“I want to make quality films,” he says. “Even God wants no part of a bad movie.”
Mr. Joiner also struggles with those who insist that a religiously themed movie must be overtly doctrinaire. “There are people who think this film isn’t ‘Christian’ enough,” he says. For example, some religious viewers have criticized the film because it never mentions the name of Jesus. Mr. Joiner, ever the comedian, jokes, “I tell them, you know, that’s the same reason I won’t read the Old Testament.”
More important, Mr. Joiner says, is to make films that “plant seeds. You can’t appeal to the unchurched if you hit them over the head.” Better to make interesting, entertaining films that also infuse a thoughtful, inspiring message, he contends.
In a nation where more than 90 percent of citizens profess to believe in God and 83 percent say the God they believe in answers prayers, there ought to be a market for quality films with pro-religious messages. Yet where faith is concerned, if it’s ever depicted, it typically is portrayed as a journey away from God, and certainly away from organized religion.
Perhaps “The Grace Card” will prove there’s a role for God in movies after all.
He’s the good guy.