Blue Like Jazz

Raw, gritty, with some foul language - not the typical description of a Christian film. Yet that’s how some are describing the upcoming movie “Blue Like Jazz.”

The film, based on a bestselling coming-of-age Christian memoir of the same name, is scheduled to premiere Saturday at the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas.

“Blue Like Jazz” follows a pious, 19-year-old sophomore at a Texas college who decides to flee his conservative religious upbringing by transferring to one of the most liberal college campuses in America.

The movie is rated PG-13 because of mature themes, and some references to sexuality, drugs and alcohol.

The film, which opens in US theaters on April 13th, almost didn't get made due to lack of funding. It took a Kickstarter campaign, in which individuals pledge small amounts of money towards a project, to provide the movie with the funds needed. The amount raised, $345,992, holds the record for the most ever generated via Kickstarter.

The book on which the movie is based found a wide audience: evangelicals, progressives and “spiritual but not religious” folks. It spent 43 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list, tallying at least 1.5 million copies sold.

The director of the film said he intentionally avoided making a "preachy" movie, and expressed frustration with other Christian oriented films.

It looks interesting. I read the book. I wonder what Steven Greydanus would think of it.

Its a good question. I searched his website, but didn’t see any mention of it. I did see that he thought Habemus Papam was mediocre because, although the film was good-natured, it lacked nuance or depth.

I mentioned Blue Like Jazz specifically because we had been having a discussion of Why Christian Films Are So Awful

The basic complaint was that self-consciously Christian films often lack any subtlety and hammer hard the moralistic lesson of the movie to make sure that every one in the audience understands it.

While searching for what Greydanus may have said about Blue Like Jazz, I found an interesting piece of news. Apparently, the people who produced films like *Courageous *or *Fireproof *or Facing the Giants are trying to blacklist the director of Blue Like Jazz and prevent the trailer for the film being shown.

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