STAND YOUR GROUND

"What God Can Do When We Listen and Wait for Him"

Quality:
Content: -1 Discretion advised for older children.

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Violence
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What You Need To Know:

STAND YOUR GROUND is inspired by true events in the life of Jackie Carpenter, whose son was falsely accused of murder. Jackie vows to do all she can to see her son, Jason, out of jail and back home. Throughout the trial, Jackie, Jason, and their whole family’s faith is tested. Finally, Jason himself testifies. For the first time, viewers find out what happened the night of the murder. After compelling closing arguments from lawyers on both sides, what will the jury decide?

The production quality of STAND YOUR GROUND is good. It has a clear message communicated by both Jackie and her son to “stand your ground” and fight for what you believe. Jackie’s character evolves into a person who learns to listen to God’s voice. This gives her a great character arc. Of course, STAND YOUR GROUND has a very strong Christian worldview that urges people to put their faith and trust in God through Jesus Christ. However, there is brief violence. So, STAND YOUR GROUND warrants caution for older children.

Content:

(CCC, BBB, VV, M) Very strong Christian worldview as woman prays to God and visits church with Christian cross in the pulpit, man is a Christian minister, the Bible is read, and Psalms are referenced, and woman plays piano while singing hymn;  brief strong violence includes prison inmate gets bullied and beat up by men in jail at showers, a man is shot and blood splatters on van and another man’s face; no sex’ upper male nudity of men in showers; no alcohol use; no smoking or drugs; and, married couple quarrels, lying, and a police office is a bad role model.

More Detail:

STAND YOUR GROUND is inspired by true events in the life of Jackie Carpenter, whose son was accused of murder.

The story takes place in Georgia and opens with green farm country and a quaint little town. Jackie Carpenter (Francine Locke) and her husband Larry Carpenter (Darrel Ervin) are fairly wealthy with a nice home. Jackie has two adult sons. Jim (John Dollar), her eldest, is a minister, and Jason (Drew Matthews), the younger brother, is in real estate.

Jason’s properties in a new development have been robbed 17 times so. Against his mother’s wishes, he decides he’ll go and keep watch at night to see if he can catch the robbers and call the police. Jackie and Larry get a call that Jason has been arrested for murder, and their peaceful world turns into chaos.

It’s an emotional time as the family speaks to him through the glass at the jail. Jason’s wife, Stephanie, struggles, not knowing what to say to their 6-year-old son. Jackie vows to do all she can to see her son out of jail and back home.

Throughout STAND YOUR GROUND, Jackie, Jason, and their whole family’s faith is tested. Initially, Jason is charged with felony murder. However, the charges are reduced due to the fact that they were given to Jason by an unethical policeman later released from duty because of his constant poor behavior. Eventually, his charges would be dropped to voluntary manslaughter, and he would have only three to five years in prison, if only he pleads guilty. Or, he could let it go to trial and be at the mercy of the jury.

Jason and Stephanie believe God wants Jason to choose the trial. Jackie still tries hard to take matters into her own hands. However, after a potentially fatal car accident on the way to the lawyer’s office, she finally accepts she is powerless, and all she can do is to meditate on the book of Psalms and trust God. The lawyer and family suggest Jackie not take her Bible to the trial because it may offend a juror. She stands her ground and takes her Bible anyway and is greeted by supporting friends and community who have brought scriptures in Psalms with them into the courtroom.

Eventually, as the trial continues in STAND YOUR GROUND, Jason himself goes to testify. For the first time, the viewers find out what happened that night.

Now, what will the jury decide?

The production quality of STAND YOUR GROUND is fairly good. The movie also has a clear message communicated by both Jackie and Jason to “stand your ground” and fight for what you believe against all the odds. Jackie’s character evolves into one who learned to listen to God. This gives her a great character arc. Of course, STAND YOUR GROUND has a very strong Christian worldview that urges people to put their faith and trust in God through Jesus Christ. However, there is brief violence, so caution is advised for older children.

Spiritually speaking, much can be said about how faith can enable people to trust God when they feel letting go seems to make them weaker or powerless. Just like Jackie, people go through situations they can’t change or influence. Yet, in those moments, if people can let go, having done all they could – even when they made a mistake – if they allow God, He will intervene, carry them in the midst of that trial, and bring them through to a place of peace and safety. So, the next time you “stand your ground,” let God carry you.

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