One of the Most Unique (and Engaging) Movies Ever Made

I felt as if I was living inside the body of a Yanomamo tribesman. Honest — this movie is stirring.

It’s always nice to hear endorsements of your work from people you really respect. Doug Lucas is is very involved in cutting-edge training and information related to seeing the gospel transform every culture. He publishes a weekly e-mail update with news of all kinds at Brigada.org. Here’s a review of our film, The Enemy God, that Doug wrote recently.

“Yai Wanonabalewa (The Enemy God)” has to be one of the most unique movies ever produced… and it’s now been released on DVD.

Hear me well: This is an intense film… It is sometimes graphic, sometimes heart-wrenching, but always engaging. My advice for professors of seminary classes looking for something related to spiritual warfare, anthropology, world religions, and Cross-cultural communications: Run, don’t walk, to order a copy. To anyone working in folk religions, you finally have an inside view to what goes on “inside their heads.”

I can’t even put into words the “point of view” from which the story is told… because it seems to be totally Yanomamo… cross-cultural. I felt as if I was living inside the body of a Yanomamo tribesman. I spent much of my time fearing what might come next. Honest — this movie is stirring. If you have a missionary working among tribal peoples, this will give you a new perspective on prayer and its potential to make a difference. Don’t expect a heart-warming, feel-good story like something from a Disney kids’ film. Expect to be sobered. Expect to experience a perspective you’ve never felt before.

Read the whole article from Brigada.org here: One of the Most Unique (and Engaging) Movies Ever Made.

Book Of The Year: Growing Up Yanomamö

…was recently voted “Book of the Year, Biographies” by the Christian Small Publishers Association.

Growing Up Yanomamö
Growing Up Yanomamö

I was excited to hear that a friend’s book, Growing Up Yanomamö, was recently voted “Book of the Year, Biographies” by the Christian Small Publishers Association.

“… a bit of Huck Finn, with an Amazon twist.” says Simon Romero, Andean Bureau Chief, “The New York Times”

It’s a fun read, about Mike Dawson’s years growing up in the jungle as the child of missionary parents. He also reveals some very personal trials and his experiences of how God’s faithfulness is demonstrated in every circumstance.

You can buy the book here on our web site. Look for the special pricing on the book bundled with The Enemy God DVD.

Mike also happens to be one our our Executive Producers on The Enemy God film. He brought continuity between our indigenous partners and our filmmaking team that was essential to making a truly authentic film.

Voice of the Spirit from the Amazon

What can we learn from our indigenous brothers and sisters who have discovered the truth about the Enemy God?

What can we learn from our indigenous brothers and sisters who have discovered the truth about the Enemy God? Come learn for yourself at two special screenings of Yai Wanonabälewä: The Enemy God, April 13 in Chicago and April 16 & 17, in Southern California. Click here for more information.

Imagine a true story that addresses the deep issues of life; does the spiritual world exist and how can I know the truth about it? How do we deal with ideas that threaten and change who we are as a community? Of all of the spiritual voices that speak to us, is there One that should be obeyed above all the others? The Enemy God is a film that tells that story in a way that is attracting audiences who would never see a typical Christian film.

In this award-winning motion picture of life and death in the Amazon rainforest, The Enemy God recounts the life of Shake, an extraordinary Yanomamö shaman. His interaction with the spirit world gives us an astonishing insider’s look at what is taking place in the spiritual battle for his people. It exposes the reality and deception of demons in the spirit world and vividly demonstrates how the gospel transforms a culture.

THE ENEMY GOD – Movieguide Review

TEG Poster

“This is one of the great stories. It is a highly recommended movie.” – Dr. Ted Baeher, Movieguide.org

Read the whole review here: ENEMY GOD – Christian Movie Review.

Dr. Ted Baehr of Movieguide is a fan of the book Spirit of the Rainforest. That book recounts some of the same historical events found in our film, Yai Wanonabälewä: The Enemy God. The same community of Yanomamö in Venezuela came to us almost ten years ago to ask us to make a film about  their lives and the spiritual freedom that they have found.

It is very gratifying to us to have his official, public, review of the film. We feel he did a very honest and insightful review of the film, from a specifically Christian point-of-view. What I like about Dr. Baehr’s reviews is that he digs deep in any film, secular or “Christian”, and examines worldview and the context for content that may be challenging or offensive to some.

As always, we are looking for ways to spread the word about the film. The world is crowded with content. Some of it is worthy, other, not so much. If you read this and read the Movieguide review, help us spread the love!

[Of course, you can buy the DVD for yourself right here: BUY THE DVD]

A chance to see a film that will open your eyes!

Dr. Ted Baehr says, “The Enemy God is captivating. This is one of the great stories. It is a highly recommended movie.”

The Enemy God is captivating. This is one of the great stories. It is a highly recommended movie.

– Dr. Ted Baehr, Movieguide

Yai Wanonabälewä: The Enemy God is a film that will challenge your view of the spiritual and physical world, through the eyes of an indigenous shaman. It tells the true story of the freedom that came to his people when he began to question the spirits who had taught him their traditional ways.

We have some new screenings of this award-winning film scheduled for this spring. If you live in Ontario, Canada or in Southern California, you will want to catch these showings. Click the link below for more details.

The Enemy God web site: Upcoming Screenings Post

We are adding more screenings as we are able. If you would like to host a screening, please let me know.

Patience, a Gift No One Wants to Earn

Our film just received a great review from a well-known critic. I can’t publish it yet because they’re proofing it and haven’t told us of a release date. But, I want to give just a hint (from a very comprehensive review) here:

THE ENEMY GOD is a low budget but very well made movie. It cares deeply about authenticity and achieves that goal with the set direction, the battle scenes, and the portrayals of the Yanomamö. … The script is powerful… THE ENEMY GOD is much better than most Hollywood movies.

This is one of the great stories. It is a highly recommended movie.

The main reason I’m posting this today is because I have been reminded of the value of patience and persistence. We’ve been working on this film for almost 8 years. That’s crazy! And it will never be a blockbuster commercial success; we know that.

When we got the e-mail with the review today, we passed it on to our Writer/Director, Christopher Bessette. He deserves the accolades. And here’s what he wrote back to me, in part:

You know that you and Matt have made a completely unconventional movie. It is cutting edge because no one has done something like this before. People don’t realize it yet – but the film will have longevity because of it. Like it has been said before they will be looking it up in 200 years in the history books. People don’t realize it now but slowly and eventually it will grow and grow and they will.

Zaven (Katchaturian) from the Arpa Film Festival told me personally that they were considering giving the actors awards but then they began to question as to whether or not they were watching reality or drama.  When they realized it was drama they gave me the award. That was very kind of them… and it is a God thing for sure, but trust me… eventually it will come to pass that greater masses will realize what this means.

Isaiah 55:11 – God’s Word will not return empty but it will accomplish that for which He sent it.

God is with us!

What Christopher’s note reminded me of is that, just because I’m tired of working one more day to make this film a reality, writing more e-mails trying to get attention for the story, Twittering and Facebooking without huge followings, God is working through the film. Matt and I began it with the assumption that it was totally out of our league and was something God needed to do. He did, and continues to make His story known in wider and wider circles, where it is still unknown.

Do we have the patience and perseverance to see things through? Sometimes I think I know when God is saying to just quit something. Other times, I depend on His Spirit to confirm that, even though the breakthrough hasn’t yet come, it doesn’t mean that God has changed His mind.