I Still Believe
A music biopic based on the experiences of singer Jeremy Camp, I Still Believe is a love story infused with Christian beliefs that’s designed to inspire and instil hope. The film is sentimental from the get-go, when Jeremy (KJ Apa) is shown at his family home packing his bags as he prepares to leave for college. His parents (Gary Sinise and Shania Twain) are very kind and supportive, and his siblings are sorry to see him go.
The first thing the protagonist does on arriving at college is introduce himself to his idol, Jean-Luc (Nathan Parsons), who plays regular gigs there. They immediately become friends, and Jeremy is encouraged to follow his nascent passion for music, falling in love with fellow student Melissa (Britt Robertson) along the way. Their sweet exchanges are just about to bloom into a relationship when some tragic news changes their fates forever and forces them to face life in a new way: they must redefine what faith means to them.
The love-conquers-all outlook makes the film border on mawkishness, but the fact that the action is based on real-life events redeems it to an extent. In any case, the tearjerker factor will likely appeal to romance fans, who will find echoes of The Notebook. The focus on religious faith somewhat obfuscates the narrative and airbrushes out the shades of grey that make a movie three-dimensional. For instance, there are no evil, or even remotely misguided, characters; everyone has an impeccable moral compass and behaves in an exemplary way. The single relational conflict that arises is resolved swiftly, making uncontrollable external agents the only threat in sight.
Mostly melodramatic, I Still Believe is unlikely to win converts, but it will be heartwarming viewing for its intended audience.
I Still Believe is released digitally on demand on 12th February 2021.
Watch the trailer for I Still Believe here: