Monday, April 28, 2014

Movie Review - Heaven is For Real

We went to see Heaven is for Real yesterday. We rarely ever go to a theater, but I really wanted to see this one and not wait. I wasn't sure how I would handle it due to my own near-death experience - , but the movie really left me kind of deflated, thinking, "This little boy experienced the greatest thing ever and that's all they have to say about it!"

Personally, I thought the book was better. The movie was pretty good, in as far as it went, but left me feeling really sad that anyone who goes to it seeking real answers will leave with an "I'm OK, you are OK" type message without any true hope. Praying that God might use this topic as a springboard to open doors so we can share true Hope, but the movie itself doesn't give real answers AT ALL. :( As a friend said, "Hollywood had it grip on it in a few sections and one could leave there thinking the gates to Heaven are not narrow - that everyone gets through..which is very sad." As the little boy said of Heaven, my favorite line of the movie and oh so true, "It is just MORE!"

As one reviewer wrote on their Facebook page, "It was a great movie!! Loved every bit of it! Although they left out the most important to get to Heaven! Ephesians 2:8-9 "For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast." With that being said it is by faith we get to heaven not by good works...think they could have went into more detail of how to get to Heaven because that is the most important! Accepting Jesus Christ into your life is the only way to get to Heaven!"

The reason I am putting my review on this page is because the theme of miscarriage is woven throughout the whole movie. As you may know, I no longer really miss my miscarried babies very often at all now (something I never thought I would dream of saying!) but actually am rather jealous of them now. ( offers  more of my personal thoughts on Heaven including input from a few of our HP sisters, and the topic of miscarriage is addressed.) Still, while I am really peaceful now about Noel, Joel and Hannah, it was hard to relive the raw emotions of actual loss experiences through this movie.


--- Specific plotline spoilers below ----

One of the early scenes of the movie involves the mom pulling a pink and blue box out of her bottom drawer of her dresser, opening it and sadly, lovingly looking at a little pink dress and little blue knit outfit. There are no words to tell you what's happening, but it is fairly clear she is grieving.

Later, there is a new baby girl born into their church and she gives that little girl her daughter's dress. The other mother does not know the backstory, but the evident of the emotional cost to Mrs. Burpe is evident.

There are at least two more scenes that specifically refer back to the dress later in the movie.

During one scene from Heaven, a little girl who looks remarkable like his living sister, only a little younger, walks up and embraces our main character.

A few scenes later, the little boy (it is driving me crazy that I can't remember his name right now!) is folding socks with his mom and tells her, in great detail, all about his second sister who died in her tummy (they had never known sex nor told the children about her miscarriage which had happened even before his conception).

He made a statement that she didn't have a name because they had never given her one, a fact that his parents confirmed as they had not known the sex of the child she lost. This disturbed me a bit as I believe that God will give us each a new name in Heaven anyway, so not naming a child here on earth wouldn't leave our children nameless. Then I thought about the fact that God was communicating to this 4-year-old in terms he could comprehend and his parents would grasp, so from the earthly perspective, yes it is true that she had no name.

It was at this point in the movie where the mother, who had been skeptical and thought it all a thinking her son's imagination is just over-active, is rendered to tears and really starts taking her son's account seriously.

In true Hollywood form, the closing seen of the movie is a sickly sweet pregnancy announcement where the wife takes the miscarriage memorial blue outfit and gives it to her husband, telling him they will be needing it in a few months. *gag* And yes, they did have another living son who is now a pre-teen. Very happy for them with the joy of their rainbow baby in real life, just could have done without the Hollywood spin!

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