"Tale of the Anabaptists"
What You Need To Know:
Developing slowly, this story is enhanced by the use of location settings, many extras in costume, and an accurate portrayal of the ambience of the 16th century. What makes this movie unique is the support of Mennonite congregations in the U.S. and Canada to underwrite the cost of production. MOVIEGUIDE(r) strongly recommends THE RADICALS.
(CC, BB, VV) Christian worldview with strong moral elements though the Anabapist theology is rejected by other Christian theological groups; and, violence, including burning at the stake.
THE RADICALS is set in 1525 where The Austrian Empire is fighting offensive wars on several fronts and a defensive war against the Turks. Lord Eberhard Hoffman is in no mood to put up with dissenters from within like the Anabaptists. Their simple belief that baptism is something only an adult can choose for himself after a public confession of sin and faith, not something one does to babies too young to know God, has led them to question the authority of the state in religious matters. They demand a political separation of church and state, where each sphere has its own independent polity under the governance of God. Therefore, they refuse to raise their swords against the Empire’s enemies.
When the monk, Michael Sattler, witnesses Hoffman burning a printer, who published an article of faith, at the stake, Michael is transformed. No longer willing to do Hoffman’s bidding, he leaves the Roman church and marries Margaretha, who values commitment to Christ and the poor as much as he.
Sattler meets Wilhem Reublin, an Anabaptist who publicly debated his beliefs in Zurich, and was banished. Reublin tries to persuade Sattler to join him, but the former monk is convinced that his battle will be won with faith, not swords. Despite his reluctance to join the Anabaptists, Sattler is imprisoned until he signs a paper saying he has no ties to the so-called heretics.
Released, Sattler becomes the voice of the new movement, hundreds of peasants following him in his beliefs, while he and Reublin fight over the future of their church. Reublin believes they must have a powerful patron if they are to survive, but Sattler is convinced that allying themselves with men of power will interfere with following Christ and eventually destroy them.
Sattler triumphs in the eyes of the Anabaptists, but he is thrown into a dungeon, then put on trial by Hoffman for heresy and refusal to obey the law. Now Sattler and Margaretha have only one hope of escaping a horrible death: renouncing their belief that not even the Empire can come between man and Christ.
Developing slowly, the story is enhanced by the use of location settings, many extras in costume, and an accurate portrayal of the ambience of the 16th century. What makes this movie unique is the support of Mennonite congregations in the U.S. and Canada to underwrite the cost of production.
It is encouraging to see the church support films like this, which sets a good example of how we can bring our culture back to its Christian foundations. The Christian community should be producing dozens of feature films to make a lasting and solid impact.
MOVIEGUIDE(r) can recommend THE RADICALS without hesitation, and strongly urges everyone to see it. Without the support of Christians, films such as this cannot be made.
Please direct your comments to:
Mr. Scott Weisman
1771 Post Road East
Westport, CT 06880