The Shack plays like the book it was based on. For a faith-based film, it doesn’t feel like your usual brimstone and fire story. The approach they took on this film would make an agnostic feel the positive message. I do feel that some bible thumping believers may not like some of the positivity shown in this film cause it doesn’t show a heaven or hell. On the down side, I think Sam Worthington was missed cast as Mack, he should have been the good buddy and Tim McGraw should have played the lead character.
With that said, here’s a bit of the plot: The Shack takes us on a father’s uplifting spiritual journey. After suffering a family tragedy, Mack Phillips (Worthington) spirals into a deep depression causing him to question his innermost beliefs. Facing a crisis of faith, he receives a mysterious letter urging him to an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Despite his doubts, Mack journeys to the shack and encounters an enigmatic trio of strangers led by a woman named Papa (Octavia Spencer).
We had the opportunity to talk with the story author William P. Young. It was a lively and passionate talk with him. He talked about music and his next two books that will be films soon.
Octavia Spencer told us she would not have done the movie if she didn’t believe in the message it conveyed. The Academy award winner talked about how diversity in front and behind the camera, starts with films that are green-lit.
Radha Mitchell is Nan Phillips, Mack’s wife. She told us why she loves to mix up different film genres to work on. The Shack to her was about forgiveness and she realized that her character had a deeper connection than her husband character played by Worthington.
I always enjoy doing roundtables and this one was a really good one. Now you can listen in on the conversations.
Also starring in the film are Avraham Aviv Alush, Sumire Matsubara, Alice Braga, Graham Greene, Megan Charpentier, and the young Amélie Eve. Directed by Stuart Hazeldine.
The Shack, in theaters March 3. — A.O.