A Long Way Off

Director
John Errington, Michael Davis
Runtime
1 h 45 min
Release Date
6 June 2014
Genres
Romance, Drama, Family
Overview
Jacob is tired of living on the family farm, submitting to the rules of his father. One day he demands an early inheritance from his father, who shocks his young son by agreeing to give it to him. So, he heads to the big city doing things his way without restraint, and for a while he does well-surprisingly well. He takes huge business risks and converts his small fortune into a big fortune, despite his extremely flamboyant lifestyle that attracts the wrong women, including seductive Laura, whose rich boyfriend Frank is often dangerously nearby. Jake had it all: money, ladies, prestige-but then-he loses it all and just when he things he's hit bottom the bottom drops some more- until he is eating out of dumpsters and eventually ends up living in a literal pig pen. Coming to his senses he heads home, determined to work in an entry level position for his dad, who surprises him once again by running to him-but is it to kiss him or kill him?
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Plugged In2
Focus on the Family



(Reviewers' Site/Bio)

  • A Long Way Off
    Drama We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.Movie ReviewAN AUDIO SNAPSHOT REVIEW A Long Way Off is a modern retelling of the prodigal son parable. In it, Jake and his brother Seth live and work on their family's farm, a large operation that's been in business for 70 years. The next thing you know, Jake is talking to his father about his inheritance. Not like a when Dad dies inheritance, but an I-need-it-now inheritance. Surprisingly, Dad agrees and has his lawyer draw up the papers. Now with lots of cash in hand, Jake trades his pickup for a Maserati and acquires an upscale address. He spends lavishly. But Jake doesn't just splurge, he also buys large amounts of stock in a hot video game company. Then one day, Jake discovers that his stocks have tanked. Overnight his credit cards no longer work and most of his so-called friends are nowhere to be found. What else is there to do but check out the local homeless shelter? A Long Way Off takes Jesus' familiar story and brings home the parable's messages by giving it a 21st-century framework. Forgiveness. Repentance. The emptiness of worldly living. The love of a father through thick and thin. Now, I need to point out that Jake's lifestyle choices have him drinking hard and making implied immoral choices. So this probably isn't a pic for the youngest viewers in the family.Positive ElementsSpiritual ContentSexual ContentViolent ContentCrude or Profane LanguageDrug and Alcohol ContentOther Negative ElementsConclusionPro-social ContentObjectionable ContentSummary AdvisoryPlot SummaryChristian BeliefsOther Belief SystemsAuthority RolesProfanity/ViolenceKissing/Sex/HomosexualityDiscussion TopicsAdditional Comments/NotesEpisode Reviews]]>
    ...
    (Review Source)
  • A Few of My Favorite Things, Part 2
    (”A Long Way Off” is briefly mentioned in this.)
    A few years years ago, I went out on a limb and wrote a blog that included a list of many of my favorite movies. To make the grade, the films had to be both entertaining and family-friendly. I titled this blog, “A Few of My Favorite Things” and began with an introduction in which I admitted publishing such a compilation was risky. I was fully aware that not every film on my list would resonate with some of you, our readers. Most of you who commented were kind, but as expected a few of you thought I was a few fries short of a happy meal. For instance, a person named Jake commented: Soul Surfer??? For those who want to lust after half naked women!! To Save a Life??? I got the impression that sex before marriage is okay, as long as you don’t abort the baby!! Like I said, I knew I wasn’t going to please everyone. By the way, not only did I screen Soul Surfer, I was even in Hawaii for some of the filming (yes, a rough assignment, but someone had to do it!). While there were definitely some women wearing swimsuits, that’s a hard thing to get away from in a surfing movie. And with To Save a Life, my colleague Paul Asay wrote: The final product is polished, professional and one of the best Christian films I’ve seen. I guarantee you those words would not have been written for a film endorsing sex outside of marriage. Call me a glutton for punishment, but I’m ready to roll out “A Few of My Favorite Things, Part 2”—a list of 50 films I’ve liked since the original list of 30 was published in March 2012. Most, but not all of the films listed below have been reviewed by Plugged In. I’d encourage you to use this list in conjunction with our reviews. Nearly every film has a content concern or two. Even The Peanuts Movies with its perfect score has Lucy calling Charlie Brown a “blockhead.” I’ve been doing this long enough to realize we have readers who’d prefer their young children not hear any sort of name calling. I get it. Again that’s why I recommend you use this list in conjunction with our reviews. Incidentally, in light of the potential criticism you may be wondering why I’d do lists like these at all. Good question! For one thing, as we head into the Christmas gift-buying season, some of you are looking for gifts/stocking stuffers. Furthermore, I think that question was answered last time so please allow me to reprint what I said back in 2012: So, by now, I think you get my point: We hesitate to offer the “Plugged In List of Family-Friendly Movies” because we know that somebody, somewhere, will feel we let them down. That said, I regularly have friends and acquaintances ask me about flicks I personally like. (It’s similar to a physician being approached with a “Hey, doc, I got this pain in my arm and was wondering …”) So, even though I know that this list will not be without some controversy, I’m going to be brave and jot down a few titles of films that I’ve found encouraging and inspiring. Instead of Plugged In’s list, let’s call this “Bob Waliszewski’s List of Family-Friendly Movies!” And please note that, as with all films, age-appropriateness comes into play. So with all that said, here’s my most recent alphabetized list of favorites: 42The 3356 UpThe ArtistBearsBelleBeyond the MaskThe Book ThiefCaptiveChasing MavericksCinderellaThe Drop BoxEverestFar from the Madding CrowdGod’s Not DeadThe Good LieGrace UnpluggedHooveyHundred Foot JourneyInside OutInstructions Not Included JerusalemLes MiserablesLincolnA Long Way OffThe LunchboxMan of SteelMcFarland USAMirror MirrorMoms’ Night OutMr. HolmesMuppets Most WantedMy All-AmericanNot TodayOctober BabyThe Odd Life of Timothy GreenOld Fashioned Patterns of Evidence: The ExodusThe Peanuts Movie Return to the Hiding PlaceRogue SaintsSaving Mr. BanksSeasons of GraySon of GodUnbrokenUnconditionalWar RoomWhen the Game Stands TallWoman in GoldWoodlawn Okay, Jake (and everyone else), give me your thoughts. I promise you there are no half-naked women in any of the above! ]]>
    ...
    (Review Source)

Crosswalk1
Cross Walk



(Reviewers' Site/Bio)

  • A Long Way Off More Product Placement than Parable
    Movies DVD Release Date: November 11, 2014Rating: PGGenre: Drama/FamilyRun Time: 105 min.Director: Andreas Wilcken Jr.Cast: John Diehl, Jason Burkey, Zoe Myers, Robert Davi, Johanna Jowett, Edie McClurg The story of the Prodigal Son is precious to Christians because, in a deep and personal way, we recognize it as our own. We see ourselves in the proud, selfish son who left home with a fortune he did not deserve, only to come back after wasting it all. Meanwhile, God is revealed in the character of the father who, despite everything his son has put him through, still runs out to embrace his broken child. No other parable paints such a simple, beautiful picture of the Gospel. So it’s frustrating when new adaptations don't show it the respect it deserves. To be fair, A Long Way Off had the odds stacked against it. The latest release from Word Films dubbed itself "the modern day story of the prodigal son" and tried hard to be your standard, well-intentioned Christian movie. The opening introduces viewers to a young man named Jake Abraham (Jason Burkey) who works on his family's farm until ambition and laziness lead him to start a new life in the big city. Despite this promising start, A Long Way Off inevitably fails not because of bland acting or cheap dialogue, but something much worse. It turns one of Jesus' most important lessons into a vehicle for selling merchandise. Roughly a third of the movie is plugged with scenes featuring conservative voices or religious products. At first, this aspect of the film is merely annoying, but as the story progresses it grows to dominate the background. In one instance, the scene jumps to a bookstore where the camera loiters over a table of Christian literature, set at just the right angle to ensure the titles really pop. You'd hope that would be enough of the on-screen endorsement, but instead the characters spend several minutes talking about these books, greeting the authors (who just happen to be there for a signing) and making purchases. The worst part is the movie tries to play this off as a sweet moment between the main couple, when there's no denying it's just shameless advertising. Now, let's be clear, there's nothing wrong with a little self-promotion. These days you'd be hard pressed to find any movie that doesn't advertise Pepsi or make some kind of political statement. The difference here is that this isn't a summer blockbuster from Michael Bay, this is a retelling of the parable of The Prodigal Son! Last I checked, Jesus never stopped mid-message to offer listeners a discount on fish or a chance to buy his new scroll. Making matters worse is the Gospel aspect of the film, which is presented with all the subtlety of a head-on train collision. googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-1'); }); Instead of allowing the parable to unfold on its own, Christian messages are shoehorned in all the wrong places. Jake is repeatedly accosted by characters urging him to return to his father, to attend church, to ask God's forgiveness, etc. Filling a film with Christian values isn't a bad thing, but when the film is a retelling of the Prodigal Son, are they really necessary? These instances of overkill ironically serve to diminish the parable, leeching the characters of their authority. Jake and his father become just another pair of American Christianists, not impeccable symbols for humanity and God. A Long Way Off could have been a decent movie. It had a good cast, nice acting, and a story that would resonate with Christian viewers. Unfortunately, the film is stuffed with so much product it feels like watching an infomercial. Audiences looking for a new spin on the old parable will be sorely disappointed at the waste of potential. All things considered, it would be best if Christians just stuck with reading Luke 15. CAUTIONS (may contain spoilers): googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-2'); }); if (gptClientWidth >= 992 && gptClientWidth <= 1000000) googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-3'); }); Drugs/alcohol: Alcoholic beverages are frequently consumed, some characters are implied to be drunk Language/Profanity: None Sex/Nudity: It is implied that Jake sleeps around; some flirting, dancing in a club; one character dresses seductively Violence: Jake ends up doing business with a mobster who has him severly beaten; he also threatens to kill Jake; Jake tries to buy a gun but is refused Religion/Morals: Lots of talk about God and Jesus, people invite Jake to Church, a Church provides for the farm and homeless shelter Publication date: September 3, 2014 ]]>
    ...
    (Review Source)

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