“Hereafter” – a brief review of the new Clint Eastwood movie.

“Hereafter” has been touted by some as Clint Eastwood’s masterpiece. As an Eastwood fan, I wanted to see it as much for his movie making as the subject matter. I was disappointed on both fronts.

Interminably slow and aimless, this dark, dismal drawn out exercise in existential nothingness was truly painful to watch. There are some great performances – Bryce Dallas Howard’s and young Frankie McLaren’s for instance are superb. It is a shame they are in this wreck of a movie. Damon does what he can trying to make a slow moving train with only one car look interesting. Jay Mohr is, well…Jay Mohr. Nothing more, nothing less. Cécile de France too does what she can but Peter Morgan’s do nothing script is just too much motionless intertia to overcome.

If you wanted a glimpse of the author’s idea of the “Hereafter” – you only get it by way of the vehicle itself – at least in terms of some kind of Hell. We learn from having to sit through this movie that at the least, Hell is endlessly long, pointless, hopeless, joyless and utterly meaningless. Beyond that, it is the same old “they’ve crossed over and everything’s OK” (we guess).

Do not. DO NOT waste your time or your money unless you want to experience PURGATORY THE THEME RIDE for yourself. Better yet, just take a stick in the eye and be done with it. At least then you can go to emergency and get treatment. There is no way to treat the damage this somnambulant dullard of flick does to you.

I HOPE I can sleep it off.

After all that is said and done, my wife and I did come away with this: As those who believe the Bible, and who hold to the living hope of the resurrection as a life-informing reality – we did not realize how bleak any kind of look into the future must be for those still outside of Christ. It is all nothing but the dimmest conjecture. I do think Christians can take advantage of the subject matter being raised – to truly give an answer of the hope that is in us because of Christ. I have lost touch with how hopeless my unsaved friends are – how they cling to just the barest thread of anything to try and make sense of death. We not only know what happens after we die – but why we die in the first place. And that makes the most amazing platform for the Gospel. We know – what everyone else, can only make the blindest of guesses at. As the old hymn writer said: “We’ve a story to tell to the nations…” And not a fictional one – the story of all truth – of the person and work of our Savior Jesus, the risen Christ.

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