Father Stu Review: A Faith-Based Movie About Redemption

Credit: Sony Pictures

When I watched Father Stu, I had no idea it was going to be a faith-based movie. After the end credits rolled, all doubt has been removed. Based on a true story, Mark Wahlberg portrays Father Stuart “Stu” Long, a boxer who moved to Los Angeles in the hopes of becoming a movie star. After a series of unfortunate events, Stu’s life gets turned upside down, and he devotes his life to becoming a Catholic priest. Father Stu won’t be for everyone, but it was still inspirational seeing Stu go through obstacles in the hopes of becoming part of the Catholic church.

The first half of the film focuses on Stu as he begins his journey as an aspiring actor who falls for a Catholic woman. During this time, he worked odd jobs and tries to court Carmen, played by Teresa Ruiz (Narcos: Mexico). He finally gets her attention, but if he wants to continue the relationship, he would have to become Catholic.

A New Lease on Life

An accident on Stu’s motorcycle will lead him to rethink his life. As a result, this is where the film starts to live up to the title. The journey is an interesting one where his persistence shines as many will try to stop him from becoming a priest. It’s a biopic, so the story is pretty straightforward. The issue is that it takes its time with his transition from his hometown to Los Angeles, his pursuit of Carmen, his transition from Athiest to Catholic, and side gigs. If the film had spent more time on his priesthood, it would have been a better payoff to see how much more of an impact he had on the community.

Mark Wahlberg does a solid job as Stu, showing the character’s determination and tough exterior. Ruiz plays the Mel Gibson plays Stu’s father, who’s been absent from his life. It was hard not to picture the parallels between the character and the actor as they both try to seek redemption. There’s definitely a message in the film about helping others and striving to do better despite having troubled pasts.

Father Stu Final Reaction

Father Stu is rough around the edges, just like the person it’s trying to capture. It’s a touching faith-based film of redemption and determination, even when it takes some time to get there. Mark Wahlberg brings an emotional performance filled with hope and inspiration in the second half.

Rating: 3.5/5 Atoms

Facebook Comments