What started as a parenting resource will make its debut on the silver screen in May as FamilyLife launches its first full-length feature movie, Like Arrows.
The film will be shown as a two-day-only event on May 1 and 3 on more than 800 screens and in every state. To learn more about the movie, find out where it will be showing, and how to reserve tickets, go to LikeArrowsMovie.com.
The film centers on the joys and trials of parenting and the power of family to shape the next generation. More than just an entertaining movie, the goal of Like Arrows is to honestly show a couple journeying through every phase of parenting. The film opens with Alice telling her boyfriend Charlie she is pregnant. As they are married and begin growing their family, they face typical parenting struggles and become aware of their need to be intentional and to cling to God’s blueprints for marriage and family.
“The parenting journey is both incredibly challenging and incredibly rewarding at the same time,” says FamilyLife’s Bob Lepine, who served as one of the executive producers for the project. “We wanted to take viewers on what we hope will be a very relatable journey. And in the process, we hope they’ll be inspired to make their faith more core to how they function as a family. That’s the goal.”
The movie’s title, Like Arrows, is drawn from one of the most family-centered passages in Scripture, Psalm 127:3-5:
Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them!
This passage refers to the fact that children are not just a blessing, but a responsibility. Parents are to raise the children God has given them and launch them with aim into the world, “like arrows in the hands of a mighty warrior.”
The Art of Parenting®
Like Arrows is part of a special FamilyLife initiative to equip parents. A new video curriculum, FamilyLife’s The Art of Parenting®, will be released at the same time as the film. It is FamilyLife’s third major video release, after The Art of Marriage® and the men’s resource Stepping Up®.
But a feature-length movie wasn’t originally in the script. The goal was to create a continuing story that would unfold week to week as part of the new video curriculum.
As the storyline came together, Lepine and the FamilyLife team began to wonder what it would be like if the story was told in a single sitting. When all the elements were put together, it was clear the impact of the story was stronger when it was viewed as a whole.
The key was a good script and good directing. Alex and Stephen Kendrick (Facing the Giants, Fireproof, Courageous, War Room) recommended Kevin Peeples to serve as the film’s director. He also collaborated on the script with Alex Kendrick and Bob Lepine. By the time the script was completed, Alex agreed to be cast in a featured role in the movie. Like Arrows also features the capable acting of Alan Powell (The Song, Christmas in the Smokies) and newcomer Micah Lynn Hanson. Together, they take viewers through the 50-year parenting journey as the principle characters.
“Those who have seen a preview of the film have told us that two themes really stand out,” Lepine says. “The first is that successful parenting involves intentionality. Our characters learn that moms and dads can’t be passive as parents.
“The second theme that has resonated with audiences is that no matter what issues you face in raising your children, it’s never too late to change course and follow God’s design. To keep the gospel central to all we do as parents.”
Help and hope
The ultimate goal of the movie is not just to entertain or connect with viewers, but to point them to help and hope for their home and family. Both before and after the movie plays in theaters, audiences will be able to experience an exclusive feature about Like Arrows and parenting, featuring FamilyLife co-founders Dennis and Barbara Rainey, along with co-producers Lepine and the Kendrick brothers.
Dennis Rainey, co-founder of FamilyLife, would like the material to be available to parents everywhere and as soon as possible, since the need for help and hope is so great. “Our goal is to reach more than one million homes around the world over the next three years with practical, biblically anchored help for moms and dads as they raise the next generation.”