A Child of the King
Starring: LeToya Luckett, Sharif Atkins,
Durrell “Tank” Babbs,
Tammy Townsend, Greg Alan
Williams, Clifton Powell, Ella
Joyce, Essence Atkins, and
Audience: Teenagers and adults
Runtime: 101 minutes
Distributor: Warner Premiere/Warner Bros.
Director: Stan Foster
Executive Producer: Richard J. Cook and Marc
Producer: Darryl Taja, Matthew Crouch,
and Stan Foster
Writer: Stan Foster
Address Comments To:Jeffrey L. Bewkes, CEO, Time Warner
Diane Nelson, President
A subsidiary of Warner Bros. Studios and Time Warner
4000 Warner Blvd.
Burbank, CA 91522-0001
Phone: (818) 954-6000
The movie opens in Augusta, Georgia, where members of a local church gather for Sunday worship. Angie King, the pastor’s daughter (played by talented newcomer LeToya Luckett), is the choir’s soloist. The young worship leader, Wynton (played by Sharif Atkins from TV’s ER), likes Angie from afar.
Wynton convinces Angie to come see a Christian play touring the country on the so-called “chitlin circuit” in African-American communities. She shows up with her friend, Marcia, but becomes enamored by the play’s male lead, Devlin.
The next day, to her father’s consternation, Angie leaves home to go on the road in the play as the female lead’s understudy. Bishop King is a widower who has always been doted on by Angie since the death of his wife, her mother. He tells Angie that, if she walks out the door, she should not return home again.
On the road with the play, Angie learns that the cast and crew don’t live up to the Christian values expressed in the play they’re doing, especially Devlin. Devlin seduces her anyway, however, and they start living together in the same hotel rooms, despite warnings by the play’s director, Ike.
Devlin soon gets bored with Angie. He starts abusing her, but Angie stays, partly because she’s also seduced by Devlin’s promise that he will help her get a singing contract with a music producer he knows when the play gets to New York City. At one point, however, Devlin even takes back up with the play’s female lead, Desiree, to punish Angie.
Things come to a head in New York, where Devlin is supposed to meet with the music producer. At the same time, Wynton is taking the choir to compete in Gospelfest at the Apollo Theater. Will Devlin’s final lie to Angie be exposed? Can Angie return home?
The first half of PREACHER’S KID seems to suffer sometimes from what is probably a lower-than-average budget, especially when compared to such big Hollywood musicals like NINE or DREAMGIRLS. Thus, the photography is just serviceable at times, there are a few editing glitches, and one major scene in the first act is performed badly.
Otherwise, however, the acting varies from fine to excellent, the script is well structured, and the third act soars to an emotional high with very clever writing and crowd-pleasing acting flourishes. Even better, the music by Tim Miner is worthy of producing a couple crossover hits, and the singing by the cast is just as good as almost everything you will hear in NINE or DREAMGIRLS. LeToya Luckett is a real star in the making. Her final duet with Sharif Atkins should be a big hit for both of them.
Best of all, of course (unlike NINE, and even DREAMGIRLS), the ending of PREACHER’S KID has an inspiring, feel-good message of Christian hope, deliverance from sin, repentance, forgiveness, and reconciliation. As Bishop King tells Angie, “You are a child of the King,” a reference to Jesus Christ and His divine authority over all human beings, especially those who repent from their sins and turn to Him.
The movie’s references to sexual immorality and marijuana smoking require caution for children. There are also some mostly light obscenities. See our CONTENT section in the credits section for more details.
The first half of PREACHER’S KID suffers from the lower-than-average budget. The photography is sometimes just serviceable, there are a few editing glitches, and one major scene is performed badly. Otherwise, however, the acting is mostly excellent and the third act soars to an emotional high. Also, the music by Tim Miner is wonderful, and the cast’s singing exceeds expectations. Best of all, the ending has an inspiring Christian message of hope, repentance, deliverance from sin, forgiveness, and reconciliation. Some of the subject matter requires caution for children, however.