The Amazing Grace Reviews
The acting is wooden, the camera set-ups are uninspired and TV-like, and the costume and set design fairly shout "Student film!" Everything is too clean, the native women wear modest tops in an ecuatorial climate, and everyone looks like they just stepped out of the make-up trailer in Burbank.
And the notion that the song "Amazing Grace" itself is a cribbing of an African melody is a flat falsehood. The instantly recognizable melody is from the 1835 song, "New Britain," though the lyrics predated it by over 50 years. The way the filmmakers attempt to connect the melody to African folk music is cynical and manipulative.
A great story always moves the audience. Newton's real story is far more compelling than the one told in this film. It has all the required elements of a great motion picture, but the filmmakers -- obviously spiritual amateurs themselves -- did not understand or trust the Spirit when they made this film.
If they were sincere, five stars for trying. If not, zero.
But the film itself? Two stars for a botched effort with no excuse available in the source material.