During its opening weekend, “Jesus Revolution”, a Christian-themed comedy-drama featuring Kelsey Grammer, surpassed Hollywood’s expectations, earning more than double the estimated box office revenue.
The movie, released by Lionsgate, ranked third with a weekend gross of $15.9 million. Industry analysts had projected earnings of $6-7 million for its debut.
The film’s popularity was boosted by favorable word-of-mouth reviews, with audiences awarding it an A+ Cinemascore rating. Even some mainstream critics were won over by the movie’s heartwarming storyline and surprising comedic elements.
“Jon Erwin has now achieved four A+ CinemaScores, more than any other filmmaker since we have been compiling data. For a director to achieve that accomplishment once is a rarity. But to hit that mark four times is not only an incredible distinction – it’s unprecedented,” CinemaScore President Harold Mintz told Collider.
One audience member said that while many Christian-centric movies do not appeal to many Americans everyone should find the film enjoyable as a piece of American history.
“Well done! An inspiring, encouraging story that was honestly and transparently told!” audience member Patrice H said.
Viewer Aimee also left an extremely positive review, writing “I loved it. I cried and laughed. I felt overwhelmed with Joy. It was clean and wholesome.”
The movie opened on the heels of one of the largest Christian revivals in recent years — the Asbury Revival, which saw an estimated 50,000 Gen Z’ers participate in song and prayer over a multi-week period at Asbury University in Kentucky.
Jesus Revolution tells the true story of Chuck Smith (Grammer), a traditional pastor who grudgingly welcomes hippies into his congregation at the height of the countercultural “Jesus movement” during the late 60s and early 70s. Smith’s path eventually intersects with the young future pastor Greg Laurie (Joel Courtney).
The movie was produced by the Kingdom Story Company, an independent studio that makes faith-based movies in partnership with Lionsgate. Jon Erwin, one of the co-founders of Kingdom, co-directed the movie with Brent McCorkle