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Jan 15, 2023

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Perhaps the definitive contemporary Christian film, this end-times thriller starring Kirk Cameron is based on bestselling novel LEFT BEHIND, which launched a series of 16 books that sold tens of millions of copies since the mid-1990s. This franchise’s vision of the end times basically created the contemporary pop cultural idea of what the rapture might look like. Rewatching LEFT BEHIND: THE MOVIE over two decades after its original release, we’re stunned by how well it holds up. It’s one of the most competent, “convincing” Christian thrillers in that it’s so “normal” and well-produced that you sometimes forget you’re watching a Christian film. Secondly, the end-times philosophy perpetuated by LEFT BEHIND still sounds incredibly current in an era where social media has decentralized conspiracy theory and created a hybrid of Biblical eschatological ideas merged with pop culture. We can’t help but find modern day analogues to this film in recent world events — from former President Trump’s acknowledgment of Jerusalem as Israel’s capitol being seen by some evangelical Christians as a harbinger of the apocalypse (and to be clear, this is a good thing) — to COVID vaccine mandates being seen as the first real test of globalist authoritarianism that would lead to the rise of the “new world order”. LEFT BEHIND: THE MOVIE is also overtly Zionist, depicting Israel as a modern-day Garden of Eden protected by the hand of God, yet constantly besieged by its enemies. But despite the heavy-handed messaging, the film is genuinely fun and at times (unintentionally?) silly. It cemented Kirk Cameron’s star status in the Christian film world, and it even throws us a little bit of Masonic imagery — for the kids!

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