Reel Reviews | Show Me The Father

By Charles Kirkland Jr.

The latest film from the Kendrick brothers is not a narrative feature but an evangelistic documentary about the importance of fathers called Show Me The Father.

Focus on the Family’s Jim Daly has a very interesting and heartbreaking story about his father and the relationship he had with him.  But so do Pastor Tony Evans, ex-NFL running back Eddie George, and the Kendrick Brothers themselves.  All their stories and the stories of a few others are shared to point toward a specific purpose and intent for fathers that have been handed down from the greatest father of them all, God.

Directed by Rick Altizer (Russ Taff: I Still Believe) and produced by the Kendrick Brothers (Courageous, War Room), Show Me The Father stars Daly, Evans, George, and the brothers Kendrick along with Jonathan Evans, Sherman Smith, and Deland McCullough.

Never short on biblical truth, this latest presentation from Alex and Stephen Kendrick does not disappoint in its content and message.  However, in this instance, biblical scripture is lighter in amount but no less focused upon communicating the life-changing, gospel-filled, evangelical message about the importance of fathers.  This time, there is a significant amount of statistical evidence that is presented to support their position.

The whole concept of this movie may sound boring and daunting but the information is nicely woven into the stories that each one of the men tells about the impact (positively and negatively) that their fathers had in their lives.  In fact, the stories may seem a little disjointed and meandering in their presentation but as the movie moves toward its conclusion, there is a surprisingly entertaining twist to the seemingly unrelated stories that almost makes the journey worth the trip.

In the past, the movies that the Kendrick’s have produced have been very heavy-handed and purposefully geared toward a particular audience.  Show Me is the first film that they have not directed but, it is still geared toward that particular audience. The difference this time is that Altizer, who has directed a number of Christian comedians in films, attempts to draw a commonality between believers and non-believers through the illustration of a need for fathers and what one looks like.  In the end, even though it tries to be, it is not going to be everyone’s cup of coffee.

Rated PG for thematic material, Show Me The Father is a heartbreaking and heartwarming investigation into the true purpose for fathers.  It is deliberately focused and unflinchingly honest.  A departure for the Kendricks, it is not nearly as entertaining as their previous work but it is rewarding.  For those who take fatherhood seriously, the film both convicts and redeems.  Most of all, it reassures that it is never too late to be a good father.

Show Me The Father is playing in theaters. 

Grade:  B-