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Top 100 Best Selling Christian Films of 2016

 

#1            #2

The number one bestselling movie of 2016 is a Revolutionary Era adventure from the Burns cousins. Beyond the Mask – last year’s third film – is a film that would help families discuss faith after watching an exciting film. With help from Stephen Kendrick, Producer Aaron Burns and his cousin, Chad, wrote them into a story about Will Reynolds, the former leading mercenary for the British East India Company. On the run in the American Colonies from the nefarious Charles Kemp (John Rhys-Davies), Reynolds works to redeem his name and win back the affections of the woman with whom he’s never been fully truthful. Will hides behind a new mask in hopes of thwarting his former employer, but discovers that wearing the mask physically or emotionally can’t save him from a life of despair – only the grace of God can do that. At the ICVM Awards, Beyond the Mask won the Silver Award for Best Picture, Best Youth Film, and the Bronze Award for Best Evangelistic Film.

#3           #4

Bobby Downes, President and Co-founder of ChristianCinema.com, said, “Like many of the films on our list, Alone Yet Not Alone aims to tell a genuine story with real faith. This is an opportunity to see how real people lived out their faith through adversity.”

Holding strong in the number two slot, another historical drama, Alone Yet Not Alone debuted in theaters in 2013, but an Academy Awards controversy surrounding Joni Eareckson Tada’s theme song of the same name – drove buzz about the film. Recounting the real-life adventures of the Leininger family, German immigrants who settled in Pennsylvania, the film highlights the story of Barbara and Regina who were kidnapped by Delaware Indians during the French and Indian War in the 1755 Penn’s Creek Massacre. While the box office draw was just shy of a million dollars, the home release sales in 2015 proved that this period piece had plenty to share about what it means to rely on God even in the hardest circumstances. Two other true stories join it in the Top 10, as Just Let Go (#4) and Different Drummers(#6, up twenty spots from 2015) recount stories of people who overcame personal tragedy and hardship to thrive through their faith.

With Just Let Go, audiences see the inspirational true story of Chris Williams. On a cold February night in 2007, a devoted father of four and a seventeen-year-old drunk driver both received life sentences. In one violent, devastating instant, each faced a drastically different and uncertain future. But as Chris Williams sat in his demolished vehicle, staring at the car that had just caused the death of his wife, his unborn baby, his nine-year-old daughter, and his eleven-year-old son, he committed to do something extraordinary: he would forgive.

 

#5           #6

Set in suburban America in 1965, Different Drummers is based on a true story of friendship and adventure, that will forever change the lives of two unique boys. A deeply inspirational and transcendent family film, the audience observes the unusual spiritual journey and unlikely friendship of two boys growing up in Spokane, Washington in the mid 1960s. Eleven-year-old David, wheelchair-bound by muscular dystrophy, is growing progressively weaker, while his ten-year-old friend, Lyle, has a problem with an increasingly high energy level. When their teacher dies, a doubtful and confused Lyle feels he must find out for certain if God exists. Inspired by his TV idol, Jack LaLanne, Lyle convinces David that he can teach him to run, secretly viewing this as a way to test the existence of God.

“Christian films continue to improve in quality, with storytelling, casting, and production all rising,” said ChristianCinema.com Vice President Jared Geesey. “We couldn’t be happier for their success and the impact on lives that we are seeing!”

Moving up one spot from 2015, the third bestselling film of the year is Do You Believe, which is also #22 on all-time Christian box office. Featuring theology from James 2:17, a pastor’s encounter with a street evangelist shakes up the lives of twelve people connected through an area hospital. Headlined by Mira Sorvino, Sean Astin, Lee Majors, Cybil Shepherd, Delroy Lindo, and Brian Bosworth, the film highlights a Crash-like interweaving of stories that has appealed to Christian audiences in the theater and at home.

Newcomer Love Different –from writer, director, and star Anthony Hackett – debuts in the eighth spot. An African American co-worker, Neque Campbell (Anthony Hackett), is given the task to help Lindsay Walker (Jenn Gotzon) get acquainted with the African American culture to better serve at an African American consulting firm. Lindsay has forty-eight hours to learn about the African American culture in order for her not to lose her job. Through their hilarious and eye-opening journey together, they both come to understand even more than they signed up for. Love Different was the first comedy to reach #1 on Christian Cinema’s digital bestselling list and served as the featured movie at the 2016 AMTC Shine Conference.

Other notable films in the 2016 top 100 of Christian Cinema list include:

From the creators of the highly acclaimed motion picture King’s Faith (#16, up from #48 in 2015) comes #11, Wildflower, a powerful film that reveals how hope can be found even in life’s darkest moments. Creatively gifted college student Chloe Moray (Nathalia Ramos) finds solace from a difficult childhood in her art. But when a terrifying dream begins to recur night after night, Chloe starts to believe that it might be a suppressed memory and that she may have witnessed a terrible crime as a little girl. Her search to find answers sends her on a journey that forces Chloe to confront her own past traumas and leads her to cross paths with Josh (Cody Longo, Not Today), a young man dealing with his own personal trauma. Together they find the key to unlocking a decade-old cold case. But when the authorities don’t believe them, Chloe’s new-found hope is challenged in this extraordinary story of faith, triumph and healing.

At #14, Princess Cut moved up from 43 to share its story of how a struggling farmer helps his headstrong daughter discover the power of love in their rural Carolina town. A lifelong Carolina farm girl, now in her early twenties, Grace (Ashley Bratcher) has dreamed all her life of the day when “Mr. Right” slips a Princess Cut diamond on her finger and swears to love her forever. Tonight may be that night as Stewart has something special planned after fifteen months together! But when things don’t go as planned, and romance crashes down around her, it launches her on a quest, aided by her father, to understand what it means to truly love another person. Will Grace finally discover love or ruin her chances for happiness forever?

Two films about Corrie ten Boom held steady in the top 100, with #15 Return to the Hiding Place (#5 in 2015) and The Hiding Place (#67). Recounting how ten Boom fought the rising Nazi empire in Holland by safely shepherding Jews to freedom, the films show her bravery and the courage of those teenagers who assisted her, including Piet Hartog and Aty van Woerden.

The most controversial film of 2016 to some, The Principle features narration by Kate Mulgrew, stunning animations by BUF Compagnie Paris, and commentary from prominent scientists including George Ellis, Michio Kaku, Julian Barbour, Lawrence Krauss, and Max Tegmark. Tracing the development of cosmology from its inception (Stonehenge, the Great Pyramid at Giza), through the great revolution of Copernicus, to the astonishing new discoveries of Earth-oriented alignments in the largest structures of our visible universe, the film leads us to ask, what does this mean for the future of mankind? and arrived at #54.

Out of great personal tragedy, a female comedian shared what she had learned about faith and life in Chonda Pierce: Laughing in the Dark in 2016’s sixty-third bestseller. Revealing a path to hope and healing for all those who are suffering from depression, anxiety, loss and grief. An intimate look into the life of America’s #1 female comedian (RIAA certified 5 Platinum, 8 Gold DVDs), the docu-comedy follows Pierce as she struggles with loss, separation, tragedy and depression and finds hope and life through her relationship with God and her fans. The film mirrors her concerts as she takes the audience on an emotional roller-coaster ride descending to the depths of dark despair and rising to the heights of victory propelled by laughter, perseverance, and faith.

At #74, Providence tells the story of Rachel and Mitchell, who both grow up in the small town of Providence, Tennessee. Their paths keep crossing and at one point it looks like they’ll finally get together. But the opportunity slips away and they go their separate ways. It takes a tragedy many years later before they’re reunited. This time will they let the moment pass or will they take a step of faith and trust God to work a miracle in their lives? This beautiful redemptive romance is portrayed with no dialogue, using dramatic action, breathtaking cinematography, and an incredible soundtrack of indie music to tell this lovely story of a love worth waiting for. Winner of the Crown Awards Gold Winner for Best Drama Under $250,000 (as well as Bronze for Best Picture, Silver for Best Evangelistic, and Bronze for Best Youth), Providence also achieved recognition at the GloryReelz Christian Film Festival, CTN’s Faith Film Festival, Bare Bones International Film and Music Festival, and the International Christian Film Festival.

One of the most “fantastic” films of 2016, Masterless comes in at #84. A powerful double-edged tale of real life and the spiritual plane, the story shares how Kane Madison is an architect working in Los Angeles, while his doppelganger-like spirit, an eighteenth century Ronin, wanders a parallel netherworld of masked demons and Japanese swordsmen. When tragedy strikes, Kane embarks on a journey of faith which prompts the Ronin to seek out his true master in the spirit world… both will face many battles along their interweaving roads to peace.

About Francis Arihilam

Francis Arihilam lives everyday to see potential maximize. He teaches people how to lead productive lives. His focus is to help people maximize their innate potential and help individuals make right relationship decisions. He does this via speaking and writing.

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