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The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry (2008)

Gavin MacLeod , Robert Guillaume , Rich Christiano  |  PG |  DVD
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (269 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Gavin MacLeod, Robert Guillaume, Jansen Panettiere
  • Directors: Rich Christiano
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Surround Sound
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Phase 4 Films
  • DVD Release Date: May 4, 2010
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (269 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003BJO8Q4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,695 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Best buddies Dustin, Albert and Mark are twelve year old boys looking forward to a summer of fun in 1970.  When Dustin mows the lawn of seventy-five year old Jonathan Sperry, a man he has seen at church, a unique friendship develops. What happens the rest of this summer is something Dustin and his friends will never forget.

A Christian family film about faith and forgiveness, The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry is a leisurely paced story concerning an elderly man who shares his faith with a young boy and how that simple act helps shape the lives of many. The movie is set in the simpler times of the summer of 1970. Dustin is a respectful 12-year-old boy who mows lawns for the neighbors, has just developed his first crush on a girl, and is spending the summer hanging out with his two good friends Albert and Mark. When elderly neighbor Mr. Sperry asks Dustin if he'll start mowing his lawn, Dustin gladly agrees, and soon Mr. Sperry begins sharing the Bible and his faith with Dustin. Before long, Dustin and his friends find themselves enjoying regular Bible study at Mr. Sperry's home. Through gentle words and engaging activities, Mr. Sperry helps Dustin and his friends discover how faith and the Bible can improve their lives, not only in the broadest sense, but also with some very specific lessons about forgiveness, problem solving, and even effectively dealing with bullying. This film delivers a wholesome message about faith and seeing things from another's point of view, but the pace is deliberately slow and the complete absence of normal preadolescent energy may well cause some contemporary viewers to lose interest. Gavin MacLeod and Jansen Panettiere give solid performances as Jonathan Sperry and Dustin, respectively, and it's great to see Robert Guillaume in a highly effective appearance as Mr. Sperry's neighbor Mr. Barnes. Bonus features include a 39-minute behind-the-scenes featurette with Gavin McLeod, director Rich Christiano, and producer Chad Gunderson; a full-length commentary with Rich Christiano and Gavin McLeod; a look at the various houses used in the film; interview footage with composer Jasper Randall; a special message from director Rich Christiano about his own faith; and contact information for related ministries. (Ages 7 and older) --Tami Horiuchi

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
151 of 151 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must See for ALL!! March 12, 2010
By B. King
Secrets of Jonathan Sperry (Full Ac3) My husband and I came across the movie by pure circumstance as we were searching for something to do one afternoon. We immediately became intrigued by what we read about the movie and set out to see it in a town 40 minutes away. It was well worth the drive!! It is the best movie we had seen in a very long time. Our only regret was that our kids were not with us watching it too. It is the story of a boy learning to cope with a bully while really learning to cope with life as he learns about God and the Bible from an elderly man in the neighborhood. The lessons are subtle at first and a little more direct as the boy becomes more curious and seeks Mr.Sperry out more and more, along with his friends. But even at it's most direct this movie is not heavy handed in a religious aspect. It's more about seeing things and people in our lives from another perspective ... one we might not ever find if we do not seek it out.
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65 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SPECTACULAR MOVIE >>>A MUST SEE BY ALL AND ALL AGES March 16, 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
AMAZING movie...the movie is set in the 1970's about 3 boys and their lifes in a small town. Very intrieging movie with just a good wholesome story about life and a special friendship with a christian man and his testimony he has for the Lord. A MUST see for all christians and their families of all ages..ANYONE and EVERYONE should see this movie.THe plan of salvation is clearly seen. A HEART TO HEART MOVIE>> YOU WON't BE DISAPPOINTED>>>very refreshing to have a movie made and shown in the USA in 2010 what a blessing!!!!!!!!!!!
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45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT MOVIE March 24, 2010
By R.G.
My children (ages 11-17)and I all enjoyed this movie. I wish there were more out there like this one... we came away from it feeling inspired and good! You should definitely plan on seeing this!
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry May 14, 2010
I rarely review a dvd but my ten year old son and I sat down last Saturday afternoon to watch The Secret Life of Jonathan Sperry. I wasn't quite sure what kind of movie this would be BUT I was pleasantly surprised by the intriguing story. There is amazing cast of actors but it's the message of the movie that will really touch your heart. I was so glad that my ten year old was watching it with me. He laughed and cried (well he had tears in his eyes). This movie is based on a true story. A story that will touch your soul. It is not an action, fast moving picture show. It is a slower make-you-sit-up-and-take-notice movie! This movie reminds me of the quote by S. Truett Cathy (founder of Chick-fil-A), "It's easier to build boys than to mend men." A wonderful movie for boys but it also gave "me pause" -- to think about the words I speak, about the people I (need) to tell about Jesus' love, about forgiveness and what a child learns today will stay with him for a lifetime. Need a great family movie? This is it! A wonderful 5 star watch!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I just bought this movie.... May 14, 2010
I am always looking for wonderful family type movies with a Christian message. I found this movie at Walmart last week and could not wait to see it as I had seen the movie advertised on tv. I was so touched by its content and message and as I watched the movie progress I found myself sobbing. Some said that it had everything but an altar call and that bothered them. I say that more movies are needed with a story that touches hearts like this did for me. I went back to Walmart and bought three more to give as gifts. I did not think it sugarcoated the salvation message. In fact it made it so simple for someone to watch and comprehend what Mr. Christiano was trying to get the audience to see. The scene at the cemetary especially was heart wrenching and also how Mr. Sperry showed the Lord's love to those boys who then took that love and shared it with friends. How can this be a movie that would not be rated 5 stars is what I want to know. I am so tired of what Hollywood has to offer our families and when producers and writers bring us films with a message and with no cursing and one that pierces hearts with the salvation message I say, "Bring them on!" I have purchased almost all their movies and also The Morning After films which I enjoyed. I enjoy them because they reach people and they certainly reached my heart with truth and conviction. Families need to watch The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry and plan a discussion afterwards about what it meant to you and other family members. It would be a great addition to your dvd library as it is mine now. Patty Hager
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent for the Whole Family! May 11, 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is one of the best movies I have seen in YEARS. There was so much publicity for "Blindside" showing strong Christian values, yet I came away very disappointed. This movie will NOT disappoint! Wonderful character-building themes woven throughout the film; deals with many important topics such as the difficulties of losing a father at a young age; the value of senior citizens being involved with young people; kindness and forgiveness; how to deal with a bully; and so much more. We will definitely be showing this at our church, and passing it around to all our friends. EXCELLENT!!!!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just fantastic.......WOW! May 31, 2010
What can I say about The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry. I watched it on netflix and It is one of the most inspirational films I have ever watched. It is a story about how one man can make a difference in many lives. Sounds like many other films you seen? Well not this one....
It makes you want to be that person that inspires, It gives hope. It makes you want to share the bible to more people in even the most subtle ways.

It bares the lessons that even though some people are resistant to God and his word, acts of kindness although rejected can and do prevail as the doors to the hearts of those that have kept their hearts chained up for so long...

The setting of this movie makes you long to live in a simpler time in history...

This is a MUST see.
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