An Interview with God follows the story of Paul Asher (Brenton Thwaites), a journalist who has returned home after covering the war in Afghanistan.
Asher is struggling in his relationship with his wife and is also having trouble staying away from work while he is on stress leave. Instead of resting after his stint in Afghanistan, he decides to take on an interview with a man who claims to be God. An interview which will, in turn, change his perception and help Asher zero in on some of the things that are going on in his own life.
From the first scene, it is clear that the movie is filmed in such a way that the colours and performances are a little exaggerated. Immediately this lets the audience know that while this is a ‘movie’ for all intents and purposes, the message of the film is to be focused on rather than the flick itself. This is akin to movies such as The Shift (2009) based on the works of Wayne Dyer or Conversations with God (2006) based on the works of Neale Donald Walsch.
As this is the case, the performances are a little over-the-top, such as in a scene where Asher’s wife is sobbing in a crowded place, or in moments where Asher is becoming infuriated with the man who he is interviewing. I do believe this crisp feel was intentional as this directional style really focused on letting the audience know how each character was feeling. These hyperbolic emotions make the film seem more like a play rather than a traditional movie.
The way the story is told is quite clever with its misdirection as the audience is led to believe one thing on many occasions, only for it to be revealed later on that this wasn’t the case. Furthermore, there are plenty of golden nuggets in the film that could be taken away and applied to one’s life. For instance, Asher asks God if the devil is real to which God replies “yes, but he only has as much power as we give him”.
While the story was clearly developed around the portrayed messages, it can be hard to establish exactly what these messages are. For instance, I’m not sure if the overall message was simply to keep the faith, to keep praying, or to not be afraid of death. With a clearer motive, this film could have had a stronger impact.
Director Perry Lang’s first feature film in 23 years since the John Sayles-scripted Men of War (1994) starring Dolph Lundgren.
Deserted Island Movie Collection: Since I would have a lot of time to kill, I would bring all of John Ford’s movies (there are over 140 after all).
Best Movie Snack: Love a good cheese platter.