WHY WE CARE


Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."

YOUR STORIES


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"

SUPPORT THE WORK OF PLUGGED IN

Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

PLUGGED IN RATING

    No Rating Available

Watch This Review

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Movie Review

Unbroken: Path to Redemption continues the true story of former prisoner of war and Olympic athlete Louis Zamperini. The first dramatic chapter of his narrative unfolded in 2014's Unbroken, and this sequel follows Zamperini as he leaves the military to begin a rocky transition to civilian life in the mid-1940s.

Plagued with post-traumatic stress disorder after his emancipation from a Japanese POW camp, Zamperini is consumed by the terrors of his past. Unable to break free, he turns away from his loving wife and young daughter and seeks refuge in the bottle.

But one night, Zamperini has a supernatural experience, one that forces him to lay down his pride at the foot of the cross and to confront the terrible demons of his past.

Positive Elements

After Louis returns from the war, he wants to live life to the fullest. He's an eager, positive young man with big dreams. In those early post-war days before he meets Cynthia, he invests in his relationships and enjoys being around others.

Once Cynthia comes into his life, they marry and pursue their dreams and passions together, despite being poor and unable to find work. As time goes on, Louis falls into depression and a drinking problem, but his friends and family strive to help him. Louis’ older brother, Pete, is someone Louis looks up to and seeks out for counsel. Even when Louis wants to shut the world out, Pete still challenges his brother to be a better man.

Cynthia, for her part, is dedicated to Louis and vows to stay by his side (apart from a moment when she briefly threatens to divorce him at a low point in their relationship). She is patient, loving and persistently interested in his physical, emotional and spiritual well-being—and she is his biggest fan. Cynthia gains courage and hope to stay faithfully present in her marriage from her friends and from her own faith.

Louis recognizes that his wife is willing to stay by his side, even in the most difficult of times. When their daughter is born, he names her Cynthia, “to honor the best part of me.” And he's initially very involved with the baby, getting up with her in the night and allowing his wife to sleep.

Spiritual Content

After Louis’ traumatic experience as a prisoner of war in Japan, he grapples with God’s goodness and sovereignty. He blames God for the unspeakable abuses committed against him by a Japanese guard known only as The Bird. Louis constantly hears the voice of The Bird in his head, always telling him that he is “nothing,” that he is “worthless” and will never be free from his personal demons. He also harbors deep anger toward God for his past suffering and an inability to compete again in the Olympics.

Louis’ most prominent spiritual experience comes at a Billy Graham crusade. Before that moment, Louis heard about the evangelist's crusades from his wife, as well as from publicity on TV and on the radio. Eventually, he attends one of the mass rallies, where he has a powerful encounter with God after remembering the vow he made to God out at sea: “If you save me, I will serve you forever.” And so he begins to read his Bible.

Years later, Louis returns to Tokyo to personally forgive all of the men responsible for his imprisonment. He even seeks out his main tormentor, The Bird. Though the former guard and torturer is nowhere to be found, Louis leaves a Bible for him to read. Real-life clips also show Louis giving his testimony at a Billy Graham crusade and later starting an organization called Victory Boys Camp.

A Catholic priest tells Louis that he has been praying for him. Similarly, Cynthia tells Louis that he is an answer to prayer and that she prays all the time. She encourages him to attend church with her and to give the Billy Graham revival services a try. He's hesitant at first, due to some negative experiences he's had with hypocritical Christians. But after Louis' epiphany, he begins to grow spiritually.

Cynthia and Louis get married in her childhood church. Cynthia often wears a cross necklace. Another cross reads “Jesus Saves.” Both Cynthia and Louis become more grounded in their faith. A church choir sings hymns.

Sexual Content

Louis and a friend scout the beach for attractive women. Louis says that he’d like to be “a polka dot” on a woman’s swimsuit. Women wear two-piece bathing suits and men go shirtless. Louis and his wife, Cynthia, dance, lie in bed together (fully clothed) and kiss often.

Violent Content

Louis suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (though it wasn’t diagnosed or named yet at that point in the 1950s). Accordingly, his nightmares and hallucinations are easily triggered by various sounds, smells and surroundings. He's offered rice at one point, and it triggers a violent memory—resulting in Louis’ aggressive behavior toward a waiter.

Louis' horrific flashbacks show him being held captive in the prison camp, where he's brutally beaten with bamboo poles, waterboarded, and made to feel less than human by his notoriously evil captor, The Bird. Louis also dreams of nearly dying at sea, where he fended off sharks and had other harrowing survival experiences. Other PTSD flashbacks include recalling explosions and being shot at.

Louis and others also remember those who gave their life in war (as well as those who were severely injured). One of Louis’ main goals for a time is to kill The Bird.

Radio news reports mention many deaths due to war; Louis is mistakenly reported as being dead. In his anger (and progressively drunken state), Louis argues with his wife, aggressively grabbing her and throwing her toward the bed. He also boxes, smashes a record, throws things and dreams he is choking his wife.

Louis breaks his ankle while running. Cynthia finds a box that holds a gun and a picture of an emaciated Louis.

Crude or Profane Language

Cynthia tells Louis to “go to h---" at one point. We hear someone say, “What the heck?”

Drug and Alcohol Content

Men and women drink wine, beer and hard liquor. Louis struggles with alcoholism. He often drinks to excess, followed by vomiting. Many scenes show Louis visiting bars, stumbling home and hiding bottles of alcohol from his wife, all of which illustrate how deep his alcohol problem really is.

A psychiatrist offers hypnosis and narcotics to help Louis sleep. Louis says his arm was “pumped full of garbage” in Japan.

Other Negative Elements

Louis is asked to travel across the country to raise money for the military, but he only agrees to do so in order to escape his PTSD. Ironically, though, his participation in that tour is where he begins to drink.

When Louis and Cynthia get married, a proud Louis is unwilling to take a menial job, which leads to unhealthy habits (such as frivilously spending money) and an obsession with seeking revenge on his captors, especially The Bird. Louis is often selfish, angry, sullen and depressed; Cynthia feels forced to hide her pregnancy for two months for these reasons.

When Cynthia asks Louis to seek help for his problems, Louis lies and says that he is. But he's unable to let go of his pride and actually follow through, seeing that request as weakness. Cynthia describes to Louis a hypothetical future scenario in which his daughter is ashamed of the man he’s become.

Louis mentions that chocolate does something to his insides that “ain’t pretty.” He also jokes that while he runs a race, others competitors will have to “look at my backside.”

Conclusion

None of us like to admit that we are weak. It goes against our nature. We want to have it all figured out. We want to present ourselves as pretty and packaged and ready to ship.

God’s Word promises that our weaknesses reveal His strengths as He works in and through us, that we'll be made strong through His power. (See 2 Corinthians 12:1-10.) It's an idea that's completely countercultural. That's because it asks that we admit our failings so that we can receive strength that can only come from the One who is strength.

Louis Zamperini, a real-life war veteran, knew what it meant to be weak. To be powerless. To be vulnerable. He experienced weakness at the core of his being. He suffered things that most of us will never fully understand. He struggled with PTSD, alcoholism, anger, bitterness and a desire for vengeance. Louis' marriage and his family life suffered as well at times.

But God wasn’t far from Louis Zamperini. And just when he thought he’d lost it all, he found hope in the only real Hope.

Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles

Profanity/Violence

Kissing/Sex/Homosexuality

Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

Credits

Rating

Readability Age Range

Author

Cast

Samuel Hunt as Louis Zamperini; Merritt Patterson as Cynthia Applewhite; Will Graham as Billy Graham; Gary Cole as Dr. Bailey; Bob Gunton as Major; Bobby Campo as Pete Zamperini; Vanessa Bell Calloway as Lila Burkholder; Andrew Caldwell as Harry Read; David Sakurai as Mutsuhiro "The Bird" Watanabe

Director

Harold Cronk ( )

Distributor

Pure Flix

Network

Performance

Record Label

Platform

Publisher

In Theaters

September 14, 2018

On Video

December 11, 2018

Year Published

Awards

Reviewer

Kristin Smith

Content Caution

Kids
Teens
Adults
We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!