Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Octavia Spencer Plays God In Drama, 'The Shack'

By Darlene Donloe

Octavia Spencer looked like a goddess on Oscar night. This week she is actually playing God in the new faith-based film, The Shack, out in theaters Friday, March 3.

Whatever your belief symptom, this three-hanky drama will leave you emotionally drained.

The story is about a family that suffers an unimaginable tragedy and how they come to terms with that horrific incident.

The father, Mack, played by Sam Worthington, loses his way and his faith after the tragedy.  He begins to question his lifelong and innermost beliefs. While in the midst of his grief, he receives a mysterious letter in his mailbox that urges to him to come to an abandoned shack in the Oregon wilderness.

What Mack finds there is incredible and life-changing. Living in the shack are three strangers, including a woman named Papa (Octavia Spencer).

Papa and her two co-horts try to lead Mack back to his faith.  She wants him to understand that in the midst of this tragedy, she never left him.  The trio tries to show him the truth by transforming his anger and grief.

The Shack is about redemption, love and forgiveness. It’s about how a family and in particular, this father, finds his way back after falling into a deep depression.

The Shack is based on William Paul Young’s New York Times best-selling novel by the same name. It takes us along a father’s transformative and uplifting spiritual journey that will show him the ultimate truth about love, loss, and understanding.  

Originally published in 2007, The Shack follows a man (Worthington) whose youngest daughter is abducted during a family vacation. Evidence found in an abandoned shack leads authorities to believe she was murdered. Four years later, the man receives a note, apparently from God (Spencer), inviting him back to the shack. Against his better judgment, he accepts an invitation that will change his life forever.

This is a touching drama with solid performances by the entire cast. Watching this film just may change one’s beliefs.

Definitely visit The Shack.

The Shack, directed by Stuart Hazeldine, stars Octavia Spencer, Sam Worthington, Tim McGraw, Avraham Aviv Alush, Radha Mitchell, Alice Braga, Sumire, Amelie Eve, Megan Charpentier, Gage Munroe with Graham Greene.  The screenplay is by John Fusco, Andrew Lanham and Destin Cretton. Based on the book by William Paul Young, in collaboration with Wayne Jacobsen and Brad Cummings.  The film is produced by Gil Netter and Brad Cummings. Summit Entertainment presents a Gil Netter/ Windblown Media production.

Running time: 132 min. Rated: PG-13 For thematic material including some violence. 

On the DONLOE SCALE: D (don’t bother), O (oh, no), N (needs work), L (likeable), O (oh, yeah) and E (excellent), The Shack gets an E (excellent).

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