Saved! 2004 Movie Scene Mandy Moore as Hilary holding a bible and talking to Jena Malone as Mary

Saved! [2004]

Saved! is a lighthearted comedy exploring some pretty important issues. Exactly this approach gives it a different feel than all other movies about this subject. We focus on the characters and their lives instead of some preachy narrative. The narrative that’s nor here nor there, meaning we will hear out both sides. Which is only fair, at least in my opinion. Speaking of which, I must also say that as an atheist myself I strongly believe in this exploration without judgment. The world itself is responsible for that.

Although Saved! follows a group of teenagers, it’s not just a movie for them. Hell, I’m not a teenager and I really liked it. The script is well-written and intelligent, not taking any cheap shots but just dealing with the realities of life itself. And certain views, of course. Our young cast did a terrific job with good-girl Mandy Moore stealing the show. Jena Malone and Macaulay Culkin also gave pretty good performances.

Mary is a lucky devout Christian girl because she has a devout Christian boyfriend Dean. They are attending their Christian school and socializing with their Christian friends (I guess this is hell). But her perfect world will be rocked when she finds out that her boyfriend might be gay. She hopes that sex will cure that, so she sleeps with him to convert him back to girls.

Now, I had to stop here because if I tell you more about the plot of Saved! you might have an emotional reaction. And I would rather prefer it if you had it while you’re watching the movie. However, overall, this is a very safe movie that cleverly avoids any controversy. It’s definitely a coming-of-age movie following a group of diverse friends getting ready to start “the real life” after spending much of their life in a Christian cocoon.

If you’re looking for something heavier you’ll have to check out The Invention of Lying or even Religulous. And if you want some really edgy and incredibly hilarious religious satire, there’s only one movie you should watch. And that’s Life of Brian.

Director: Brian Dannelly

Writers: Brian Dannelly, Michael Urban

Cast: Jena Malone, Mandy Moore, Macaulay Culkin, Patrick Fugit, Heather Matarazzo, Eva Amurri Martino

Fun Facts: Several groups that were supposed to be involved in the production quit because they didn’t like how the movie portrayed religion.


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