Left Behind

Director:Vic Sarin
Writers:Allan McElroy, Paul Lalonde, Joe Goodman
Cloud 10 Pictures and Namesake Entertainment; NR; 95 minutes
Cast:Kirk Cameron, Brad Johnson, Janaya Stephens

Most bible-based films fall into one of two loose categories. The movies that strive to be epic about such important source material (The Ten Commandments, Prince of Egypt) and those content to saddle the sacred book with video-ready production values (1999's The Omega Code). Think of the difference between Gregorian chant voicing the sublime and Christian rock groups blaring out both volume and message. Left Behind falls into the latter category.

Perhaps bible-based is not the right description, as Left Behind derives not from the New Testament, but the best-selling thriller series about Jesus' Second Coming, written by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins. Left Behind refers to an event in the Book of Revelation, where all Christians ascend to heaven, leaving nonbelievers behind.

Kirk Cameron (from television's Growing Pains) stars as plucky GNN reporter Buck Williams. When the Christians suddenly vanish, worldwide chaos descends as those left behind try to sort it all out. In the resultant instability, a powerful Romanian leader (Gordon Currie) emerges with a UN mandate and a plan for world peace. The plot covers the first novel of a series with nine titles so far, and leaves plenty of space for a sequel.

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