Walk The Talk, a short South African movie about an ex-prisoner who finds hope when he hears the message of the gospel on the radio, is bringing hope in Christ to real-life prisoners in Cape Town.
During 27 screenings of the movie — 24 of which were in Pollsmoor Prison — 151 people made decisions for Christ, said missionary Jannie Marais, who does regular prison outreaches. He said every time he showed the movie, a number of people surrendered to Christ. He said he hoped to show the movie throughout the Western Cape.
“Howard Fyvie, who scripted and acted in the Regardt van den Bergh-directed film which was based on a true story, said: “Not many people are open to a preacher, but they will watch a movie.”
Marais agreed, saying: “Visual material has the ability to give you better insight and you can remember it more clearly afterwards. It also gives those who can’t read and write the opportunity to hear the gospel.
“After the screening, I share that in Jesus, everything’s already been paid for. They sit with so much condemnation, sadness, hopelessness; some are ready to give up because of what they have done, and society rejects them.”
During his gospel presentation Marais tells prisoners that they need to look at themselves from Christ’s point of view; who they are in Christ. He said he wanted them to realise “Wow, God has never rejected me.He hates my sin, but not me . I’m His creation. He has a plan and purpose for my life.”
He said: “I’ve experienced it time and time again that when I start talking to them afterwards, they would stop me and say ‘Sir, can we pray now?’ ” Often they would also ask if they could see the film again, he said.
Marais said he made sure the prisoners realised that once they had accepted Christ, they could not just carry on in their old ways; they needed to study His Word. Those whom he was able to see again, were invited to a five week follow up programme where the Walking with Jesus DVD was shown in association with Campus Crusade for Christ. There were also churches which hosted Bible studies for the prisoners.
“I have a passion in my heart to tour with this film throughout the Western Cape. It’s a brilliant film to help people to come to Christ; it tells of the help and hope there is for each in this society,” said Marais. “I would love to go to churches, schools as well as underprivileged communities.” Marais can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Walk The Talk was released by Movies For Life in May as the first of a proposed series of encouraging short films. It is one of the official selection films in the 2011 Transforming Stories International Christian Film Festival. The DVD is available at Christian Bookstores.