I'm not normally a big fan of movies. I will willingly go to the movie theater with the rest of my family if there's something we're all interested in, but I rarely watch a video just for myself. When I saw the description and trailer for Trust Fund by Mapelle Films, I was intrigued enough to ask to review it.
Trust Fund is a modern day take on the story of the prodigal son told in the gospel of Luke (chapter 15). Instead of two brothers, this film follows the story of two sisters. Like the original parable, the younger sister takes a large sum of money (her inheritance) and runs off to another country. When she finds herself in over her head and out of money, she returns home to her father. Also like the original parable, the older sister struggles when her prodigal sister returns home.
I'm so familiar with the original prodigal story that I was caught off guard when the movie kept going after the anticipated "welcome home" party. The Biblical accounts ends shortly after the father orders that the fatted call be killed. At the corresponding point in Trust Fund, I was only two-thirds of the way through the movie. In hindsight, I should've realized that a good movie would wrap up the loose ends from the first part of the film and delve into way relationships were reconciled (or not), but I was left missing the faster pace and familiar story line of the movie's beginning. My mistake was perhaps in assuming that Trust Fund has the same climax as the original parable. Eventually, the high-paced tempo of the first half of the movie returned and I was hooked again. In the end, I was not disappointed in the movie, even if I thought it drug a bit in the middle.
To further the Trust Fund movie experience, Mapelle Films created a free study guide to use in a small group discussion setting. I like the way that it builds on the film as a whole and also includes short clips to remind the group of specific scenes or situations. The study guide delves into such deep topics as howwe can become dissatisfied with God's plans for our lives, why we sometimes choose condemnation over compassion, the difficulty of offering forgiveness and restoration, and so much more. Avid readers might also be interested the companion book Love Was Near -- a book featured in the book and one that delves more deeply into the main character's feelings and thoughts when she left home and set off on her own.
Sandra L. Martin, writer and director of Trust Fund, already has another movie in the works. How to Pick Your Second Husband First, a romantic comedy, is supposed to be released in 2018. I'll be watching the Mapelle Films website to make sure I don't miss any updates.