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ELEANOR’S BENCH: Episode 1.1-3

What You Need To Know:

ELEANOR’S BENCH is a dramatic series on Pure Flix. It tells the story of Eleanor Thomas, a stubborn juvenile court judge. Eleanor is faced with the trying case of a mother fighting to keep her son from becoming a ward of the State. The mother, Jewels, comes from the same struggling neighborhood where Eleanor grew up, and where her aging father still resides. In the first three episodes, Eleanor works to keep her personal and professional lives in balance as they clash over this heart-wrenching case.

ELEANOR’S BENCH is well-produced, with unique cinematography and a masterful use of props and sets. Karen Abercrombie delivers a gripping performance in the title role. The first three episodes promote the principle of doing the right thing, even when various factors make that difficult. They also place a high value on family in general and stress that positive relationships between parents and children are central to a healthy life and necessary for personal fulfillment. There is some minor violence, and characters face difficult challenges. However, ELEANOR’S BENCH depicts these things as a byproduct of people’s sinful nature.

Content:

(BBB, V, AA, M):

Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Very strong moral worldview promotes the principle of people doing the right thing even when it’s hard, places a high value on family in general, and stresses that positive relationships between parents and children are central to a healthy life and necessary for personal fulfillment

Foul Language:
No foul language

Violence:
Light violence includes gunfire overheard in a bad neighborhood, a flashback implies a woman’s been shot, and a man is wheeled away from a house on a gurney, covered with a shroud, and is later referred to as having been murdered by his girlfriend

Sex:
No sex

Nudity:
No nudity

Alcohol Use:
There’s a reference to alcohol abuse

Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
No smoking or drugs; and,

Miscellaneous Immorality:
Families are shown in various state of crisis or dysfunction, but all wrongdoing is explicitly acknowledged in the script, and Eleanor deals out “tough love” to encourage people to do better, both for themselves and for their families.

More Detail:

ELEANOR’S BENCH is a dramatic series on Pure Flix about a stubborn juvenile court judge faced with the trying case of a mother fighting to keep her son from becoming a ward of the State while she herself tries to deal with her aging father. The first three episodes of ELEANOR’S BENCH are well produced, feature a gripping performance by Karen Abercrombie in the title role of the judge, promote doing the right thing even when various factors make that difficult, and stresses strong family relationships, especially between parents and children.

The first three episodes introduce Eleanor Thomas, a stubborn juvenile court judge. Eleanor is faced with the trying case of a mother fighting to keep her son from becoming a ward of the State. The mother, Jewels, comes from the same struggling neighborhood where Eleanor grew up, and where Eleanor’s aging father still resides. Eleanor works to keep her personal and professional lives in balance as they clash over this heart-wrenching case.

In Episode One, Eleanor takes on the case of Jewels and Drayvon, a mother and son about to be separated by the State, in an attempt to stop the cycle of brokenness in Eleanor’s old neighborhood. Meanwhile, her father’s health takes a turn for the worse, though he insists on refusing help.

The pervasive issues of Eleanor’s neighborhood become clearer in the second episode as she gets more deeply involved with Jewels and Drayvon’s case. She fears for her father even more as violence breaks out in his neighborhood, and he stubbornly resists leaving.

Jewels and Drayvon’s case gets more complicated in Episode Three after Jewels takes drastic steps to protect her son. Eleanor is haunted by her memories of Jewels’ own mother, whom Eleanor saw murdered in that same neighborhood years ago.

Though independently produced and distributed on Pure Flix, ELEANOR’S BENCH could easily be a network television series. It is well-produced, with unique cinematography and a masterful use of props and sets to accentuate the story. Karen Abercrombie, Grace Prize award-winner at the MOVIEGUIDE® Awards for 2015’s WAR ROOM, delivers a gripping performance in the title role.

That said, the program does struggle a bit with its core concept, spending little time on the actual “bench” with Eleanor and more time on the ancillary storylines of her father’s health issues and Jewels’ relationship with her son, Drayvon. If the protagonist had more screentime and more opportunities to demonstrate her implied extraordinary intelligence and determination, the first three episodes would have more of a clear focus. Also, much of the legal process depicted in the show doesn’t seem accurate to real life. Even so, ELEANOR’S BENCH is written with such heart that even the most jaded aficionado of the legal drama will find themselves drawn to its stalwart heroine and moved by Jewels’ and Drayvon’s powerful story of a family determined to stay close to one another.

Although there are few to no direct mentions of Christianity in the first three episodes of ELEANOR’S BENCH, Eleanor upholds a strong sense of conscience. For example, she works tirelessly for the good of each person who comes into her courtroom. The first three episodes promote the principle of doing the right thing, even when various factors make that difficult. They also place a high value on family in general and stress that positive relationships between parents and children are central to a healthy life and necessary for personal fulfillment. There is some minor violence, and characters face difficult challenges in Eleanor’s beleaguered neighborhood. However, ELEANOR’S BENCH depicts these things as a byproduct of people’s sinful nature.

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4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.

Movieguide® is a 501c3 and all donations are tax deductible.