There's a shot early in the new Left Behind film—the third in the series—of a Time-styled news magazine laying on a desk. It's called Today Weekly. I had to chuckle at this self-contradicting name, but the problem is I can't figure out if I was supposed to laugh. I don't know if Today Weekly is an intentional clever joke or an unintentionally humorous goofball moment. Such confusion typifies this film, which has several touches of both cleverness and cheese.
The mere existence of cheese in a Left Behind film comes as no surprise to some movie fans. However, excluding a few goofy moments, Left Behind: World at War plays out as an average TV drama. Many times, I caught myself thinking of it as 24—with less action and more prayer time. There's impressive acting, some intrigue, mostly decent special effects, and good themes for Christian discussion.
In this episode of the Left Behind saga (based on the last 50 pages of the second book), the Antichrist, Nicholae Carpathia (Gordon Currie), has united the world's 172 countries into a Global Community (or GC) that is ridding the planet of dangerous weapons by just asking all the governments to give them up. The only wrenches in the machine are a mysterious militia and an organized movement of Christians who are both sabotaging the GC's efforts. "The militia thinks I'm big brother and the Christians think I'm Satan," Carpathia laments. "Dissenters sow doubt—the militia does it with fear and the Christians want blind faith."
As the film begins, U.S. President Fitzhugh (Louis Gossett Jr.) is tired of these rebels "who can't stand peace." A loyal supporter of Carpathia, the prez is frustrated that weapons keep disappearing from U.S. stockpiles before they can be ...1