Sunday, May 28, 2023

It Was Playing in a Theater Near Me... Will It Play in a Theater Near You?

Oh Me of Little Faith

It has never been easier to make a film. But getting people to know about your film is a good deal more difficult.

A couple of weeks ago, Mindy and I went to a local theater to see a free film. Not only the film was free – they offered free popcorn as well. 

Mindy had come across an invitation to the premiere screening of Oh Me of Little Faith, a documentary by Emma Yeager – and I’m always happy to go to the show. The film is about, well, Emma Yeager. It documents a miracle in her life.

A few years ago, Emma was pregnant with unexpected and unusual medical complications that led to a cesarean birth. She was quite weak for days afterward, though her doctors had expected her to improve rapidly after her son’s birth. Among other unanticipated difficulties, she was unable to walk. In spite of months of physical therapy and hard work on her part, she was eventually told that she should not expect to walk again. 

Shortly after that, Emma was part of the worship team as she and friends attended a women’s retreat with their church.  During a worship service, after a time of prayer, the worship leader asked Emma to stand up and walk. And she did.

I’m sorry, I should have warned you. SPOILERS. 

The film is well crafted, keeping an element of suspense even though the subject of the film greeted guests in the lobby and welcomed the audience before the movie began. Emma interviewed family, friends, her physical therapist, and her pastor. She is credited as writer, director, cinematographer, editor, and, I suppose, star (if documentaries have stars). Interviewing well is not a common skill, but it’s definitely one of the chief skills Yeager brings to the project.

I believe it’s important in a world full of skeptics, it is a worthy thing to present credible testimony that shows there is a God, and He is at work in the world. Sure, people can come up with alternate explanations for Yeager’s healing, but her presentation makes it difficult to dismiss the possibility of the supernatural out of hand.

But as I mentioned at the beginning, once a film is made, how does the filmmaker get the movie out in the world?

There are a number of sites where one can release a film, but how will anyone ever hear of it?

Yeager is trying to figure that out. Drawing from her church, the theater was full that Saturday morning of the screening. We hadn’t known Emma before that morning but learned about it through a local news site. We’re following her on social media now, and we’ve learned about another local screening here in West Seattle later this month (Tickets are available through Eventbrite). She and her team of supporters are researching festivals.

The new dream of filmmakers is Netflix. I wish her well. (I might even resubscribe to the service if they picked up Oh Me of Little Faith – if only for a month.)

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