Everyday Miracles

Movie review by
Brian Costello, Common Sense Media
Everyday Miracles Movie Poster Image
Some drinking and smoking in bland faith-based drama.
  • NR
  • 2015
  • 93 minutes

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Faith-based movie addresses true goodness and spirituality as opposed to preachers motivated by greed. Addresses questions of how God can allow bad things to happen in the world. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Cotton refuses to use his gift for healing as a way to make money for his mother's traveling revival tent church services. 

Violence

Little girl trapped against a fence in front of a wild horse. A dog gets hit by a truck. A mother poisons her daughter. Talk of how one of the lead characters lost his wife and child to a drunk driver. 

Sex

Kissing. Tame innuendo from an older woman. 

Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A man stumbles and lurches down a dirt road; the man who gives him a place to stay tells him to cut out the drinking. Man and woman shown drinking whiskey inside an RV. One of the main characters smokes cigarettes. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Everyday Miracles (aka Cotton) is a 2015 faith-based drama about a reluctant faith healer trying to start a new life away from his difficult past. A man stumbles and lurches down a dirt road; the man who gives him a place to stay tells him to cut out the drinking. Whiskey drinking is shown. One of the lead characters smokes cigarettes. Violence includes a mother attempting to poison her daughter, and a dog getting hit by a truck. There's talk of a drunk-driving accident that killed the wife and child of one of the main characters. Overall, the movie explores themes of faith and spirituality during difficult times, and how there are some who seek to profit financially from the religious faith of others. 

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What's the story?

In EVERYDAY MIRACLES (aka Cotton), Cotton drunkenly stumbles one night into a small town, and, in need of a place to pass out, tries to break into a stable. He wakes up in a bed, bandaged and disoriented, and meets Clay (Gary Cole), the owner of the land. In need of work and a place to stay, Cotton asks Clay if he can work on the farm as a ranch hand, and Clay agrees, on the condition that Cotton stops drinking. Soon, Cotton, in a seeming miracle, rescues Clay's daughter from an out-of-control horse. Cotton meets Maxine, who also works on the farm, and the two soon begin dating, and Cotton begins to feel as if he can put his difficult past behind him. However, Cotton is soon tracked down by his mother, a traveling revival preacher who wants to continue using Cotton and his healing gifts for her own financial ends. As Cotton confronts his past and his mother, he must also confront the suffering of his sister, and as he learns about the losses Clay has suffered, Cotton tries to understand the nature of miracles great and small in a world where it seems sometimes that God has turned his back on those who suffer the most. 

Is it any good?

For what it's worth, this is better than most faith-based movies. Like every other faith-based movie, Everyday Miracles (aka Cotton) creates a world to conveniently match the message, and the message is communicated in a clunky and heavy-handed manner. Most of the acting, aside from a hammy performance or two, is above the average community theater acting typically seen in movies like these. There are pronounced internal and external conflicts that work with rather than against the story and its message. This is not so much a comment on the quality of this movie as it is on how low the bar is set for the enjoyment of faith-based movies for viewers who aren't looking to have the core beliefs of their faith validated through entertainment. 

Faith-based viewers are likely to enjoy the movie and its message of faith and spirituality during difficult times in spite of the scenes with whiskey drinking, cigarette smoking, and kissing. For everyone else, the movie's slow pace isn't likely to win over any converts. What's refreshing about the movie, though, is that it does make an effort to confront those who use religion as a means to satisfy their own greedy financial desires. For a movie genre not known for turning the judgment inward upon the faithful as a whole, the self-awareness is a welcome change from the usual fare. Nonetheless, these more positive qualities don't make the movie especially memorable. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about faith-based movies. How does Everyday Miracles use the story to communicate religious themes and messages?

  • Why do you think movies like these are viewed by some as an alternative to mainstream Hollywood movies? 

  • How does the movie try to convey life in a small town? Do you think it's accurate? 

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love faith-based tales

Themes & Topics

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