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WE THE PEOPLE

"Toward a More Perfect Union"

What You Need To Know:

WE THE PEOPLE is a documentary from Providence Forum. It recounts the story of that remarkable document, the United States Constitution. It brings in some excellent authorities on American history, including Os Guinness, Judge Darrell White, and the late Walter E, Williams of George Mason University. Beyond this, speakers such as Dr. Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King, Jr., and Rev. Billy Falling, a Native American pastor, are key.

The documentary is much less rushed and repetitive than GEORGE WASHINGTON, another Providence Forum documentary with similar themes. Its pacing is much better and livelier. The speakers who drive the documentary forward are well chosen and eloquent. They provide an excellent picture of how Christianity and the Bible indelibly shaped the United States. The movie has a strong Christian, biblical worldview. WE THE PEOPLE is an unabashed attempt to show the Christian roots of America, its Founding Fathers, its Constitution, and its people. The movie is free of objectionable content. Movieguide® recommends this movie for all ages but the young, who might find some talk of slavery and abuse of Indians upsetting.

Content:

(CCC, BBB, V, M):

Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Very strong Christian, biblical worldview with many positive references to Scripture, prayer to the God of the Bible, humility, and biblical morality;

Foul Language:
No foul language;

Violence:
Some discussion of slavery and treatment of Native Americans may be disturbing to younger audiences;

Sex:
No sex;

Nudity:
No nudity;

Alcohol Use:
No alcohol use;

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

Miscellaneous Immorality:
Talk of the incongruity of the Founding Fathers and Founding Documents in relation to slavery.

More Detail:

WE THE PEOPLE is a documentary on Providence Forum that recounts the story of the remarkable document, the Constitution of the United States. It brings in some excellent authorities on modern history such as Os Guinness, Judge Darrell White and the late Dr. Walter E. William of George Mason University. Beyond this, speakers such as Dr. Alveda King, niece of MLK, and Rev. Billy Falling, a Native American pastor, are key. Their unique position and status makes them some of the only voices today able to say things such as, “I’m proud to be an American despite some problematic parts of the American past.” Together these speakers offer a narrative of the nation that is rare indeed. The topics touched upon included the Founding Fathers, the Constitution, its heart and production, the issues of slavery, Indian Affairs, and what it means to be an American. However, perhaps the most important topic is the movie’s holding out hope that 21st Century America, if it returns to its Judeo-Christian foundations, can expect to be better than it was in the 19th or 20th Centuries.

Overall, the documentary has a single aim, which it accomplishes. It is much less rushed and repetitive than GEORGE WASHINGTON, another Providence Forum documentary with similar themes. Its pacing is much better and livelier. The speakers who drive the documentary forward are well chosen and eloquent. They provide an excellent picture of how Christianity and the Bible indelibly shaped the United States. In an engaging 57 minutes, the documentary tackles many important issues from a perspective that’s far too often unheard in the 21st Century. The music and narration is rousing and more varied than other Providence movies. Overall, WE THE PEOPLE is a movie that will put some much needed perspective in our time.

WE THE PEOPLE has a strong Christian, biblical worldview. It’s an unabashed attempt to show the Christian roots of America, its Founding Fathers, its Constitution, and its people. The section on the Founding Fathers and their tutelage under Rev. John Witherspoon, a strong Scottish Presbyterian, is key. Witherspoon is a primary reason for the uniqueness of the American Revolution. The biblical view, that man was fallen and sinful, was the antithesis of the spirit that fueled the French Revolution of 1789. This was the reason that there could not be two revolutionary movements so opposed to each others’ ethos. As Benjamin Franklin said, Americans were given a “Republic” by the grace of God; it only remains to be seen “if [we] can keep it.” Considered the least religious of the Founding Fathers, Franklin was the one who, in the midst of a deadlock of frustration at the Constitutional Convention, called for a time of prayer to guide those present. Perhaps, he should be the last word here:

I have lived, Sir, a long time and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth – that God governs in the affairs of men. And, if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without [H]is notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without [H]is aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings that “except the Lord build they labor in vain that build it.” I firmly believe this; and, I also believe that without [H]is concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the Builders of Babel. . . . I therefore beg leave to move that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the Clergy of this City be requested to officiate in that service.

WE THE PEOPLE is free of foul language, violence or sexual material. MOVIEGUIDE® recommends this this movie for all ages but the young, who might find the talk of slavery and Trail of Tears upsetting.


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