The Freedom of Silence (2013) – By Misty Layne

In the year 2030, America has become a twisted version of freedom. Truth is silenced and those with bold faith are now terrorists – terrorists who must be hunted down and destroyed. With the help of his friend Aaron, a Navy SEAL with expert computer skills, Zach devises a plan to breach the government’s lockdown on rogue webcasts. But his proclamation of faith comes with a heavy price. Now, imprisoned by the ruthless government official, Jack Johansen, Zach must fight for his life, his friends and his precious wife and children. But even with death pounding at his door, Zach must complete his mission – a mission from which he may never return.

The Freedom of Silence is a Christian film put out by Bridgestone Multimedia Group. Set in the not so far off future, this film tackles religious intolerance and the theory of Christian persecution that some believe will come sooner rather than later before the return of Christ and the apocalypse. I’m a fan of apocalyptic, dystopian films and this one fits in quite nicely (at least in reference to the apocalyptic part).

We start with a series of news broadcast talking about the passing of a bill that denies Christians the right to speak out about their faith and gives the government the right to gather up any Christians they may find that are speaking out for what amounts to “rehabilitation”. We then meet Zach and go through a sort of fast forward version of his life. As a child, he sees a man preaching on the streets who is arrested. This man drops his Bible which Zach goes back later for and from then on, he starts secretly reading and believing. Fast forward a few years and his parents have found the Bible in his room and tell a teenaged Zach that the book isn’t allowed in the house. Zach is having trouble understanding why people no longer have the right to personal beliefs. Fast forward again to Zach happily getting married and having two lovely little girls. Then from there we fast forward to Zach’s mission – with the help of his friend Aaron, he is setting up a broadcast that will be shown on every network and television they can break into. Amongst this, Aaron meets a woman who he falls deeply in love with, a single mother who has a secret.

The film goes back and forth between the past and present intercepting scenes of Zach being arrested and imprisoned and then tortured for information (i.e. the names of the people he has been holding Bible groups with) with scenes of the planning and implementing of his broadcast. The film covers a lot of ground and honestly seemed a little too long. My personal opinion is that a good 30 minutes could have been cut from this and it still would have been effective. Other than that though, most of the performances were solid particularly Tyler Messner as the stoic Zach. Jeffrey Staab as Jack Johansen, the ruthless government official, also puts in a nuanced performance as a man who does what he must seemingly as simply a cog of the system but with his own reasons for hating Christianity and God.

The cinematography was also pretty good considering this is a faith based film (not to be cruel but often times these kind of films just don’t have the budget of mainstream flicks). The scenes were well shot and the story itself was interesting if not a little overly dramatic. Overall, if this genre is one you’re a fan of then I think you’ll enjoy this one.

You can find out more about The Freedom of Silence at their IMDB page.