Amazing Grace is period drama revolving around William Wilberforce and his life long struggle to end the Slave Trade in Britain. It shows clearly a man who struggled with many facets in his life. As a politician, he struggled with a call from God, assuming that God would want him to be come a Priest, whilst his closet friend wanted him to be Gods voice in parliament.
Through his personal life he struggled with defeat after defeat, and a determination to win, that almost killed him.
In the end of course we all know that Wilberforce won his fight to abolish Slavery, so what was the journey like?
Amazing Grace is a brilliant movie, not just because it’s built on the back of a timeless, inspirational story, but because of how that story is told. We get to see Wilberforce being mentored by the much older John Newton, the man who inspired him in his fight against slavery. The movie also illustrates the Biblical principles of Ecclesiastes 4:12, where we see both Wilberforce and William Pitt joined in battle, working together to gather allies to fight for the cause.
We also get to see the role of women elevated.
When Wilberforce is close to death, his body racked with illness, his parents try and work some matchmaking magic, which initially fails, but in the end (they were very persistent parents) they finally get together, and yes, marry. His parents reasoning; because it’s apparently a known fact that a married man is a healthy man.
This echo’s the Biblical account of Genesis, where God says; “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” Of course helper isn’t a very PC word in today’s society, but then nor is it a very good translation. The original Hebrew is ezer kenegdo, which can be translated life-saving companion or intimate ally.
An intimate ally she was, as she encouraged and helped him in he renewed struggle to get his anti slavery bill passed.
All of these components work together, aided by some great acting and the brilliant direction of Michael Apted, and some stunning locations and sets.
Action packed it isn’t, but this is one movie you’ll come away from encouraged and with a renewed vigour to do something good for the world!
Food for thought
The objects of the present life fill the human eye with a false magnification because of their immediacy. – William Wilberforce
Reviewed by: Jonathan Read.
Rating: PG – Contains Adult Themes.
Duration: 118 mins.
Genre: Drama, Biography.
Actors: Ciaran Hinds, Ioan Gruffudd, Rufus Sewell, Michael Gambon, Albert Finney, Romola Garai, Jeremy Swift, Youssou N’Dour.
Director: Michael Apted.
Release Date: Available Now.