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Fireproof

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The Main Characters
--Caleb Holt (Kirk Cameron) is a fireman whose marriage is failing and is on the verge of divorce, until his father tells him he needs to fireproof his marriage.
--Catherine Holt (Erin Bethea) is the wife of Caleb, and sheís at witís end. She knows the marriage is ending and feels nothing can stop it.


The Setting
Albany, Georgia, which explains a lot of the accents used by some of the actors.


The Film (1:58:13)
This is quite an easy film to recap. A fireman, Caleb Holt, lives by the firemanís code: Never leave your partner behind. Unfortunately, this code isnít something he has applied to his life and his wife. His marriage is failing and is quickly headed for divorce. Both Caleb and his wife, Catherine, face temptations that only further the chasm between and the marriage seems doomed. Until, Calebís father tells him of a way to save his marriage and restore his faith. Itís called ďThe Love Dare,Ē a 40-day program to try and fix his marriage.


Movie Review
Once you get past the sometimes awkward acting (letís face it, most of the acting was pretty bad), you have a movie that at its heart is a great tale of trying to keep a marriage alive and what really lies beneath marriages; love and faith. It is a film with a great and important message. It relies heavily on themes of Christianity so if you are not Christian the movie may be a bit off-putting. In any event, it is a film with a beautiful message. It succeeds in its simplicity. It succeeds in the message it is meant to convey. It was a very powerful film when I watched it in the theaters and it is still a very powerful film. All married people will take a look at their marriages after seeing this and hopefully can find ways to change to avoid getting into dire straits like the Holtís did. This is definitely a recommended film.


DVD Features
A) Extras

1) Audio Commentary
Writer/Director Alex Kendrick and Writer/Producer Stephen Kendrick recorded this commentary. The Kendrickís are very spiritual and religious, but they are also filmmakers. They talk about a lot of the symbols used in the film, which was recorded basically on one camera. Everyone in the film were volunteers and from the Kendrickís local church community. They also do a really nice job explaining some of the things that go on in a firehouse. Sometimes I think they look too much into the symbolism but hearing people talk so openly about their religion is refreshing. One interesting thing was that in the last scene in the firehouse, Kirk is actually holding his real-life wife. She was flown in as a stand-in for Erin.

2) Deleted Scenes (15:09)
---A) Deleted Scenes Introduction (0:30)
Alex just says that these are deleted scenes. Thanks for that introduction!
---B) Hot Wings (2:49)
The firefighters discuss if God exists or not, while theyíre eating hot wings. Meanwhile, Wayne talks about knowing a kid named Peter Parker as a kid.
---C) Wedding Album (2:13)
Someone looks through the Holtís wedding album as Caleb blows off Catherine to work out, then sneaks back in to hear Catherine say that if she had the chance, she wouldnít have married him. Now we know why he was so pissed when he came home.
---D) Heroes (0:56)
Caleb thanks the guys who helped move the car off the train tracks.
---E) Heís In Shock (1:56)
Caleb goes into shock after saving the little girl from the fire.
---F) Mrs. Turner and News Story (1:46)
The mother of the girl Caleb saved comes into the hospital to thank him. We also get a news report of the child being saved.
---G) Caleb Prays At Cross (1:07)
This is like it says, Caleb prays at the cross he and his father found on their walk.
---H) Playing the Field (0:47)
This was pulled from a montage in the film, according to the opening screen. Basically, Catherine sees the doc playing the field.
---I) Rookie Joke (0:43)
This is another pulled from Montage thing. Itís a silly prank the firefighters pull on the rookie, dumping water on him.
---J) Terrell Talks to Caleb (2:04)
Terrell tells Caleb his wife moved out and Caleb helps him by giving him the Love Dare book.
---K) Parents Visit (1:11)
Calebís parents visit Catherine and Caleb. Calebís dad tells him he wants grandkids, and Caleb admits that God knew they werenít ready until they got their life in order.

3) Firegoofs/Jokes and Pranks (7:42)
We start with people flubbing their lines and other funny things. One of the funny things was Kirk using his cell phone and talking into it when all of a sudden, his phone rings for real! They show some pranks, too. This was entertaining. It seems the cast had a lot of fun on the set.

4) Fireproof: Behind the Scenes (22:50)
This is pretty polished and by the running time it looks like something that was made for TV. Catherine Holt introduces us to the church volunteers who played the firemen in the film, as well as the real firemen who helped train them for the house-fire scene. They show Scene 33 (a very meaningful number for Catholics) and it was the Salvation scene, where Caleb really decides he will do the Love Dare after 20 days of getting nowhere. They show the filming of the train scene, and that train looked like it got really close to that actor. We also look at how a lot of the cast and crew do multiple jobs on the set and everyone in the movie is there because they wanted to be there to help God.

5) Marriage Matters (7:23)
The Kendrickís, as well as the other producers, talk about the important theme behind this film, the institution of marriage. Marriage is something that most people donít take seriously anymore and the people behind the film donít think thatís right. This film is about rediscovering the spark that caused the marriage in the first place. Say what you will about all the talk of God, but a lot of what they say is very true.

6) Fireproof in 60 (1:34)
Alex Kendrick gives us a 60-second highlight clip of Fireproof. It pretty much sums everything up nicely, especially with the specially recorded ending.

7) Wayne on Wayne (3:21)
Wayne Floyd talks about being in his first film. Wayne was the firefighter who danced in the mirror to himself. He talks about the cast in a humorous manner.

8) Love Dare Promo (5:50)
Stephen Kendrick talks about the Love Dare book coming around the same time as Fireproofing your marriage, and were used together. The Love Dare book is a daily affirmation using bible quotes along with a challenge to try and let love drive their marriage. Kendrick makes the interesting point that marriage isnít a contract, but a covenant.

9) Fireproof Resources
This letís you look at certain scenes from the film that corresponds to aspect of Fireproofing your marriage. You can access the following scenes: He Said/She Said, The Train Is Coming, Salt & Pepper Shakers, The Cross, Breaking Free and Calebís Apology.

10) Previews
---A) Facing the Giants (2:14)
A coach uses the power of faith to help his football team.
---B) Faith Like Potatoes (1:45)
A man takes his family to a new home, right into a potato drought. Only his faith gets him through it.
---C) The Note (0:40)
A woman gets a note from a plane crash, and writes about it.


B) Audio/Video
The video is presented in Widescreen (1.85:1) and can be heard in 5.1 Dolby Digital. I didnít have a problem with either transfer. Itís a little low-budget compared to the big movies out there, but it stands up well.


C) Packaging / Liner Notes
Just the standard case with no liner notes included, what everyoneís doing nowadays.


D) Easter Eggs
None


Overall Review
I didnít expect anything from the DVD, just the movie and thatís about it, but there was a lot crammed on here. The commentary was quite interesting, the featurettes were a lot of fun to watch and also very revealing. I mentioned before in the movie review that this type of movie may not be for everyone, especially if you arenít Catholic or religious, but the movie is a very refreshing look at marriage and how holy and precious it is, no matter what your religious beliefs are. The acting isnít the best, but once you get around that you have yourself a meaningful film, and a meaningful DVD.


Overall Rating
9.0


10.0      Perfect
9.0-9.5  Near Perfect, Highly Recommended
8.0-8.5  Really good disc, Recommended
7.0-7.5  Good DVD, Mildly recommended
6.0-6.5  Above Average DVD. Mildest of mild recommendations
5.0-5.5  Decent all around disc, but catch it on TV
4.0-4.5  Great Movie but horrible DVD
3.0-3.5  Horrible movie but great DVD
2.0-2.5  Thereís at least some merit to this DVD, but not much.
1.0-1.5  Horrible DVD, donít even bother
0.0-0.5  Worst DVD ever

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