THE FAMILY is a limited series from Netflix that claims to “expose” members of “The Fellowship” (also referred to as “The Family), the Christian organization that organizes the National Prayer Breakfast. Each of the five episodes of THE FAMILY centers on a different topic involving the Fellowship and its interactions with governments in both the United States and abroad. The series is put together with talking-head interviews and actor portrayals of events from Sharlet descriptions. Christian viewers should remind themselves that documentaries are created with biases, and THE FAMILY serves as a prime example. Discerning viewers will note that some of the archival footage is edited deceptively, without proper context. Also, the actors who play Christians in the reenactments appear socially inept, strange and unbelievable.
Based on a biased book by Jeff Sharlet, THE FAMILY contains strong Christian, biblical elements with depictions of prayer and other Christian practices. However, it often depicts Bible-believing Christian conservatives as power-hungry elitists and hypocrites. As such, it presents a very strong anti-Christian, humanist view of its subject. THE FAMILY is a false, abhorrent piece of bigotry.
THE FAMILY is a bigoted limited series from Netflix that centers on “exposing” members of “The Fellowship” (also referred to as “The Family), a Christian organization that seeks to witness Christian values at the highest positions of political power. Those values are, of course, the fruit of the Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, and self-control. THE FAMILY is based on a book written by Jeff Sharlet and is stylistically put together with talking-head interviews and actor portrayals of past events from Sharlet’s descriptions.
Each of the five episodes of THE FAMILY centers on a different topic involving the Fellowship and their interactions with governments in both the U.S. and abroad. The first episode sets the stage for Sharlet’s direct ties to the Fellowship when he lived in a group home with young Christian men, outside of D.C., who are optimistic about rallying in serving others in the name of Jesus.
The next three episodes take a look into the “corruption” of the National Prayer Breakfast and its ripple effects around the globe. They also examine the Fellowship’s shortcomings when it comes to various sins, and how they supposedly treat other powerful leaders in their thirst for political control, allegedly by secretly implementing uplifting faith and family values into government.
THE FAMILY concludes with a look into the current landscape of the Fellowship and other branches of the organization across the country. Viewers should bear in mind that the final episode blatantly hopes to expose the Fellowship and many conservative evangelicals for putting their trust in President Donald Trump, who the filmmakers contend is a crafty leader comparable to a “wolf.”
THE FAMILY is based on a book written by Jeff Sharlet and is stylistically put together with talking-head interviews and actor portrayals of purportedly recreated events from Sharlet’s descriptions. That said, Christian viewers should remind themselves that documentaries, on the whole, are created with biases, and THE FAMILY serves as a prime example. Discerning viewers will note that some archival footage is edited without proper context, and the actors who play Christians appear socially inept and strange.
Oddly, THE FAMILY showcases some strong Christian, biblical elements with depictions of prayer and other Christian practices. However, in the process of doing this, THE FAMILY ultimately promotes a very strong anti-Christian, humanist, politically bigoted worldview that misrepresents Christian conservatives in a cult-like fashion as power-hungry elitists. As such, THE FAMILY is a false, abhorrent piece of bigoted propaganda.
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