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Steen: No spectacles required
Heaven is for Real
Based on the true story of a young boy’s visit to Heaven, written by his father Todd Burpo and filmed in Manitoba, this show is a riveting account of a near-death experience and the enormous change it brought about to a family and a whole community.
Todd Burpo, a pastor in a church in Imperial, Nebraska is played by Greg Kinnear, his wife Sonja (Kelly Reilly) are at first hesitant to believe the stories that keep being told by their son, Colton (Connor Corum) and this leads to stress, anger, and a sense of isolation. As the stories become irrefutable, the courage and conviction of a family and a community serve to provide comfort and solace to those who doubted.
Directed by Randall Wallace, the actors are perfect for the parts they play and if the attendance in the theatre on Wednesday night were any indication, this will be a winner. The audience I was in, actually clapped at the end—now that’s something I haven’t experienced in quite a while.
Heaven is for Real is thought-provoking, and while the book itself has much more to say about the experience, there is a sense of wonder about the whole thing—not to mention the good news that, in Heaven, no one is old (a fact I find comforting).
This film likely won’t change any minds, or even cause folks to have an epiphany of belief, but it may start a dialogue and it may prompt some to buy the book, but more importantly, I think it makes us realize that there may just be a whole lot more than what we see and can even imagine and doesn’t that make us all feel just a little better?
I give Heaven is for Real four reels, oh and in Heaven, no one wears glasses either.