Another Sleeper Hit? A Review of “Overcomer”
Alex and Stephen Kendricks are former pastors from Georgia who have gone on to become successful filmmakers. The two brothers have put together six powerful faith-based movies over the past sixteen years. Their 2015 release “War Room” reached number one at the box office. Hopefully, their latest production “Overcomer” does likewise. I saw it two days ago.
Alex plays John Harrison, a high school basketball coach who loses players due to a local manufacturing plant shutting down and families moving away. Meanwhile, the principal (played by Priscilla Shirer who starred in “War Room”) asks John to oversee the school’s cross-country program. The coach is reluctant but agrees to do so. Only one student shows up for the tryout: a fifteen-year-old girl with asthma. Despite Hannah’s handicap, she gradually improves her running skills.
During a hospital visit with his pastor, John inadvertently meets another patient who had lost his sight and legs due to diabetes. As they get to know each other, John realizes Thomas is a former cross-country runner who happens to be Hannah’s biological father. They hadn’t been in contact since her birth. A reunion causes a rift with Hannah’s grandmother who raised her. Nevertheless, Thomas plays a significant role in Hannah’s next race.
The main message of “Overcomer” is that circumstances shouldn’t define us. Our identity as believers must be who we are in Christ. Even ministers need to be reminded that God’s love is not dependent on what they do for Him.
Admittedly, my expectations weren’t too high when first hearing about the subject matter of “Overcomer.” Just like with John Harrison, cross country is a sport I’m not excited about (although I took part in that during ninth grade). However, the storyline has many surprises that will leave you on the edge of your seat. I highly recommend this movie.
“Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” - 1 John 5:5