THE HEART OF MAN

"God’s Love Is Our Deliverance and Our Reward"

Quality: Content: -2 "EXTREME CAUTION"
NoneLightModerateHeavy
Language
Violence
Sex
Nudity

Summary:

THE HEART OF MAN is a Christian documentary describing how eight men and women discovered God’s unconditional love is the only way out of a lifetime of sexual brokenness. Their stories, told against the backdrop of an artistic and allegorical depiction of the Prodigal Son parable, shot in Hawaii, illustrate how suffering people learn that God’s love is their deliverance and their reward at the same time.

Review:

THE HEART OF MAN is a Christian documentary describing how seven men and women discovered God’s love is the only way out of a lifetime of sexual brokenness.

Seven people, comprised of five men and two women, share their stories of being set free from shame, secrecy and using sex as a way to self-medicate their deep-seated pain. The cast includes William Paul Young, the author of the bestseller THE SHACK; therapist Dan Allender; spoken word artist Jackie Hill-Perry; author John S. Lynch, author of THE CURE; and, less famous individuals who have overcome common sexual sins. Many were molested as children. Some became addicted to pornography, serial adultery, or anonymous sexual encounters. One became a promiscuous teenager and then a lesbian. All found out that the cross is the key that unlocks their prison of guilt, doubt and sometimes suicidal depression.

The stories of abuse and abandonment in this 74-minute-long movie will bring a tear to any eye. Their experiences left them heartbroken, with no sense of self-worth, and desperate to find fulfillment any way they can. Some were molested at boarding school, others by family friends or neighborhood bullies. The experience left each person thinking sex is the only “avenue to joy,” the only means of “validation” as a human being. Their lives became an out-of-control series of compulsive porn use, one night stands, or sexual conquests. Eventually, each one describes the extreme pain they inflicted on themselves and their loved ones when they finally hit bottom, and their secrets came spilling out into the open.

As the story unfolds, each person describes how God’s unconditional love and Christ’s death upon the cross brought them spiritual freedom. Finally understanding who they are in God’s eyes freed them from the bondage of sin. After struggling against works-based religion, the day they learned that God’s love is a free gift opened a new relationship of honesty, self-forgiveness and wholeness. “The way out every single time,” one of them says, “is. . . I must believe who God says I am. I am a new creature.”

The inclusion of the eighth person, Melody Lovvorn, gives the movie an added dimension. She’s a victim of sexual brokenness inflicted by her cheating spouse. Her tale of being wronged, and how she responded, make the movie relevant to an entirely new audience largely left out of movies: those who have been cheated on by sex addicts. Her story will help this segment of the audience find healing as well.
As the documentary unfolds, actors portray a stylized and allegorical version of the Prodigal Son, set in an ancient Mediterranean kingdom. The symbolism in these scenes comes from sources as varied as “The Touch of the Master’s Hand,” the sirens of Greek mythology, and J.R.R. Tolkien, but each works on its own level. This segment features sometimes disturbing images. Nonetheless, each sequence features top-quality performance, music, and cinematography. Similarly, the use of light during the testimonials, especially that of William Paul Young, is masterful.

Words cannot convey the way THE HEART OF MAN encapsulates the unconditional love of God for all mankind in Christ Jesus. Each story illustrates how suffering people learn that God’s love is their deliverance and their reward at the same time.

THE HEART OF MAN is a compelling movie for mature viewers. Extreme caution is urged for young teenagers and pre-teenagers, both for the documentary’s subject matter and some disturbing images in the fictional scenes. Finally, any individual struggling with sexual abuse, pornography, unwanted same-sex attraction, or acting out sexually owes it to himself or herself to see this movie at once.

Content:

(CCC, BBB, L, VV, SS, N, M) Strong Christian, biblical, moral worldview of unconditional love during our sins and redemption despite our sexual brokenness, with a recitation of Psalm 139, extended discussion of God’s unconditional love, the purpose of human life as designed by the Creator, a depiction of a cross on a ring, and discussion of Jesus dying on the cross for “redemption”; obscene language includes one use each of the “s” word and the word “humping”; moderate violence includes scenes of a violent fistfight, a man being thrown violently, a man banging his own bloody head against a jagged cavern wall, a man about to murder another man with a spear, and numerous (seven) depictions of a man with severe cuts and bleeding; strong sexual content includes discussions of pornography, adultery, sexual molestation, oral sex, homosexuality, and masturbation, brief depictions of a sexual nature, a woman’s implied disrobing, an adulterous kiss while the two are implied to be nude, and an implied homosexual rape of a chained man; upper male nudity and a woman with a backless dress; and, miscellaneous scenes of a man about to drown, kissing the skeleton of a leper, and being covered with worms may disturb younger viewers.

In Brief:

THE HEART OF MAN is a Christian documentary describing how seven men and women discovered that God’s unconditional love is the only way out of a lifetime of sexual brokenness. The stories describe how the shame of sexual molestation or a mistaken self-image can lead to porn addiction, adultery, anonymous conquests, and unwanted same-sex desires. They reveal in a profound way how Gods unconditional love in Christ Jesus set them free. An eighth story tells how a cheating husband sexual addiction and infidelity affected his wife. As the documentary unfolds, actors portray an allegorical version of the Prodigal Son, set in an ancient Mediterranean kingdom and filmed in Hawaii.

THE HEART OF MAN features top-quality performances, music and cinematography. The use of light during the testimonials is masterful. Intended for teenagers and adults, THE HEART OF MAN is an important documentary for young adults, men’s groups, and any person struggling with sexual abuse, pornography, unwanted same-sex attraction, or acting out sexually. Extreme caution, of course, is advised for younger teenagers and children. THE HEART OF MAN is intended for mature audiences.