-screen box office when it was released to theaters in October. 


ImInLoveWithAChurchGirlJeff “Ja Rule” Atkins, Adrienne Bailon, Stephen Baldwin, Vincent Pastore, Michael Madsen and TobyMac star in I’m  Love With In a Church Girl, releasing on DVD ($19.99) and Blu-ray ($29.99) Jan. 21 from Reverence Gospel Media Films (Capitol Christian Distribution). Based on a true story, the film follows a drug trafficker who falls in love with
a devoted Christian woman. The film released to theaters in October. 

Kirk Cameron’s ‘visual journal’ raises the ultimate question Print Email
Written by DeWayne Hamby   
Tuesday, 24 December 2013 08:30 AM America/New_York

Actor-director’s successful documentary was born out of the loss of his teenage friend

UnstoppableKirk Cameron (Growing Pains, Fireproof, Left Behind) tackles one of life’s most significant questions—why God allows suffering—in his new documentary, Unstoppable (602341006293, $17.99), arriving on DVD Jan. 28 from Provident Films. Described as a “visual journal,” the film blends Cameron’s narration with dramatic creative vignettes. 

“Why doesn’t God alleviate pain and suffering?” Cameron asks in the film’s opening moments. “I want to answer that question to the extent that I think we can based on what we know from experience and history and from God’s Word.”

The direction of the film was inspired by the death of Cameron’s 15-year-old friend Matthew, who participated in Camp Firefly, a camp for terminally ill kids started by Cameron and his wife, Chelsea Noble. 

“When he passed, I found myself asking the question, ‘Why, God, didn’t You heal Matthew when I know You can heal him? Where were You in the middle of this?’ ” Cameron said. “On my way to his funeral and burial, I took cameras with me and documented the whole process and then looked back in the Bible to find where God is since the fall and the garden of Eden, tower of Babel, crucifixion—where is God in the midst of all this terrible tragedy and what’s He doing?”

Dramatic elements are used in the film, including Cameron leading a discussion on the proper way to put the story of Noah on film. In the middle of the discussion of such a serious, heart-wrenching topic, the vignette provides some comic relief.

“The movie needed a little lightening up, so we wanted to put some humor in there,” he said. “It was the riskiest part of the whole movie.”

Cameron enlisted Liberty University as a production partner, and it also served as the location for the film’s simulcast premiere party through NCM Fathom Events. Billed as a “one-night only” live event, most theaters sold out of tickets, scheduled a second-night showing and the documentary bested movies such as Gravity and Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 in per-screen averages. The film grossed $3.2 million on 700 screens. 

“We didn’t have any kind of a marketing and promotional budget to speak of, and we were only on one showing of each of those nights,” Cameron said. “It was the biggest one night in NCM Fathom Events’ history.”

To order Unstoppable, call 800-333-900 or visit

Rebecca St. James, Shirley Jones star in ‘A Strange Brand of Happy’ Print Email
Written by DeWayne Hamby   
Monday, 11 November 2013 10:42 AM America/New_York

‘Partridge Family’ actress and husband Marty Ingels appear together in movie for first time

AStrangeBrandOfHappyA young professional struggles with unemployment, romance and the existence of God in A Strange Brand of Happy (095163885625, $19.95), releasing on DVD this month from Bridgestone Multimedia Group. 

David, played by Joe Boyd, is let go from his company and, under duress, hires a life coach, Joyce, played by Christian recording artist and actress Rebecca St. James (Left Behind, Sarah’s Choice). 

David soon finds himself competing with his ex-boss for Joyce’s affections and being coached in ways to win her over by a group of nursing home residents, including Mildred—Academy Award-winning actress Shirley Jones (The Partridge Family). Jones’ husband, Marty Ingels (CSI, ER, Baywatch) is in the role of Mack, another nursing home resident. The film marks the first time Jones and Ingels have appeared together in a movie. 

When Joyce takes David to an open mic night of people contemplating the existence of God, something said by one poet—National Poetry Slam Champion Anis Mojgani, appearing as himself—provokes David to begin questioning who he is and his relationship to God. 

As he begins to reconcile his faith, the competition for Joyce from his former boss turns extreme, and David is forced to, once again, find wisdom and counsel in his unexpected friends, the retirement home residents. 

David Wise, the film’s writer and director, met Boyd when the two worked on a Christmas short film for a megachurch in Cincinnati. Boyd is also president of Rebel Pilgrim Productions, a Cincinnati-based band of storytellers. As a struggling pastor and church planter, he began doing improvisational comedy and feels he has now tapped into what he was created to do. The storytellers’ group says that Boyd’s story provided the inspiration for the film’s theme of discovering one’s passion and purpose. 

To order A Strange Brand of Happy, contact Bridgestone Multimedia Group at 866-774-3774 or visit

Entertainment November 2013: New DVD Releases Print Email
Written by DeWayne Hamby   
Tuesday, 08 October 2013 09:55 AM America/New_York

TheRevBridgestone Media Group releases The Rev this month. The film stars John Carmen as rock-and-roll-styled evangelist Johnny Starr who takes his mother and red Cadillac to pastor a small church in upstate New York. Throughout the of the film, Starr uses his preaching to awaken the congregation while trying to save Jubilation Hall from being taken over by a local megachurch pastor. The inspirational “dramedy” features an original score by John Ellison.


JosephMichelle McKinney Hammond leads the study on pursuing dreams and choices in Joseph: Waiting on God’s Timing, Living in God’s Plan ($26.99), releasing next month from Zondervan. Hammond examines the dreams that the Old Testament figure had and the events that seemed to derail his life. In the study, viewers will discover how relationships affect their destinies, how to unite their desires with God’s purposes and how to walk faithfully with God while waiting on His timing. A study guide will be sold separately.


TheCorrieTenBoomStory-TorchlightersHolocaust survivor Corrie ten Boom’s story is related to children through the new animated feature The Corrie ten Boom Story ($14.99) in the “Torchlighters” series. The 30-minute film from Vision Video recalls the Hiding Place author’s account of saving a baby and other Jews during the Holocaust. The release includes a leader’s guide and student handouts in PDF and English and Spanish subtitles and languages. 

Church offers modern Christmas drama Print Email
Written by DeWayne Hamby   
Tuesday, 08 October 2013 09:49 AM America/New_York

‘Surrendered’ filmed in Atlanta

SurrenderedA husband and father discovers that in order to keep his family together, he must first surrender himself to God’s plan in Surrendered: The Story of Jay Harding (857533003295, $14.99), to be released Nov. 5 from PureFlix Entertainment. 

Surrendered is the story of Jay Harding (Jay McIntyre), a man on the verge of losing everything he loves in an attempt to be the man he thinks his family needs. Even though Jay views himself as a generous, loving and selfless man, he soon learns that everyone around him sees him as greedy, manipulative and selfish. His marriage is failing; his children need discipline; and his friends try to help him through his struggles. 

By focusing all of his energy and efforts on that dream, Jay begins to lose sight of the things that really matter in life. With his finances failing, his marriage on the rocks and a sudden tragedy threatening to send him into a downward spiral, Jay soon realizes that the only way to keep his family together is to trust that God will guide them through the darkness and instill them with the strength to endure—even when it seems as if all hope is lost. 

With Christmas quickly approaching and in a sweeping attempt to redeem himself, Jay launches out on a quest to purchase a dream home as a present for his family. With this ultimate gift as his sole focus, he pushes himself to make it happen no matter the cost to himself and to those around him. But with the tragic loss of his daughter, the pain of a broken marriage and the devastation of financial ruin, Jay is forced to make the biggest decision of his life, the choice to surrender. 

Surrendered was produced by the Church at Chapel Hill in Douglasville, Ga., with a budget of around $15,000. It was written, directed and edited by Brett Divine and filmed in the Atlanta area featuring volunteers from the church. 

To order, contact Capitol Christian Distribution at 800-251-3052 or visit

Entertainment: New Releases Print Email
Written by DeWayne Hamby   
Thursday, 05 September 2013 03:44 PM America/New_York

MyHope-BillyGrahamMy Hope: Songs Inspired by the Message and Mission of Billy Graham (Sparrow Records/Capitol Christian Distribution) will release Oct. 15 and retail for $13.99. A compilation of songs from artists including Michael W. Smith, TobyMac, Amy Grant, Israel Houghton, Kari Jobe, Newsboys and Matthew West, the project ties into the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s My Hope America campaign. Songs include “City On Our Knees,” “We Believe” and “The Cross Is My Confession.” 

DVD_MerryLarryVTSi Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame narrates and stars in the latest Christmas DVD from VeggieTales, Merry Larry and the True Light of Christmas ($14.99), arriving in stores Oct. 19. The story follows the title character, played by Larry the Cucumber, trying to help a coworker through a rough patch during the Christmas season, all the while helping his friends discover what’s really important. The VeggieTales brand has sold more than $1.2 billion in retail revenue, including 63 million videos. 

TheNativityBridgestone Multimedia Group releases two Christmas-themed DVDs this month, The Nativity ($19.95, 92 minutes) and Christmas Oranges ($19.95, 100 minutes). The Nativity stars Gayle Bedall, Claudio Brook and Guillermo Murray in a dramatic recreation of the life of Christ. Christmas Oranges stars Edward Herrman and Nancy Stafford along with Bailee Johnson in the role of Rose, an orphan looking to find friendship while struggling with challenges at her orphanage during the holidays.