The Way Home
Red Five Entertainment
Randy Simkins is a husband and father torn between the demands of his job and commitment to his family. Asked by his wife Christal to watch their two-year-old son Joe for a few minutes. Randy is distracted by work and Joe disappears. Racked by guilt, Randy joins Christal in a desperate search for their missing son alongside hundreds of others from their church and community. Randy and Christal's strained marriage must now weather the ultimate test -- the potential loss of a child. The Way Home is the story of Randy's powerful spiritual journey back to love, faith and Godly understanding of what must always take priority in a man's life -- his family.
This is a story, not based on a true story, but it actually IS the true story of a child that disappeared, and the community rally that occurred to find him. Through the camera lens, we are introduced to the Simpkins family at a time when Randy is swamped with work, and Christal is resenting the time he spends away from the family. Although Randy is a loving father when he is home, he has to be home for it to matter. The family is preparing to go away on vacation, and Randy is given the task of putting little Joe into his car seat. Randy decides to let Joe ride around on his tricycle for a little bit before strapping him in, and this allows Randy some time to check his email. The next thing he knows, Joe is no longer on his tricycle. Joe is nowhere to be seen. The search is on, and the phone calls are made. People come from far and wide to help in the search for little Joe.
I hate to say it, but this movie seemed a bit formulaic, even though the story is original. The acting was good, but not quite solid, despite the star power of Dean Cain (Lois and Clark: The New Adventures Of Superman). There were times that the plot dragged along, but I think that was mainly because there just isn't enough material to cover 95 minutes when 80% of the film is the search for Joe. They could have chopped a good 20-35% of the search out of the film and added some solid character development, and that would have catapulted this picture into the realm of greatness. Some of the acting by the peripheral characters was less than quality, but it wasn't enough to keep me from liking this film.
The cinematography was superb, framing shots at interesting angles and using unusual effects to grab the viewer's attention. Due to the nature of the film, there wasn't much of a sub-plot, but what was there was well thought out and it creatively supported the main feature.
Overall, I think this is a quality family film that is a wonderful addition to anyone's collection, and it can even be used as a teaching tool for your children. I think the positives far outweigh the negatives, and unfortunately, the negatives are somewhat expected in the Christian genre of film. I absolutely recommend this film.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this DVD free as a part of the BookSneeze.com review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."