Romantic comedy is a genre rarely attempted by Christian film producers. Christian family-operated Duststorm Productions recently completed their first feature film “God Help Me”—a Christian romantic comedy with quirky characters and some physical comedy.
Trudy (Shelley Findley) is the girl of Ryan’s (Tom Miner) dreams. Only catch is Trudy is waiting for God to reveal Mr. Right to her, and Ryan is not exactly what she had in mind. When Ryan and his buddies discover this, they devise a plan behind Ryans back to convince Trudy that God has chosen her to be with Ryan. With less than brilliant ideas, each plan backfires. Each scheme gets more ridiculous, as his friends Jack (George Moss), Lon (Jim Anderson), and Bridgett (Candace Orrino) dig themselves deeper and deeper into trouble trying to rationalize and justify each hair brain scheme meant to convince Trudy that she is meant to be with Ryan.
What happens when you play God with someones life? This off the wall comedy about dating and relationships attempts to provide an answer, along with lots of laughs.
This film project started years ago when producer Dan Olds wrote the screenplay. Dan later worked with Duststorm Productions on a scenario made completion of the movie possible. The project was financed with an initial $15,000 investment, money that came from a family painting that finally sold. This didn’t cover the total cost, but the production was truly low budget. The movie shot in Missouri (to reduce cost) and used local cast and crew (with the exception of Christian hip hop artist/actor George Moss who not only plays one of the characters, but also recorded a song just for the movie).
The 80 minute comedy was shot on a fourteen day shooting schedule a tight squeeze for this length film. Duststorms Reece Tedford believes, The physical comedy and quirky characters made it work. It was a risk for Dan and everyone involved. I mean its a $15,000 movie, thats nothing in the movie business.
Add to all that, the fact that “Napoleon Dynamite” was released just before pre-production began on the project. Would audiences be receptive to another comedy with quirky characters like that? Especially, the super critical Christian audience? Only time will tell. At the handful of prescreenings that have taken place some comparisons have been drawn, and the Tedford reports that the movie has been well received. Currently, audience laughter is the measuring stick of success.
Producer Dan Olds is also a Christian game developer and music producer. He is married to his wife Lori, and they have four children.
“God Help Me” has been released direct to DVD and is now available on-line through CustomFlix. For more information about Dust Productions, see their Web site: www.duststormproductions.com.
See movie review on Christian Spotlight.