|In this dramatic journey of restoration and salvation, we witness the harsh realities in both the rough streets of Washington, D.C. and the sleepy rural town of Waterproof, Louisiana. Single mother, Tyree Battle (April Grace) struggles to keep her young son, Thaniel (Cordereau Dye) away from the gang-plagued city streets that he is mixed up in. Under severe gang pressure, Thaniel accidentally shoots Eli Zeal, a lonely widowed Jewish shopkeeper (Burt Reynolds), in a botched robbery attempt. Tyree, protecting her son from the law, kidnaps Eli and flees to her hometown of Waterproof that she has been estranged from for fifteen years, having left behind her long-suffering mother (Ja’net Dubois), her hard drinking older brother Big (Anthony Lee) and her slow-minded younger brother Natty (Orlando Jones).|
Wounded and slowly recovering, Eli initially struggles with his forced captivity, but soon finds an understanding in the power of forgiveness. He begins to break down racial barriers by fitting in with the African American family that has taken him in – especially with Grandpa Sugar, (Whitman Mayo) the charmingly wise family patriarch.
The irrepressible faith of Tyree’s mother is the glue that ultimately holds the family together as she welcomes back her ‘prodigal daughter’ with open arms. When Thaniel innocently looks at a portrait of Jesus and asks “Who’s the white dude?” she realizes how desperately her daughter and grandson need her guidance to submit to Christ. The unplanned family reunion causes the entire family to confront their own deeply buried secret that eventually brings about an emotional and spiritual rebirth for all, with the help of Eli.
In a classic situation of “time heals all wounds”, Tyree finds the courage to face her mother, relieve her older brother of his burden and experience the love her family and small town have to offer. And, Eli, through the southern hospitality of Tyree’s family, begins to heal his wounded soul and reconsiders his own future.
Anyone who has ever struggled with faith will identify with this film. You’ll want to stand up and cheer when a lost loved one comes home and overcomes internal struggles that help them make their way to the altar.
Closed Captions: Yes
Performance Rights: Cloud Ten Productions
Theatrical Release Date: Monday, January 1, 2001
Product Release Date: Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Length/Run Time: 94 Min.
Produced By: Frank Capra Jr., Craid Fincannon, Jonathan Cornick, Roland Joffe
Directed By: Barry Berman
Only available in North American format.
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