It’s Based on a True Story… and Really Happened
A film like this one probably wouldn’t work if it was fiction. Think about it: A boy falls through a lake. He doesn’t breathe for 45 minutes. His mom prays. And he regains his pulse. If it were fiction, moviegoers wouldn’t take it seriously.
The plot works, though, because it really happened. Nurses witnessed it. Doctors did, too. “There's 301 pages of medical records detailing everything about this story,” said the real-life pastor Jason Noble. “There's nothing made up. … It doesn't need any embellishment.”
As Franklin put it, Breakthrough is a superhero movie with a different kind of superhero. “There's so many films that celebrate superheroes. … But they're all imagination. This is real. What Joyce did is a real superhero doing a real superpower, which is faith and praying.” Others interceded for John, too, Franklin noted: the town, the community, the first responders and the school. “They all interceded for one [person]. To me, if we do that, the whole culture changes for the better.”
Content warnings: Breakthrough includes discussion of death, a scene of teenagers fighting for their life in a pond, and a scene where a boy is thought to be dead. It contains no sexuality and only minor language (two instances of h-ll, two instances of OMG).
Breakthrough is rated PG for thematic content including peril.
Entertainment rating: 5 out of 5 stars.
Family-friendly rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.
Photo courtesy: 20th Century Fox