It truly doesn’t stretch the imagination too far to accept a very successful Christian evangelist preacher who came from a rather dark background and through “the light” grows into a highly popular religious leader. It also doesn’t require a wild imagination to consider that the politically powerful can and if in their mind necessary to be ruthless and brutal toward all who get in their way. So when the religious leader defies the desires of a very powerful Senator, the preacher’s life is rapidly turned into a living hell with the intended result being the preacher’s ultimate demise. This is the core of the movie “Persecuted” starring James Remar as the preacher, John Luther, Dean Stockwell as Dave Wilson, Raoul Trujillo as Mr. Gray, Bruce Davison as Senator Donald Harrison and Fred Thompson as Dr. Charles Luther.
Writer/Director Daniel Lusko has created a powerful and intriguing action mystery film. The story line is well defined and definitely plausible. The acting is superb throughout as is the cinematography and editing. The only issue I had and it is a small one is that the conclusion is somewhat ambiguous. But even that doesn’t detract from the overall quality of the project. We deal often with deeply flawed religious leaders and severely corrupt politicians; those elements are not news. But the story unfolds meticulously and always in a captivating even riveting manor.
“Persecuted” will likely not receive an Academy Award or even a nomination, but it will thoroughly entertain you for one and half hours. One of this film’s most endearing aspects is the display of what it means to really be a survivor against all odds. Regardless of anyone’s religious or political beliefs the enormous courage and internal power demonstrated by the main character John Luther is priceless. That alone is my mind worth the price of admission but only if you are perceptive enough shall I say – get it. It is a great summer movie that can easily be enjoyed at anytime.
Copyright 2014 Ron Irwin