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Against All Hope

3.3 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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(Sep 15, 2009)
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Editorial Reviews

Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs, Thelma & Louise) makes his film debut portraying alcoholic family man Cecil Moe in this gritty and inspirational drama. Cecil cannot escape the traumatic memories of his childhood, which pushes him further down the road of depression...and further into the bottle. Tortured by nightmares and driven to despair as his world crumbles around him, Cecil reaches for the phone book in a final act of desperation and calls the one man who can help him save his family and his life

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Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Michael Madsen, Maureen McCarthy, Cecil Moe George Lowther, Timothy Joosten Kevin Mulroy
  • Directors: Edward T. McDougal
  • Format: NTSC
  • Region: All Regions
  • Studio: CreateSpace
  • DVD Release Date: September 15, 2009
  • Run Time: 92 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002PAP6Q6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #633,824 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
In this 'oldie but goodie', 90-minute, color, single, DVD disc film, AGAINST ALL ODDS is a true story of acute alcoholism and it's ugliness, the affect it has on the alcoholic, the non-drinking spouse and the children, not to mention the relational issues between man and wife, the finances, the loss of housing and the overall, trust factor. A married father of two, was seemingly hopelessly addicted too anything with alcohol content in it. Try as he may too quit the bar scene, alcohol, beer or any kind of adult beverage, had a 'vice grip' hold on Cecil Moe. Actor Michael Madsen in his first film debut portrays Cecil Moe. In a riveting depiction, he recalls his needless and horrific abuse as a child and the vicious murder of his father by his obsessively controlling stepmother. Who also, physically, mentally and emotionally abused his beloved mother, as well. The rightfully hated stepmother was initially a live-in nurse that eventually spewed forth hate, anger, hostility and vicious bitterness towards both of his parents and especially, towards him. Increasingly..., so much so, that while trying to console himself as a grown man who was trying on his own to make sense of and process the unwarranted abuse that he had been subjected too during the formative years of his life, found liquor and beer became his best friends and constant companions. And after having come to the end of himself, he reaches out in dire desperation to One Person, Who actually helped him and made it stick. Just who was that person? What exactly happened? When and where did it happen? To find out, you'll just have to watch the movie. Especially, if you yourself dear reader, are struggling with your own addiction to alcohol or overindulging in your 'social drinking' and are having a battle putting the bottle down.Read more ›
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Format: DVD
This was a pleasant surprise. I was expecting a bunch of dribble from Lifetime. However, I saw this as a faith movie. This may very well have been a true story of Cecil Moe. I'm not sure where he was born, but he had a good struggle throughout his early life where his mother becomes ill, and is left in care of by a abusive nurse named Myrna. This is where the children should stand up, and be noticed as Cecil's mother would die at the hands of Myrna, and Cecil's father is so snowed by Myrna that he doesn't listen to Cecil's plea to get rid of Myrna, and then it's too late as Cecil's father becomes a willing slave to her, and even to the point of making him forget that Cecil is his son. Then Myrna manipulates Cecil's father into shipping off Cecil into the Navy, and when Cecil's father tries to go see Cecil before he's shipped off to war Myrna abuses him to keep him from going. Unfortunately, Cecil finds out about his father's death after being overseas, and then begins his addiction to alcohol. He marries, and has 2 sons, but his alcoholism comes first because in Cecil's eyes it is his savior. However, after 12 years of marriage to both Johnny Walker, and his wife Cecil becomes aware that he can't be married to the both of them, so he goes out of despiration to a local pastor, and bares his soul, and then the pastor leads Cecil to Christ in a new way he never heard before. Before this Cecil would go to church, and hear the word of God, but it didn't sink in until this point, and before he leaves the pastor's home Cecil welcomes Jesus Christ into his heart, and home. However, his wife is at first skeptical because of all the broken promises before, and then because he becomes true to his word, and then it's she feels inadequate.Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
While not the biggest budget movie ever made, the power of this true personal story really resonates. The film vividly demonstrates the power of a heart being changed through the message of God's love and grace. It may seem a little "preachy" to some, but the fact is that Cecil's Moe's life WAS completely changed by the message, and that has to be good news for anyone who is willing to listen. No one, no matter what their condition, is beyond the possibilities of God's care.
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Format: DVD
Here's how you do it: Believe in God and repent for your sins. Then things should turn around within the next day or so.

Until the last fifteen minutes, this movie just plays as a bad recap of a drunk's crappy life. His mom dies. His stepmom's a btch. His dad dies. He drinks. He gets married. He has kids. He drinks some more. His wife gets mad. He disappoints his kids. The wife threatens to leave. He calls up a reverend late night b/c he wants to kill himself. Then after the recap happens, that's when we get the "Left Behind"-like subtle message.

"He needed a paycheck". This is the phrase I had to repeat over and over once credits started to roll so I wouldn't lose my respect for Madsen.

Madsen drops to his knees and begs Christ's forgiveness. Once he does, he walks outside and actually says that he sees the world in a different way. He tells his wife that he's found God and that's good enough for her. Flip scene four months and the wife is tired of going to church. End the movie as Madsen walks by the bar and gives a soliloquy about how happy he is with Christ and without alcohol. Final moment? He gives a little dismissive wave to the bar (i.e. sin house) and give a gay, Miami-Vice, after-school special congratulatory jump in the air as the camera freeze-frames. See why I had to repeat the phrase? "He needed a paycheck".

Man this movie is bad. The B-Grade 80's production values don't help much. The script could have easily been a "Touched By An Angel" episode. It could have been knocked out in 30 minutes plus commercials. The acting is wooden and never believable. Even Madsen, of whom I'm a big fan and is the soul reason I sat through this, makes it clear that this is his first acting job and he doesn't know his a$$ from his elbow yet on camera.
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