Poster Spotlight: Machine Gun Preacher

When it rain, it pours! Last week, I posted the trailer of one of my most anticipated movies out this Fall, Coriolanus. Today we’ve got an update of Machine Gun Preacher in the form of an official poster ahead of its world premiere at Toronto International Film Festival next month. Man, I wish I could attend!

In case this is the first time you’ve heard of it, here’s the premise:

The movie is based on a true story of Sam Childers, a former drug-dealing biker tough guy who found God and became a crusader hundreds of Sudanese children who’ve been kidnapped and pressed into duty as soldiers in the Lord’s Resistance Army.

Unlike Coriolanus, this movie is clearly a starring vehicle for Gerard Butler.

Click to see a larger version courtesy of JustJarred

Anybody else get the Inglourious Basterds‘ vibe? And 300 as well obviously w/ Butler looking very Leonidas-y against the sepia-toned backdrop. As you know, I’ve been looking forward to this film for some time as the story and ministry of Sam Childers intrigued me. But this poster seems to suggest all the badassery aspect of the story, but not so much the compassionate/humanitarian side. I mean, yes sure there are brutality abounds in Childers’ autobiography Another Man’s War, but it’s not exactly violence for violence sake on Childers’ part. From what I’ve read so far, his primary mission is to save the Sudanese children whose parents have been killed by the Lord’s Resistance Army and the kids themselves are subject to torture and violent death.

I sincerely hope filmmaker Marc Forster won’t overindulge on Childers’ dark past with the [more marketable] sex and violence stuff, but also spend a great deal of time showing how God transformed this man and enabled him to build his ministry in Africa. Whether one agrees or not with his philosophy, I do believe his heart is in the right place. The film also stars Kathy Baker, Michelle Monaghan, Michael Shannon (the soon-to-be General Zod) and Souleymane Sy Savane, the Ivorian actor who received rave reviews for his performance in Goodbye Solo.

The US release date is set on September 23 (limited release). Hope the trailer will be released soon.


What are your thoughts of the poster and/or the film? 

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26 thoughts on “Poster Spotlight: Machine Gun Preacher

  1. Cool poster. I agree it’s got that Inglorious Basterds vibe, but if you hadn’t mentioned it I probably would not have seen it. Based on the poster I’d be interested to see it, so I guess the poster does its job.

    1. I see more of a District 9 vibe. Now I would love to see Butler spit out awesome lines like:

      “Get your fokkin’ tentacle out of my face! ”

      “I would never have any kind of… pornographic activity with a fokkin’ creature! “

      1. Hmmm, I didn’t see that before but now that you mention it. Ahah, Butler could totally pull off those lines, w/ Scottish instead of South African accent though 🙂 If only he and Sharlto could star in a sci-fi together, now that would be awesome!

        1. That would indeed be awesome.
          If they could squeeze Cillian or maybe Cumberbatch…it’ll make a perfect movie. Now we need a good scriptwritter who can mix those talented men in a sci-fi movie 😉

  2. Ted S.

    That’s kind of interesting poster, from what I’ve read so far I assume the film will have more dramatic theme. But after seeing this poster, I’m assuming it’s more action/adventure type of a film. I’m gonna have to wait and see the trailer before deciding if it’s something I’d see on the big screen or just a rental.

    1. Well, I hope the dramatic part isn’t lost in this film… there’s more to Childers’ story than the shoot-em-up action stuff in run-of-the-mill thrillers. We’ll see how the trailer looks I guess.

  3. Very you Ruth!! Very you!!

    I am so sad that he wasn’t at Big Screen and I was unable to kidnap him for you.

    In fact the Sunday showcases were the worst of the weekend…I will tell more tomorrow….

    1. @ Custard – ahah, that’s too bad matey… when I didn’t see a big package delivered to my door last night I knew he didn’t show 😦

      @ Dezzy, yes I’d be willing to ‘share’ him with you… we’ll have a big party at my house w/ Butler as an honorary guest then. Provided that he leave off the AK-47 of course 😀

  4. Hi, Ruth and company:

    Great looking poster and back story to the film. I’m with Nostra on the poster’s ‘Inglorious Basterds’ vibe. I’ve a feeling that ‘Machine Gun Preacher’ is going to please audiences and make money no matter what.

    1. Hi Jack, I don’t know if it’ll make money, I hope it does. Generally a religious (esp. Christian theme) is not popular in Hollywood, but then again there was Passion of the Christ making $300+ mil so who knows. I just hope it’ll bring attention to Childers’ ministry for the sake of those poor kids.

  5. PrairieGirl

    The poster looks very much like he is there to help the children and emphasizes exactly how he goes about it. It’s awesome, I love it. The only thing I would change would be for GB to be holding hands with the child.

    1. Glad you think so, Becky. I was thinking the same thing about him holding the kid’s hand, it’s a small detail but I think it’d speak volumes about him being the protector of the kids. Can’t wait to see the trailer!

  6. If I hadn’t read this blog I think Machine Gun Preacher might just have passed me by, even my first glance at the poster didn’t do much for me but having actually stopped to read the post I think I may take care to not dismiss Gerard Butler images so quickly next time….

    1. PrairieGirl

      Now that I look again at the poster closer, he has his left hand out-stretched, not to his side like someone normally would without the child there. And with the direction the child’s eyes are looking, it’s almost as if GB is gesturing for the boy to stay back away from what ever disturbance the boy might be looking at with those wide, questioning eyes. And the boy is soooo young, too. Doesn’t look older than about three or four years old.

      1. I know Becky, these kids are really, really young. I saw another interview w/ Childers at his orphanage and there were some as young as 2-3. I love how he said that he’s not only interested in saving their lives but also in rehabilitating them and give them a trick of the trade so they can survive on their own without their parents. He also wants the kids to be kids, they showed them playing soccer, singing together, etc. at the orphanage.

  7. Very interesting, given the premise, that nothing about the poster alludes to his reformed beliefs as Sam Childers. Not even a cross around his neck, or a tattoo of such, or anything like that. It would’ve been cool to see something like a worn Bible in his other hand or something.

    Just an observation, given that it focuses on that part of his life. hmm

    1. Hi T, I’m glad you feel the same way. I’m really hoping to see that ‘spiritual’ side of the subject matter, I mean I realize it probably won’t sell tickets, but portraying him like a vigilante just isn’t exactly accurate. Childers is NOT a vigilante, his presence is welcomed by the government and he hunts down bad people to protect the kids. So yeah, a glimpse of his faith should be reflected here as that is what drove him to do what he does. I sure hope we will see that side in the film.

  8. To be honest, Ruth…the title sounds so cheap. I think the biography’s title is muuch much better, another man’s war sounds more serious than machine gun preacher.

    As for the poster, I don’t get any vibe…hahaha. Gerry looks tough and handsome, as always.

    I like the basic of the story…hope they changed the tittle tho 😉

    1. Hmmm, how is that cheap? I’m not crazy about it but it’s catchy. I think Another Man’s War is a good title (after all that’s the title of the book) but it might convey that it’s a ‘war’ movie, y’know. I don’t think they’ll change the title at this point. Ha..ha.. yes GB looks tough and handsome, I agree, he fits this role perfectly I think.

      1. Welll…how do I explain it. When I read the title, I have this image of a man in priest robe holding a big machine gun trying to look as mean as possible and somehow that kinda image is a bit cheezy for me. It might be just me who think like that. For me, a movie of kindness supposed to have a better title that can convey the image nicely. I hope you understand what I am trying to say

        But…then again, the story itself is more important than the title 😉
        I have read you newest post but haven’t commented yet because I want to see the trailer first before commenting. Will see it tomorrow.

  9. DCW

    I saw the movie with Sam Childers last week. The sex scene is fully clothed and in a car at a distance. The violence is watchable–not gory. There’s a good balance between drama and action. The story is well told.

    1. Hi DCW, thanks for the info! Do you know Mr. Childers personally? That is cool that you got to see it with him, I hope he was pleased with the movie. Glad to hear the violence/sex scene isn’t gratuitous and overly done… I can’t wait to see this.

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