The Yahoo critics—typically more impressed by the dark and bizarre than by potent goodness—stroked their chins and gave the movie a “C+.” But the rest of viewers presented The Blind Side with an unequivocal “A”, and have helped generate more than $150 million in ticket sales already. Whether or not the masses are always correct, the voice of ordinary people was right on target with this one.
The Blind Side tells the real-life story of Michael Oher, a homeless African-American boy from a broken home. Michael is taken in by a wealthy white couple, the Touhys. The family offers Michael a welcoming love he’s never tasted before and seeks to help him reach the potential they see in him. The remarkable relationship that forms, however, isn’t just transformative for Michael. Just as I see again and again in people who’ve chosen to adopt, foster or engage global orphan care, the Touhys find themselves deeply changed by all that transpires as well. In this, The Blind Side is not just a heartwarming story. It’s a call to see the countless opportunities to “defend the cause of the fatherless” around us every day…and to seize them. Even better, the film offers an alluring taste of goodness, temping us not toward yet another experience of self-gratification, but toward the deeper joy to be found in opening our lives and homes in radical ways—even amidst the sacrifices and struggles the inevitably come with such choices.
If you haven’t seen it already, and perhaps even if you have, grab a group, friend or that special someone and catch The Blind Side this weekend. It’s the kind of film that won’t leave you quite the same. And in the process, you’ll be casting the one vote Hollywood values—ticket sales—for the kind of film we want to see more of.