Bad Movie Club: Last Ounce of Courage

2012 propagandistic nonsense

Bad Movie Rating: 2/5 (Josh: 4/5; Johnny: 1/5)

Rating: 3/20

Plot: Former veteran and current father of a deceased soldier Bob Revere--no relation to Paul, as far as I know--is tired of the wars waged on American values, religion in our schools, and Christmas. He uncovers his motorcycle, props up his American flag, and decides to go to battle. America!

It's surprising that a Christian film can end up this tone deaf. There are two things I'm genuinely shocked about with stuff like this. First, it's how wrong they all are. Even the most God-fearing, MAGA-frothing, tea-bagger should be able to watch this plea to give Christians back their First Amendment rights and say, "Wait a second; that's not what the founding fathers actually meant." The "rights" that the deluded producers of this propaganda piece are arguing for would essentially create a situation where one group--a majority, I suppose--is shitting all over the rights of all the other groups. Only the most ignorant Americans slumming around the swampish Bible belt are going to miss that, right? And that's the second thing that genuinely shocks me--the idea that there are a lot of people who are going to buy this crap, let it conjure up all these irrational fears about how there are these nebulous forces trying to take away our right to say prayers, nodding along with the idea that our country was founded by a bunch of Christian men who would never harm and Injun or mistreat Africans, clutch their Bibles close to their chests as they cry out about how it's not fair that the creation story isn't taught in schools anymore.

If you want a little insight on how Trump won the election, all you need to do is think about how this movie was made and how the audience for this movie believes in it. The people who aren't fully understanding the beauty and fairness of the First Amendment are the same people misinterpreting (or being fooled into misinterpreting) the Second Amendment.

Who is the audience for this anyway? I assume most people would say that it's Christians, but that would definitely be a case of preaching to the choir. I think this actually might be an attempt to sway opinion about these First Amendment issues. And there's not a person alive who is going to watch this and think, "Hmm. I never looked at it like that. I'm convinced!" It's a preposterous failure and gives me an excuse to cut the movie's rating in half.

So thick with symbols and cliches and symbols that are cliches, the whole thing feels like the kind of thing that Ted Nugent and Mike Pence and a few of their buddies could circle-jerk to. Veteran Marshall R. Teague--a real man in movies that other real men can appreciate like Armageddon, The Rock, and Road House--is a growling ball of hammy masculinity. He rides around on his motorcycle with the flag on the back like he's going to single-handedly defeat ISIS with nothing more than a prayer and his majestic jowls. His character is some sort of "mayor" (one that can be "fired" rather than impeached) and a pharmacist. He's a busy guy, and having two jobs forces him to find times to squeeze in all his whining.

And who's the antagonist in this? Other than Satan (off-screen), it's none other than Fred Williamson. He's not a Fred Williamson who kicks or does anything remotely cool (unless being 100% right with every single one of his lines is "remotely cool"), but it's nonetheless still Fred Williamson.

What the fuck am I doing in this movie? 

There's also the exact sort of motorcycle gang you'd expect to see in a Christian movie except it's apparently led by a little person. We meet him and them in the pharmacy where our protagonist treats one of them who has a gunshot wound. Because that's something that pharmacists do in these Christian movie worlds. I couldn't figure out the character's name to get him in the running for the Billy Curtis award at the end of the year, but trust me, the movie would have been a lot better if his name was Ounce and he was the protagonist of the movie. Most of the other characters are either children or grown people who seem to have the intelligence of children. I did enjoy one strange teenage girl who claimed she "got a Medal of Honor once." I think she was improvising, and they decided not to do another take because it was almost time to pray. 

The worst thing about all this is that we wanted to watch a religious movie for Easter and ended up accidentally watching a Christmas movie. And you know what should offend Christians more than people trying to take away our First Amendment right to force non-believers to hear us prayer? The Christmas decorations they scrambled together for this thing! 

This isn't a good-bad movie despite what Josh would tell you. He's a sucker for these religious things. In fact, I imagine this would make most people who watch it a little angry. It is, however, fun to watch with a couple guys and make fun of. 

Important note: I am not anti-Christian, at all. I want to make that clear. 

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