Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Jeremiah
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on August 14, 2010
This film demonstrates the tremendous power movies have to inspire and instruct. The production team of Jeremiah did an excellent job of taking a 52 chapter book of the Bible and condensing it accurately to film. The dialogue is Scriptural, creative, and inspiring. The acting is superb. The sets, costumes, and effects are all realistic. But what sets this film apart from other Biblical stories on film is that while some liberties were taken with characters and dialogue, they were both believable and in-line with Scripture. One example ? The character of "Judith". Basically, this young woman is the wife-to-be of Jeremiah. They have a tender relationship, share some adventures together, but never marry. Why ? In the book of Jeremiah, God tells him that he will never marry because of the terrible wrath and destruction the Babylonian armies will bring upon Israel. In creating this character, the writers make the audience feel the pain and devastation such an unction from God would bring--far more than if he had no romantic ties whatsoever. But Judith represents even more. In creating this character, the writers brought to life a living metaphor for all good and lovely things God wanted to give His people to enjoy in their lives--had they been faithful to His commandments. Without this faithfulness to God, He could not bless them with all the good things He loves to bring upon His people. This is just one example of a 'liberty' the writers took that, contrary to most uses of this, greatly enhanced the characters and enriched the story. A definite "must see", for both Jew and Gentile.
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This film is an excellent telling of Jeremiah's life, and although time has been compressed, and some fictitious characters added to fill out the scenario, the heart of this part of biblical history is intact, and follows the accounts given in The Book of Jeremiah, II Kings 23-25, and II Chronicles 34-36.
Some of the additions: The lovely "Judith" (Lenor Varela) as an early love interest, and "General Safan", played by that lionesque man, Oliver Reed, as one of Jeremiah's adversaries, and someone who consistently gives bad advice to the king.
Among the omissions: Jeremiah's good years, when he was a friend and confidant to the devout King Josiah, which ended in 609 B.C. with the Josiah's death.
Jeremiah was older when most of the events that take place in this film occur, and had been ministering since 627 B.C.
The film starts with the finding the scriptures, which King Josiah reads to the people, and a young Jeremiah, "I cannot speak, for I am only a youth" (Jer. 1:6).
Sixteen years elapse, and in some of the following scenes, Jehoiakim (Josiah's son) is king, and the constant and brutal persecution of Jeremiah begins.
Patrick Dempsey is wonderful as Jeremiah, and also Stuart Bunce as his faithful scribe Baruch (it is Baruch who in all probability recorded The Book of Jeremiah).
Enter Nebuchadnezzar, played with gusto by Klaus Maria Brandauer. This is one nasty guy, but he is the instrument to complete Jeremiah's prophesies, with his armies sacking and burning the temple (in 586 B.C.) and the ensuing famine in the land. Nebuchadnezzar takes Jehoiakim's son and succesor Jehoiachin captive, and and places his uncle Zedekiah (formerly known as Mattaniah) as king.
The final 10 minutes of this film are riveting, with King Zedekiah's fate brilliantly depicted (literaly taken from II Kings 25:7), and Jeremiah's story, though a sad one, is one of faith and perseverance, and well worth watching.
Most of the films in this series are terrific, and have beautiful cinematography by Raffaele Mertes; they are set in Quarzazate, Morocco, with its rugged landscape and ancient structures. A good score by Bruce Broughton adds to the atmosphere, and it's well directed and written (with a fair portion taken from the scriptures) by Harry Winer.
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on August 12, 2001
This film demonstrates the tremendous power movies have to inspire and instruct. The production team of Jeremiah did an excellent job of taking a 52 chapter book of the Bible and condensing it accurately to film. The dialogue is Scriptural, creative, and inspiring. The acting is superb. The sets, costumes, and effects are all realistic. But what sets this film apart from other Biblical stories on film is that while some liberties were taken with characters and dialogue, they were both believable and in-line with Scripture. One example ? The character of "Judith". Basically, this young woman is the wife-to-be of Jeremiah. They have a tender relationship, share some adventures together, but never marry. Why ? In the book of Jeremiah, God tells him that he will never marry because of the terrible wrath and destruction the Babylonian armies will bring upon Israel. In creating this character, the writers make the audience feel the pain and devastation such an unction from God would bring--far more than if he had no romantic ties whatsoever. But Judith represents even more. In creating this character, the writers brought to life a living metaphor for all good and lovely things God wanted to give His people to enjoy in their lives--had they been faithful to His commandments. Without this faithfulness to God, He could not bless them with all the good things He loves to bring upon His people. This is just one example of a 'liberty' the writers took that, contrary to most uses of this, greatly enhanced the characters and enriched the story. A definite "must see", for both Jew and Gentile.
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on April 12, 2002
I was not aware that Bible stories were being revisited by movie studios anymore. From the previews of this video, I see that Trimark has made movies of Genesis, Esther, Solomon, Jeremiah, and Jesus. These are all part of a series.
If the other films are like this one, there is a bit of creative license. The book in the Bible deals more with the prophecies from God that Jeremiah told the people of Israel. We get very little about the man. In the movie, however, the writers have given him more of a background. They also provide him with a love interest, and we also see some of his childhood. He also has a couple of helpers including a scribe and a eunuch.
Although I would rather they keep to the Bible, I don't think this background hurts the film. Not every statement from the book of Jeremiah is listed in the movie, but this movie is enjoyable without taking away from the prophet. I would simply remind myself that not all of this is found in the Bible.
I would recommend this movie.
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on November 11, 2010
I did enjoy this movie. Mostly, it was reasonably well depicted. It irritated me that the angles were shown to be a little girl and an old man. Angels are powerful spirit creatures who do the bidding of our Creator. In another Bible account One Angel killed 185,000 Assyrian soldiers! That does not sound like the work of a child or old man. Also, the King would have never been in the "Inner Courtyard" of the Temple; only the priests were to be there. Moreover, the curtain to the Most Holy was a Thick barrier...not a flimsy fabric.Too, Jeremiah was put in stocks, not hung in a cage. Inaccuracies such as these always detract from the enjoyment of a movie for me.The visuals are helpful,however. Yet, if I am going to imprint something onto my mind I would rather it be true than Hollywood.
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on February 4, 2001
Of 'The Bible' series by Lube Productions, this has to be one of their finest. The scene where Jeremiah, who at the start of his priestly ministry, prophesied to the assembled worshippers and the dissolute King was one of the most profound I have seen. Patrick Dempsey is well cast for his role as the unflinching prophet who contends with spirital apostasy, political intrigue and the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. (One can only speculate, but I would dearly like to see a film made by Lube about Elijah!). This film is a worthy addition to the video library of anyone who likes Biblical dramas. Care and attention was paid to historical and Biblical accuracy, without the sleaze and 'extra-curricular' activities indulged by many earlier films about the Bible.
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on December 13, 2001
If you know the book of Jeremiah from the Bible you will quickly see how few of Jeremiah's words are actually used in the film - BUT - make no mistake, the mood of this picture succeeds in portraying the tension within Jeremiah as he begins his prophetic career.
His unwilling initiation is quite scriptural and you really sense the power of the counter culture which he has to battle against. Nevertheless, as he embraces his calling his influence, through God's direction, begins to hit home and you experience his turmoil as not only he suffers, but the cities of Judah suffer as they reject Jeremiah's word to them.
This film is gripping and highly motivating for the believer - will you and I follow as hard after God and His will and, like Jeremiah, be willing to lay everything down for God's call on our lives?
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on September 20, 2010
This is another fabulous movie. I did not know about the book of Jeremiah. The scenery is marvelous. I am grateful for the people that made Bible books clear by acting the parts. Several times I tried to understand, and visualize while reading from the Bible. Due to terms that I am not familiar with, I would loose any message that was being communicated. This movie brings the message clearly.
At times during my life I encounter obstacles as Jeremiah did. Watching how Jeremiah decided, and acted on his decisions is what life is about. Of course too the scenery, and the performers are spectacular.
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on December 16, 2005
Patrick Dempsey turns in a perfect performance as the title character in JEREMIAH. He plays a humble prophet of God among the rebellious Israelites, as they are being taken over by Babylon, as punishment for turning away from God and living as they each saw fit, NOT as God had commanded them to live!

Jeremiah is chosen as a child to be the Lord's Prophet. He is disowned by his family and his countrymen for proclaiming what God tells him to say to the Israelites, but they can't silence Jeremiah because everything God tells him to say comes true!

The scribe named Baruch is his only friend during his persecuted mission. (BTW: in the Apocraphy Books of the Bible, Baruch has HIS own book named after Baruch).

Jeremiah's message is basically that the Israelites have sinned greatly and constantly against God, they have rejected repeated warnings from God's Prophets, and as punishment they are going to be exiled to Babylon, losing their own nation, except for a tiny remnant of impoverished citizens who are too lowly for even the Babylonian captors to want to bother kidnapping and taking back to Babylon.

Jeremiah is one of the longer books of the Bible, in the category of Major Prophets. The Bible covers a much longer stretch of Jeremiah's life, from childhood until old age. This film condenses the major points of the Bible book into his childhood and up until around age 30-ish. They hit all the themes of the Bible book, but have compacted the jist of the Scriptures about Jeremiah into a compact film of about 90 minutes.

The main difference from Scripture is in that this film adds a fictional character, a girlfriend, who is NOT in the Bible; but they use her character to explain the plight of the Jews in that day, while the shadow of Babylon approaches. The Bible DOES say that Jeremiah shall not marry and have a family, and this movie does not contradict that Scripture! The actress playing the girlfriend does a good job, and she's not in the film much, so I can easily forgive the filmmakers for adding her.

This movie is also sold in a pack, THE BIBLE SERIES BOX SET, (which also includes the equally good DVD movies of ESTHER and SOLOMON). Search for it on amazon.com. It is about 50% cheaper to buy all three movies at once, for less than $10 per disk, than to buy them separately. All three films are of high quality!

JEREMIAH is my favorite film of the LUBE Productions series of made-for-TV Bible movies from the mid 1990's. The rest of the DVD movies have finally been released on DVD in 2005. Search amazon.com for the BIBLE COLLECTION BOX SET (ABRAHAM, JACOB, JOSEPH, MOSES, SAMSON & DELILAH, and DAVID), which will also save you about 50% off compared to buying all 6 of those separately!
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on October 21, 2000
Well done. Inspiring. Sobering. 'Jeremiah' does an excellent job at givng us a glimpse into what life for Jeremiah must have been like after God called him to be His prophet. This is not a cheesy attempt to put the Scriptures on film, but a professionally-done rendering of a complex Biblical character with a most difficult assignment from God. I highly recommend this film to everyone!
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