Sunrise in Heaven

Sunrise in Heaven

Sunrise in Heaven: Enduring Love

Based on the novel His Sunrise My Sunset, Jan recounts her love story to an Air Force soldier named Steve Hurst.

The film Sunrise in Heaven opened with an old version of Jan and Steve, talking about what they can still do together while driving on the road and then an accident happened.  They were both sent to the hospital.

Their adult daughters Terri and Michele came to the hospital to comfort Jan, but her thoughts were elsewhere. It brought her back to the day she first met Steve.

It was in 1964 when Steve got stationed at Vandenberg Air Force Base, where Jan’s dad Jim, was an officer who trains recruits. Jan was among the young girls who served food at a canteen. Steve was instantly attracted to Jan the moment he laid eyes on her. To him, it was love at first sight. But Jan was quick to turn him down. Her dad already forewarned her not to date a GI.

These scenes remind us there was an era not so long ago where teenagers obey their parents no matter how strict they are. Having to follow their parent’s rules outweighs peer pressure.

There are several scenes that youngsters of today’s generation can learn from when it comes to courtship. Jan thinks her dad’s antics towards Steve is crazy.

However, she tells Steve how important it is for her that they get her dad’s blessing.

Seeing them consult their thoughts and feelings to a pastor is a good reflection to young audiences. Both of them showed openness and respect not only for each other but to the people involved in their lives.

Jim thinks Steve is soft; that is why he tested his patience. He wanted to know if his spirit is weak and if he will turn his back on Jan because he was getting in their way.

Their confrontation scene will make us understand Jim’s intention as a father and that is to save his daughter from heartbreak before it even happens.

Back at the hospital, Terri and Michele showed a contrasting outlook about their dad’s condition. His spine was already damaged, and he is only relying on a respirator as life support. Terri believes in the power of prayer. While Michele confronts the reality that for her, Steve has a bleak chance of surviving.

Despite their differences, Michele reached out to Pastor Robert so he could pray for their family. The prayer scene reminds us of how powerful prayer can be to ease a soul from desperation.

Sunrise in Heaven gives us a story that will help us understand how to accept challenges in life and anchor it by faith.

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The Stray: A Loyal Guardian

The Stray

The Stray: A Loyal Guardian

Everybody loves the innocent love and loyalty of a pet. Based on a true story, this film tells the tale of a brave stray dog named Pluto. Pluto came into the lives of Christian and his family unexpectedly and yet, touched their lives like no other.

Mitch almost always comes home late. He spends long hours reviewing scripts while his wife Michelle takes care of their three kids.

Guilty for turning down his son’s invitation to watch his upcoming baseball game, Mitch told Michelle about getting a dog to become Christian’s playmate. The idea delighted his younger daughter Rachel, but Michelle doesn’t want to get one on purpose unless a stray dog comes up.

Meanwhile, Christian bullied by two boys at the school playground when a dog suddenly showed up to defend him. The dog followed him at home to Michelle’s surprise and eventually, became part of the Davis family. Pluto’s opportune arrival seems the answer to Mitch dilemma.

These scenes tell us how easy it is for us to find an outlet for our shortcomings than makeup for it. Mitch thought that the dog’s presence would keep his wife and kids distracted while he is away from them.

A year later, Christian scores at baseball and Mitch missed again to see his son’s milestone.  The boy was already becoming distant from him. Michelle expressed her thoughts to Mitch about their situation that all she wanted was a happy family. She told him that his workload becomes time-consuming to the point of putting a strain on their relationship as a family. This scene of two adults opening their hearts set an excellent example of how to face problems in a matured way. They teach us to make life-altering decisions like leaving a career chase in favour of keeping the family close-knit.

As for Pluto, the dog showed how he valued their family. The youngest child Kinsey wandered off when mom and dad were busy. When they finally noticed that she was missing, the worried dad drove off the road and found Pluto barking at every stranger around the crying child.

Moving to countryside Colorado, Mitch finds himself lonesome. Unable to write a script, he attempts to reconnect with Christian who still blocks him. Pluto’s companionship eased his troubled mind. He sits there beside him under a tree and jogs with him in the morning. A compelling thought was that The Stray takes care of them better than they do.

Mitch requested neighbours to let their sons join him and Christian trekking the mountain, tagging along Pluto. He tried to amuse the kids, but the snow started to fall and then, lightning strikes. Be inspired by the concluding scenes showing us how fragile life is and how devoted a man’s best friend can be. Pluto may have been the catalyst for the story’s plot. However, the core message of this film is really about protecting the family and its values.

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In God’s Time

In God's Time

In God’s Time: Keeping Faith Amidst Life’s Uncertainties

Time is precious at any given point in our lives. This film takes us to four people dealing with difficult phases in their separate lives. A watchmaker narrates that God intervenes in the workings of his creation. In a twist of fate, a wristwatch showed each character the moments that affected them most.

Sleeping on a friend’s couch and without a job, young Rorry worries about her pregnancy. It doesn’t even help that her uncle Dr. Phillips suggested considering abortion as an option. He showed insensitivity to Rorry despite hurting over losing his wife to cancer. He tried to numb his pain by becoming alcoholic and taking prescribed pills to cope up with life without her. Meanwhile, Brandon left the Army on AWOL. He was guilt-stricken for accidentally killing a man and a child when he was in Afghanistan. His brother’s suicide also tortured him so he sleeps in his truck. And there was Jerry, a belligerent vagrant who intimidates other beggars. These characters relate to how vulnerable we are when troubled with life-changing trials that come our way.

The story turned when Jerry received a wristwatch from a mysterious man. He was examining the watch on his wrist when it sparked. With the hands of time spinning, Jerry fell into a dreamlike state seeing himself as a devoted father to his young daughter. He saw Christ extending his hand to him. Snapping back to reality, he decided to clean himself up and find his daughter. These scenes remind us about losing grip of faith when we are downtrodden. Then, we redeem faith again when we are ready to take another shot at life.

Jerry saw Brandon beaten at a parking area. After a short conversation, he handed the mystical wristwatch to Brandon wishing it will help him too. It made him see scenes in Afghanistan, his brother giving him a Popsicle and laughing while they play football. Then he saw Christ’s hand as if reaching out to him. His soul yearns for redemption and this time, he may need to forgive himself. God’s mercy allows us to make peace with our past hurts so we can move forward and see a good life beyond the pain.

Brandon left the wristwatch with Dr. Phillips when he went to his clinic. The wristwatch opened a trance for Dr. Phillips to see blissful moments with his loving wife. By seeing her with Christ, he has come to accept that she has already passed on. The doctor handed the wristwatch to Rorry. She, in turn, realizes she’d rather transform her worries into believing that God loves her.

When you thought you figured out how the intertwined story of these characters end, the culminating scenes come as a surprise. Worry, grief, disappointment and being heartbroken usually comes to us unexpectedly. However, God allows time for healing so we can stretch faith in Him. We learn from each other’s experiences and these things happen In God’s Time.

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Five Feet Apart

Five Feet Apart

Five Feet Apart: Love Beyond Measure

The heart knows no boundaries and the soul knows no time, as they say. This inspirational film presents a teenage love story that’s hindered not by the people around them but their own medical condition called Cystic Fibrosis.

The story opened with a narration about human touch as our first form of communication. Touch connects us to other people and we need that touch from the one we love almost as much as we needed air to breathe. Main characters Stella, Will and Poe were teenagers who considered the hospital as their second home. All three of them have Cystic Fibrosis, a lung disease that restricts them from having normal teenage lives. Stella’s best coping mechanism is sticking to her regimen of pills and tube tune-up. Scenes showing the funny Stella in front of her friends and in her vlog and the Stella alone in the hospital room tells us a lot about how we too, seem okay in front of an audience when the truth is being sick alone is a lonely battle.

They have to rush Will to Saint Grace Hospital to receive a new drug for CF. He noticed Stella passed by his partially opened room so he followed her to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. The short introduction immediately ended upon Nurse Barb’s warning to always check their distance. The reason for this is because Will may contract Stella with B-cepacia infection that may make her ineligible for a lung transplant.

Stella then grabbed a pool cue to measure the distance between her and Will. She can roam around the hospital with Will five feet apart. In one tender moment by the pool, Stella showed Will her body with scars and so is Will. No matter the restrictions between them, they who are in-love have such moments to share and cherish. Even without touching, Will expressed his love for Stella through his drawings and Stella showed how much she cared about Will by arranging his medicine cart and coaxing him to take their regimen at the same time while on video-call.

Stella and Poe were friends since they were young. They couldn’t hug each other to express their feelings be it happy or sad. Poe ended his relationship with Michael even when he loves him despite having CF. Just when Poe planned his reconciliation with Michael and meeting his mom, his lungs gave up on him. Brokenhearted, Stella left the hospital with Will, even disregarding calls and text messages informing her about the lungs transplant.

Have your Kleenex handy for the culminating scenes. The walk towards the light showed two faces under one poignant scene. This film made us understand that regardless of being healthy or not, we could do better at getting the most from the time we have. In a world of uncertainty, there’s life and death, there’s hope and hurt, and there’s love that surpasses time.

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