Finding Forgiveness for the Heavy Hearted
Country singer, Jake Reeson (Joel Smallbone) has it all; the looks, the voice and an eye for the ladies. But Jake's attitude constantly causes problems, not only for himself but for his friends in the band who have to deal with him being unreliable. But a series of events force Jake to take a long hard look at his life when first his former girlfriend, Becca (Kerry Knuppe), reappears in his life but won't let his charm just win her over. And then he has an encounter with Bo (Billy Ray Cyrus - Christmas Comes Home to Canaan), who he doesn't realise is his father having been told by his mum, Mia (Jennifer Taylor - Emma's Chance), that his father died many years ago to protect him from who Bo was.
It seems like if you want to be a country singer you need to have a big ego, suffered a fall from grace, hit the bottle and sought redemption and forgiveness. Or at least that is how it often comes across as pretty much every fictional movie I have come across about a country singer revolves around their tormented soul. But that isn't a criticism as there is something quite watchable about a musician who has gone off the rails and is in need of forgiveness and redemption. That forgiveness and redemption storyline is ideal for faith based, Christian cinema and that is exactly what "Like a Country Song" is, it is a Christian drama from CMD Distribution.
Now "Like a Country Song" has a few different angles going on with drama surrounding four interconnected people. On one hand we have Jake, a talented singer, whose ego is likely going to cause him to self destruct and is running from something even if he doesn't realise it. Then there is his mother who has lied to Jake about his father all his life having never forgiven him for something, the father who is a tortured soul as he deals with a drink problem as well as his past. And then their is Jake's former girlfriend who is part of the church and who remembers how Jake once was before his ego took over but won't fall for his charms like she once did. All of which sets up not only a drama which has mystery through the secrets and lies but also brings up the Christian elements of forgiveness and redemption through Christ.
The thing is that whilst "Like a Country Song" is certainly watchable and benefits from recognizable actors such as Billy Ray Cyrus and Jennifer Taylor it isn't perfect. It has a slow, disjointed feel as it switches between the different characters which is heightened further by the fact that production wise this has the look of a movie lacking cutting edge cameras which would make it sharp. But it is still watchable and as entertainment for an already Christian audience it is clean with a good message at its heart with aspects of grit which whilst not completely realistic are less sugar coated than you get in some Christian cinema.
What this all boils down to is that "Like a Country Song" is a good movie for a Christian audience and I would say especially for those who have just become Christian as it isn't full on Bible thumping.