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.