Back in April, I read about a fascinating family on Ken Ham’s blog. I grew up hearing about missionaries as a girl, so the kinds of things the parents are doing were important, but not too new to me.
What did catch my attention was their boys. I’ve got four of my own and I’m getting tired of the heroes on their minds being superheros or flawed intergalactic warriors.
Not only was there a blog post about the Wild family, Answers in Genesis was offering a DVD they had made themselves. When the time was right (read: I decided to use some business cash), I ordered the movie and hoped for the best.
Answers in Genesis has pretty high standards for the materials they carry, but sometimes it can be painfully obvious a product is being carried by Christian retailers just because they like the message, not because it’s high quality.
Soon after my DVD arrived I gathered my kids for a showing.
We were all delighted!
First, I’ve got to mention that God’s got to be tickled about their title. There’s a mostly observational science based animal show on PBS with a similar name. It’s one of my kids’ favorites. Nothing could be more natural than using their last name and relationship as a theme, but it just wouldn’t have worked as perfectly if they had been “The Fields Brothers”. God knows what He’s doing!
The story line: apparently the plan is to release a new DVD several times a year, so it doesn’t have a traditional story arc. We are introduced to each brother, their parents, their new house, their local jungle, their neighbor, and the nearly finished project the family and community are working on: a mountain side airstrip to allow planes to reach them.
None of us found the lack of cinematic progression a problem at all. We were drawn in and held just following along on a typical day with the guys. Their environment, pets, friends, and practically everything are so different from what we experience we didn’t need the usual conflict or character transformation to hold our attention.
Here’s the secret of this video’s power:
…reality-based video series that shows even more about life in the jungle, from the perspective of Mike and Libby’s four sons, ages 10–16. It’s shot and edited primarily by the Wild brothers themselves, with a little help from mom and dad! ~Ken Ham
Even the youngest brother had no trouble holding out the camera they use to take us along for his favorite jungle hike. Thanks to modern technology the quality of the picture is great, but the size of the camera has to be miniscule. We watched on a 17″ monitor, but I assume things will stay sharp even with a much larger screen.
The brothers also do a great job with editing, (rock) music, and set up. My guess is they’ve watched enough shows to see how the professionals set up their story, and they’ve learned those techniques well. It never felt forced, but I was repeatedly impressed with how well produced their video was.
My boys, of course, didn’t really care about all that. What they cared about was the brothers, their personalities, adventures, and the new experiences the Wild’s were letting them in on. In fact, their favorite bit was an extra scene of the brothers on their porch skinning a large python their younger neighbor had killed with his machete.
That’s a guy movie for you. 😀
I give this DVD one of my rare, 5 star, “every family should get this” reviews
There wasn’t much about creation apologetics in the film. They mention their belief briefly, but it wasn’t the point of the video. I’m looking forward to them having a chance to include more about this as they produce more videos. I’m also looking forward to more of their family’s kid-safe introduction to animism and the power of Jesus to transform lives held in bondage.
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Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity. I Timothy 4:12
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