SAN ANTONIO, Texas (WordNews.org) Feb. 29, 2012 – The night before the Oscars, directors Colin Gunn and Joaquin Fernandez and co-producer Scott Eash went home with an award of their own: the Jubilee Award for Best Documentary.
Their film: “IndoctriNation: Public Schools and the Decline of Christianity in America.”
More than 2,100 people attended the seventh annual San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival, considered one of the highest honors in Christian film making.
“Courageous,” a box office success, took the $101,000 Best of Festival Award. “Courageous” focused on four police officers who struggled with issues of fatherhood. [See related story: "God is intervening," 'Courageous' star Bevel says]
“Courageous” is the fourth feature film produced by Sherwood Pictures and the Kendrick brothers. This cash prize is the largest to be given to an individual filmmaker by an independent film festival in America.
“Courageous” is arguably the most successful independent Christian film with a distinctively Evangelical worldview in the history of the cinema,” said Doug Phillips, president and founder of the SAICFF. “With the DVD hitting No. 1 in sales its first week of release, more than 34 million in box office receipts, and wildly enthusiastic audiences, the Kendrick brothers have made their mark in history and proven to the world that Christian filmmaking has come of age.”
“IndoctriNation’ features the emotional testimony of Brian Rohrbough who lost his son during the Columbine High School massacre in 1999.
“It may have taken a school shooting to wake us up, to see the danger,” Rohrbough says in the film, “but that’s a very small danger compared to all the other things that go on that can destroy our children.”
Less than 36 hours after the film festival’s closing ceremony, another tragic school shooting occurred. Thomas “TJ” Lane, a sophomore at Chardon High School, began a shooting rampage in the school cafeteria during breakfast on Monday, February 27. Of the five students who were shot, three have now died.
“Chardon and Columbine are not isolated incidents,” said Gunn. “During the research for our documentary, we discovered, to our horror, that 400 people have been victims of government school related violence since Columbine. But what a lot of Christian parents fail to realize is that their children are not only in danger physically, but they are in danger academically, morally and spiritually as well.”
The filmmakers said that while there are numerous Christian schools in the country and homeschooling is growing in popularity, “the vast majority of Christian children still attend a public school.”
The tragedy is that Christian parents still deceive themselves into thinking that these things can’t happen to their child, yet every week we hear of another violent act or sexual assault in the public schools,” Gunn said.
Gunn, a Scottish filmmaker and home school father of eight who lives in Waco, Texas, drove a yellow school bus with his family across America, asking questions about the origins and social impact of America’s public education system.
“IndoctriNation” features interviews with teachers including the legendary New York City and State Teacher of the Year John Taylor Gatto as well as public school administrators, students and parents.
Find more information about the “IndoctriNation” film at www.IndoctrinationMovie.com.