Machine Gun Preacher (2011)

Action, Biography, Crime, Drama
Gerard Butler, Michelle Monaghan, Michael Shannon, Kathy Baker
Sam Childers is a former drug-dealing biker tough guy who found God and became a crusader for hundreds of Sudanese children who've been forced to become soldiers.
There's a complex man at the center of Machine Gun Preacher but the movie is too shapeless and emotionally vacant to bring his story to life.
  • Relativity Media Company:
  • R Rated:
  • IMDB link IMDB:
  • 02 Nov 2011 Released:
  • 05 Jun 2012 DVD Release:
  • $0.5M Box office:

Trailer:

Heart Wrenching and Poignant10/10
I saw a screening last night at the DGA, and wasn't prepared for what I was about to witness. I was in tears several times during the film. It was something that will stick with me forever. I think the fact that this was a true story made it even more powerful.

The whole cast was really wonderful, but Michelle Monaghan stands out in my mind. That girl is a true talent, and hearing her speak after the movie made me realize how invested she is, not only in the film part of the project, but in the charity with Sam Childers as well. Such impressive work, both in front of and behind the camera.

The movie made me want to help. It made me angry that our military, government, and governments across the planet have neglected these people.

I am still reeling from seeing this. Brilliant, moving, and absolutely gut wrenching.

Did someone say Oscar?
WOAH! Incredible in every manner10/10
This film deserves a MUCH higher score. It's one of the best movies I've seen in years.

Very well developed characters and storyline and amazing acting/plot.

I was a little upset in the beginning and thought the movie will turn out to be cheesy, but it really takes hold on you after a few initial disappointments and doesn't let go until the end.

Buttler fits the unstable "born again, dead again" character extremely well and delivers an extremely believable performance.

What really makes this movie stand out is its non-stop change of pace. It goes from slow and peaceful to hardcore Rambo action, but does so in a very creative way.

Definitely a must see and definitely a masterpiece!
Had to travel to Denver to see it, but it was worth it.10/10
The interesting observation after viewing this film at the historic Mayan Theater in downtown Denver was that every female was crying by the end and the men were poker-faced. Also of interest is that the negative reviews, which are often unnecessarily unkind to Gerard Butler, and unhelpful to the reader, often seem to have been posted by males. Sure, women around the world are crazy about Gerard Butler, but come on, this was an astounding performance about the life of an awe-inspiring man. If you didn't like the film, walked out, or wanted to punch Mr. Butler in the face, then donate the cost of your ticket to Angels of East Africa. My final comment is that Mr. Butler produced this film because it wouldn't have been made otherwise. This is a story that had to be told and he didn't accept his normal fee for his performance; in fact, although I obviously can't confirm it, I heard that he accepted a fraction of a fraction of his normal fee.
Powerful, graphic, unsettling movie with a profound message of hope and human courage shown in adversity5/10
I went into this movie with no expectations. The title made it seem like it would be a typical action movie; all guns and brawn and little in the way of storyline but boy was I wrong. This movie, based on a true story, was powerful and touched me so much that it has prompted me to write my first film review on IMDb in over six years! This is a movie with a solid pedigree of cast behind it, it is based on the life of Sam Childers (Gerard Butler), who without giving much away, has a criminal past, finds God and embarks on undertaking missionary work in civil war-torn Sudan, leaving his loyal, loving wife Lynn Childers (Michelle Monaghan) and his young daughter Paige (Madeline Carrol) back home in Penslyvania. This movie follows Sam's juggling how his Christian faith inspires him at home and also in Sudan.

Gerard Butler has always been something of an enigma to me. In my opinion he can be hit and miss as an actor, but in this movie he gives a powerhouse performance as the emotionally conflicted and stunted Sam Cilders, someone who follows his faith and shows simple, sometimes primal humanity in inhumane foreign environments. I think this is Gerard Butlers best performance to date, he expertly immerses himself into Sam , he is so believable in this role, both emotionally, mentally and physically. The audience may find it hard to remember it is just a movie at some stages. Michael Shannon is amazing a Sam's childhood friend Donnie, a troubled soul who is another person loyal to Sam but ultimately flawed.

This is not a movie I feel will get the awards it richly deserves. Similar in tone to Hotel Rwanda, it is an inspiring story but with a sobering message. It reminded me a lot of Hotel Rwanda because it showed how one man alone with enough faith in simple humanity can make a difference. Sam Childers is not a saint; far from it, he is flawed and he has a violent and criminal side and this is evident in the movie. However he is also shown as having humanity and the fact that he decides to make a stand and do something away from the comfort of his armchair in America is testament to his character. Would the audience have the courage to do what Sam did? That is a question facing the audience as they leave the movie, along with the graphic images which will haunt the audience for a long time after seeing the movie.

There are so many powerful moments in this movie that it is hard to pin point any without spoiling the plot. This is not a movie that you should take a date along to; or anyone who is squeamish or unsettled by blood and guts. This is a movie that takes the audience in the palm of their hands and opens their eyes to the blunt reality and the truth of genocide. It is similar in that way to Hotel Rwanda but I found this movie even more graphic and unsettling in many ways. This is a movie you should watch at all costs although you may not want to see it again. It is hard hitting, powerful, emotional but most of all thought provoking.
An amazing story.. An amazing movie!!!10/10
I saw this movie and was simply left speechless. It was amazing!! The story of Sam Childers is amazing. It really makes you think and wonder how can one person have so much willpower and stamina to keep doing what he has been doing all these years for these children. I was shocked by what the LRA has been doing to these children but unfortunately this is the truth and history keeps repeating itself especially in African countries. I have lived in Africa for many years and seeing somebody doing something about these atrocities does mean a lot (even though he is a "white savior"). If this is what it takes, so be it. Let's not denigrate it as I have seen so many do in their reviews. It is a very moving story and although it is extremely violent at times (let us not forget this is a true story and these things happened), it can be very touching and emotional. Gerard Butler's performance is Oscar worthy and Michelle Monaghan and Michael Shannon were also great even though their roles were short but then again the story is about Sam Childers. However, what I would really like to know is why some of the critics trashed this movie?? !! Most of the people who saw it found it excellent as I did. And why was it not widely distributed??? I think people should see this movie and be more awake and aware!! Was it too controversial for some?? It leaves me wondering !!!