Close Encounters of a Different Kind: Finding the Truth on Earth
Starring: Jonathan Aube, Josh Adamson,
Michael Blain-Rozgay, Jena
Bailey, Lance Zitron, and
Rebecca St. James
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Audience: Older children to adults
Runtime: 85 minutes
Distributor: Five & Two Pictures
Director: Rich Christiano
Producer: Rich Christiano and Alvin
Writer: Rich Christiano
Address Comments To:Mr. Rich Christiano
Christiano Film Group, Inc.
2913 El Camino Real
Tustin, CA 92782
The scene fades and transitions to the present time and to a night scene on a dark, back road in rural Texas. A man is driving his pickup home when he begins to experience static on his cell phone and interference with his truck electrical system. His truck comes to a silent stop along the side of the lonely road with a dead engine. Suddenly, a bright light appears in the night sky. It moves to engulf the truck, and the driver disappears.
At the same time, two local airport air traffic controllers spot a “UFO” on their screen in the vicinity where the truck driver disappeared. They warn off a nearby Cessna plane. Additionally, four teenagers around a camp fire telling ghost stories in the same area spot the strange activity in the sky.
Cut to the offices of "Both Sides" magazine. The staff is attempting to decide on their next series of articles. The UFO report from Texas comes over the news wire. The editor wants two reporters to check out the report. Keith (played by Jonathan Aube) and Brad (played by Josh Adamson) are assigned to investigate these strange reports of UFO sightings and alien abduction in the small Texas town. Eventually, the audience learns that Keith is a nominal, lukewarm Christian and Brad is a strongly antagonistic atheist who is obnoxiously and verbally very anti-Christian.
After the initial investigation where those involved in the Texas UFO incident mysteriously clam up or deny the event, the magazine editor decides that the report warrants a series of articles on the subject from both the pro and con perspectives. The magazine series will include a final cover issue designed to resolve the UFO controversy once and for all.
In the meantime, more UFO sightings and abductions take place. Viewers are transported to backwater Louisiana where two good ole boys are enjoying an evening of fishing. A similar light appears in the sky and moves toward the two men. One falls and disappears while the other one runs for his life.
Back home locally, a young woman is approached by the same mysterious light as she leaves her office. She runs, falls and disappears as the light engulfs her while she, fumbling with her keys, tries to open her car door.
In the midst of all this, the main abductee from Texas telephones Keith and finally agrees to tell all about his experience but not over the phone. The reporter must make a return trip to Texas.
The magazine staff expands their investigative journalism trip to include interviews with one of the two Louisiana UFO attack victims (the other is still too shaken up by the experience to talk). In this case, the interviewer adds further mystery to the story by telling about a sulfur-like strange odor during the incident.
Yet another Texas UFO abduction witness comes forward. She arrives on the scene shortly after it happened, sees the light and a strange object, examines the main victim’s abandoned truck and phones in the incident to the authorities. Without prompting, she also substantiates the sulfur odor.
As the plot progresses and the sighting/abduction interviews become more mysterious, two additional reporters help with the project, the religion editor, Darren (Michael Blain-Rozgay) and an office-bound researcher, Vince (Lance Zitron). Other Key cast members include Jenna Bailey, who plays the magazine's administrative assistant, and Rebecca St. James, the talented Christian singer, who plays Keith’s wife.
Questions are raised about UFO's. Are they real? A hoax? Are there aliens? Is there a spiritual connection? Is there an explanation?
UNIDENTIFIED has good production values are high for its low budget. Considering the budget, the special effects are, well, very effective. They draw the audience into the story and hold their attention. The dialogue is excellent. Especially well done is the movie's humor. There are lots of laughs, especially when Keith and Brad visit Texas and talk to a couple locals in the coffee shop.
The dramatic and serious parts are well handled also as the cast deals with the occult and other worldview issues. Overall, UNIDENTIFIED deals head on with unique issues that need confronting in churches today. It will be used for years to come to hone evangelism and discipleship skills and train the next generation of Christian soldiers.
One out of two people believe in UFOs. Also, over 15 million Americans claim to have seen one, and there have been more than 63,000 reported UFO sightings worldwide. Some of these sightings are by very credible witnesses such as pilots, astronauts, and even former Presidents. It is about time, therefore, that someone used this storyline in a Christian movie to direct folks to the real answers to that question.
UNIDENTIFIED does so admirably. It draws the viewer to a personal faith in Christ and spiritual growth and away from occult, pagan involvement.
UNIDENTIFIED is a worthwhile movie and ministry tool. Its production values are high. Considering the budget, the special effects are effective. They draw the audience into the story and hold their attention. The dialogue is excellent. Especially well done is the movie's humor. There are many laughs. The dramatic and serious parts are well handled also as the cast deals with occultism, paganism and other worldview issues. Overall, UNIDENTIFIED confronts unique issues that need confronting. It will be used for years to come to train the next generation of Christians.