It has been a good year for Christian movies. Films like I’m Not Ashamed, Silence, and The Case For Christ showed promise for an evolution of how Christian films were written and presented. Which is why I’m disappointed that Because of Gracia take a step back from what was a good step forward. Because of Gracia is a film about a girl, but not really starring a girl (I’ll explain later). The film focuses on two couples whose lives are going in two different directions.
One couple deals with the roadblock of relationships and the other deals with the struggle of teen pregnancy. You have a socially awkward teenager named Chase (Massoglia), who seems to redefine the term introvert, who develops a crush on the new girl in town from California named Grace (Peters). Meanwhile, you get an in-depth look at a young teenage couple who struggles with the consequences of sex in their relationship.
The narrative here is a jumbled mess and that is because you aren’t exactly sure what the narrative is. We are introduced to Chase as our main character but we discover he really isn’t the main character because he disappears halfway through the film. Then we focus on Grace but it feels like her character doesn’t become an important figure until halfway through. The film tackles issues like abortion, evolution, and freedom of speech, but these topics feel out-of-place with the overall film because it is presented in such a way that doesn’t flow the story and feels like the writers needed to check off Christian Movies tropes before the end credits.
Less is more and the reason other Christian movies worked is that they focused on one topic and wrote a story to best represent their point. Here you feel like they needed a product to target to teens, but is just isn’t relatable to its own Christian teenage demographic. Overall Because of Grácia some moments of brilliance but fails to put together a coherent story in its Pro-life message it wants to present.