Unstoppable (2013)

Movie review by
Renee Schonfeld, Common Sense Media
Unstoppable (2013) Movie Poster Image
Faith-based docu is mainly a sermon on suffering, pain.
  • NR
  • 2013
  • 65 minutes

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Faith-based, message-driven film attempts to answer the question, "Why do bad things happen to good people?" The Bible is used as literal source material for Kirk Cameron's belief in an all-powerful God who uses pain and suffering to create unshakeable faith and confidence in His goodness and purpose.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Kirk Cameron as the narrator is sincere and earnest in his faith and passionately promotes Christian values as they're defined in the Bible and as he interprets them. The role of women is dubious as represented by Eve (shown as she emerges by God's hand from Adam's rib) and one woman in a male-oriented business meeting; the woman has no lines and takes notes throughout. No ethnic diversity.

Violence

Several scenes depict Cain's slaying of his brother Abel. Though an effort is made to bring film artistry to the event, it's clear that Cain uses both a club and a rock to brutally kill his brother. Blood flows in several shots as the narrator attempts to explain God's purpose by allowing this act of violence.

Sex

A lengthy sequence shows Adam and Eve at the moment of their creation, and their discovery of a mutual sexual purpose in the Garden of Eden is suggested with bare shoulders, caresses, and lingering appraisal of one another.

Language
Consumerism

A lengthy promo for Liberty University, a Christian college, precedes the movie.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Unstoppable is more of a sermon than a documentary. For a little more than an hour, Kirk Cameron (a popular young teen of Growing Pains fame in the '80s) tries to answer the eternal religious mystery: Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people? He speaks directly to the audience throughout, illustrating some of his heartfelt Christian beliefs with a number of visual scenes and sequences taken from the Bible, as well as current-day events (an "imagined" business meeting and an actual funeral). The depiction of Bible stories, as they are seen here (some sensual, some brutal), may be disturbing or frightening to kids; the Cain and Abel portion, specifically, is accompanied by some violent and bloody images. Primarily of appeal to teens and adults who already have a strong religious mindset.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bypmaherk March 28, 2015

BIAS- Fictional account based Documentary

Don't waste your tome and money. Based on feelings not Facts. Totally bias view point
Adult Written byoutlawthoughts™ September 26, 2014

Unstoppable is Unbelievable...Horrible...A Must See!

Most of the people viewing "Unstoppable" will undoubtedly be Christian. Well...I If I was a Christian, I would have seriously doubt in my belief, afte... Continue reading

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

Using a teenager's death from cancer as UNSTOPPABLE's point of departure, Kirk Cameron earnestly tries to explain God's purpose in allowing "bad things to happen to good people." By tracing the biblical history of man as Adam takes his first breath rising from the mud of the earth and moving forward to the climactic resurrection of Jesus, Cameron hopes to impart his personal understanding of God's message, God's protection, and the need for the viewers to retain unshakeable faith in the face of adversity. Cameron addresses the audience directly for most of the film. It's an earnest, passionate plea. He further illustrates his viewpoints with some strong images set in Adam and Eve's Garden of Eden and at the scene of Abel's death at the hand of his brother, Cain. In a very long section of the film, Cameron intercuts his directive with sad, silent scenes from the teenager's funeral.

Is it any good?

As a film, Unstoppable has little to recommend it. This film is entirely based upon Kirk Cameron's fervent viewpoint; Cameron accepts the Bible as a literal document and expounds upon its teachings to include his own evangelical interpretations of both God's message and His motives. Most likely, its relevance to audiences will depend upon already-existing attitudes and beliefs. Cameron's passion and charisma can't offset the less-than-artful Garden of Eden sequences, the brutal and poorly executed killing of Cain, the clumsy editing throughout, and one particularly inept scene set in an "imagined" business meeting. It's all well intended but amateurish and assembled without subtlety or grace.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can discuss the differences between "documentary" films that present actual events without a bias and those which are designed to convince or "sell" a specific attitude or belief. What resources are available to audiences that would help them determine the filmmaker's purpose?

  • How does the presence of a well-known person or popular celebrity affect your willingness to accept the messages in a documentary film?

  • How did you feel as you were watching Matthew Sandgren's funeral? Why did Kirk Cameron want you to be a part of someone's very private moments?

Movie details

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