SynopsisBased on a true story that centers on 16-year-old Agnes “Apple” Bailey (Vanessa Hudgens), GIMME SHELTER uncovers the struggle for survival and the hope of redemption through the harsh realities of life on the streets. As a pregnant teenager, Apple’s journey plummets her into a perilous struggle until finding salvation in a suburban shelter for homeless teens. With provisions of unprecedented comfort, a collective sisterhood connection, and female empowerment, the shelter elevates Apple to break the shackles of her past and inspires her to embrace the future with clarity, maturity and hope not only for herself but her unborn child.
This is a powerful movie of a story that needs to be told. I viewed it on my laptop, but James and I will go see it on the big screen now that it released yesterday.
Because of the nature of the story, the beginning is graphic and rough, but I didn't find anything gratuitous in the opening. Everything was organic to the story. But because of the harsh reality of it, I wouldn't recommend it for small children.
Even with the realism of the storyline, the story carries a message of hope and redemption. I found the Christian message so skillfully woven into the story through the characters of the hospital chaplain and the woman who ran the shelter to be believable and healing. It wasn't just stuck into the story as some Hollywood so-called Christian films have been. And that is refreshing.
The movie was inspired by one of the Several Sources shelters for unwed mothers. The founder and director Kathy DiFore played the director and parts of the movie was filmed at one of the shelters, with Kathy in the part of the director and some of the actual residents and their babies were in the film. This added a special authenticity to the movie, especially for Vanessa Hudgens, who plays Apple. I've seen her interviewed, and she actually spent a few days living in the shelter.
Gimme Shelter showcases the amazing talents of the Hollywood cast as well. The broad range of emotions tugged at my heart and pulled me into the story.
I highly recommend this movie to Christians everywhere. It will open our eyes to places where we can help and encourage young women, stuck in an ugly situation, and show us how we can shares the hope from Jesus that they need to rise above their circumstances.
Copyright 2014, Lena Nelson Dooley