Americans smuggling weapons into Uganda isn’t cute when Michele Bachmann’s campaign aides get busted for it, and however much the presence of adorable, vulnerable orphans ups the ante, the idea that non-state actors should take on hunting down violent warlords themselves, um, merits scrutiny. It does not seem likely that Machine Gun Preacher will provide that analysis, despite the presence of Jessica Chastain making fairly reasonable statements about weapons trafficking:
This isn’t an explicitly evangelical production, though one of the production companies involved, Mpower Pictures, once put together a movie that purported to use science to prove the truth of the gospels. But this strikes me, unfortunately, as the kind of movie that could fairly effectively sell audiences that aren’t inherently receptive on Christianity without requiring the message to be so hidden that it eliminates the picture’s efficacy. Along the way, it looks like it might also sell some really dubious approaches to horrible conflicts that demand, but don’t have, emotionally satisfying responses that also do justice.