CAST: Anton Dekker, Jaco Muller, Lucky Koller, David James, Kate Normington, Robin Smith, Norman Anstey


RUNNING TIME: 110 minutes

RATING: 4 stars (out of 5)

Tina George

Events surrounding Angus Buchan’s 2010 Mighty Men Conference become the heart-wrenching tale of this docu-drama.

Buchan’s a mere potato farmer turned evangelist and this semi-auto-biographical film looks at the growth of his ministry from the 1970s to the present.

It starts with his story, then goes into the personal journeys of the three ordinary SA men in the build up to their attendance of the conference.

The film opens with footage of Buchan preaching to 250 000 men.

We see how he found his calling, originally preaching to the mealies in his cornfields and eventually working his way up to real people.

The crux of the film, though, is the three intertwined stories of Lucky Nzimande (Koza), who attempts to hijack a former cop; André Cloete (Muller), an alcoholic young man on the brink of self-destruction; and John Peters (Dekker), a middle-aged panel beater, whose life is falling apart.

None of them are committed Christians, but each are touched in some way by Buchan’s words.

Director Hamman does a superb job in captivating the audience with these real-life scenarios. He shows day-to-day issues South Africans have to face.

The message hits home as viewers will grapple with their responses to similar situations and heavy emphasis is placed on the importance of relationships. The human need for love and especially the relationship between children and fathers is foregrounded.

It’s the film’s score that stirs up the deepest emotions. The most uplifting music and lyrics can be heard by SA composer Mauritz Lotz along with international gospel artist Michael W Smith.

What makes the film appealing to all is that it does not push a Christian agenda, but tells of ordinary people who found a way to be better people. It just happened to be through an evangelist.

If you liked … Faith Like Potatoes … you’ll like this.