Billy: The Early Years - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Billy: The Early Years Reviews

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October 13, 2008
Given the somewhat lame title, I expected to be bored by this movie. However, I found the film to be both surprisingly funny and deeply moving. The performances are great, the soundtrack keeps things moving along, and the conclusion is profound. It would be nice if the "critics" would give this movie a chance, and not get hung up on their predisposition to the message. "Billy the Early Years" is a well-made film and it will definitely join my DVD collection when it's available.
½ October 13, 2008
I had very low expectations based on the trailers and pre-release scenes so I was completely surprised at how well the film was made. It stayed true to the characters portrayed for the most part, but didn't let the facts ruin a good story or scene. It was well-acted, beautifully shot and edited with great symbolism and foreshadowing. It honored the lives of those involved, had a decent score and soundtrack AND most importantly it clearly presented the Gospel. I have no complaints - I can't say I'd do anything differently. Of course they played up Templeton to build conflict (what's a good story without conflict?) but believe it or not his story is pretty factual as well. You just can't make this stuff up sometimes. The filmmakers still left his fate pretty open ended which I appreciate. Some events or dialogue happened earlier or later or not at all - but hey that's film. I give it an A-.
½ October 12, 2008
The Bible must ban quality filmmaking somewhere, because Christian evangelicals seem completely incapable of directing, screenwriting or acting. Where're the dramatic arcs? Could we get some sort of character development or even complexity?

Landau does a poor Salieri impression as Armie Hammer's Billy Graham grins like that guy from the Enzyte commercials. It turns out that Benson has spent his career directing occasional TV episodes, which isn't at all surprising after seeing the staged, humorless job he did here. Billy Graham flopped the first time he preached, so maybe this is just a test of his faith before he goes on to become a famous filmmaker. I doubt it.
October 12, 2008
Powerful and Inspiring - I saw Billy: The Early years last night and really enjoyed it. The acting and cinematography was excellent and I found the story to be very moving. It?s rare to find such great Hollywood movie that doesn?t have all the usual garbage that goes with it. A must see for everyone.
October 5, 2008
Billy: The Early Years is uneven but worth the trip. His Romance with Ruth and His Theological debate with Charles Templeton are the highlights of the film. Graham's initial conversion at a tent revival didn't carry enough cinematic firepower to satisfy me and there were a few instances during his initial days in Seminary and preaching that almost made me question the films intentions (parody or biography?) But, once Ruth turns up in the Wheaton, Illinois section of the film and when the tensions mount between Graham and Templeton, this film makes it's lasting impressions. If it were a hitter in the batter's box I'd score it a solid Double!!
½ July 26, 2015
This was not what I expected. It showed what the title promised- the early years of ministry for Billy Graham. However, I don't feel like the audience really got a clear idea of this man's life as an early evangelist and how he began to touch people. Still, it was worth seeing.
½ October 11, 2013
Considering the national importance of this mans ministry this film lacks the true depth and star studded cast to carry the story. The music is wimpy and lacks any true conveyance of the act upon the screen. The photography and the lighting are bland and fail to add any life to the actors, who are trying their best in an awful layout. This needs to be redone by a superior studio. Nibbles: Pancakes and Maple Syrup.
½ July 11, 2010
Could've been way better, but it suceeds in being an entertaining biopic about Billy Graham.
November 6, 2010
The lead guy eventually makes a fair Billy Graham impersonation, but mainly Armie lampoons the spiritual giant. It doesn't help the script is quite lame. Ironically, the best and most reverential part was the examination of agnosticism by the supporting character.
½ October 5, 2010
Great story, great movie. I HIGHLY recommend watching it :-)
May 23, 2010
I was expecting something laughably bad, but it actually was watchable. Certainly not a good movie - the script was pretty bad, the camera work was amateurish, and I admittedly only watched the first forty minutes, but i can see how it would appeal to a certain audience. And it's not without its charms - the guy playing Billy Graham is immensely likable, and like I said, it's watchable. It's just not very good and doesn't have much to offer if you're not a fan of the man himself. I've heard complaints about inaccuracies as well, but I don't know much about Rev. Graham's life, so I can't really comment.
October 10, 2008
telling the story from templeton's point of view was not enjoyable, the college parts were funny, the production was quite well done, the ending leaves a lot to be desired, which is weird because the "end" of the story is a really happy one.
½ March 20, 2010
Not particularly thrilled by this kind of Stateside legendary, nevertheless, the film has toned it down & made it light quite a bit already.
August 8, 2009
Great movie. The actor portraying Billy Graham did an excellent job. The only prob I seen is with the advertisements and trailers. They made it appear that Jos Tuner had a large role for his acting debut when in fact he only appeared as George O'Shea in a 30 second cameo. The way it was advertised one would have thought that Josh played Billy. But this is a great inspirational movie. I am so glad that it finally came to DVD.
½ November 19, 2008
This movie had great potential but was sooo dissapointed. I 'am fascinated by the life of Billy Graham but this movie was so greatly "embellished' those who had researched his life knew how unaccurate some events were. I had been waiting for so long for a movie to come out about him and was not impressed with the movie.
October 10, 2008
A very interesting movie, but not endorsed by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. From Franklin Graham- "While the movie covers many aspects of my fatherÔ??s early years, it depicts events that never happened or are greatly embellished. My fatherÔ??s life has been documented in many ways and I have always appreciated those who painstakingly sought to tell his story accurately."
October 24, 2008
Cant wait to see it.
October 20, 2008
this is one of the most inspiring movies i have ever seen. this movie will definitely broaden your faith.
½ October 14, 2008
the best thing about this movie is that it was about one of the greatest influential men of all time and gives us a look into the beginning of his evangelistic career. so i found it interesting for that reason. don't go see it if you are just looking to be entertained or for the acting.
October 14, 2008
Martin Landau contributed an acceptable performance, but the rest of the cast was ... well ... bleah! I was somewhat disappointed at the lack of depth in the film. Ho-hum.
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