Have you ever watched a movie without dialogue? Whether it’s 2012 Academy Award winner The Artist or a film you watched while the volume button on your television was broken, it can be a strange - and yet, liberating - experience. In Fred and Sharon Wilharm’s follow-up to their first silent film, The Good Book, they deliver a passionate love story across several decades in Providence.
In 2000, the Wilharms began working on documentaries, but by the release of Facing the Giants in 2009, the couple decided that there was an opportunity to make a dialogue-free film. To be clear, it’s not silent: the indie artist soundtrack that provides the film’s score amply fills in the theology that viewers might miss while watching. But it’s an experiment in the different.
The Good Book’s star, and now cross-over actress, Jenn Gotzon says that the Wilharms cultivate a family telling a story that other people can see themselves in. Her words about the story The Good Book tells stand as a good view of Providence: “It’s a story through action which represents what a Christian life should be. We should be living our life through how we love, forgive, and have grace which is without words.”
For those who haven’t heard of the film but are intrigued by the premise of a dialogue-free film, here’s the rundown: Two starcrossed lovers occupy times and spaces that cross paths over decades. Mitchell is the Christ figure who continues to pursue and love Rachel from afar. While both of them were introduced to faith at a young age, one chooses to stay close to that heart and the other rejects it for various reasons. But like the Parable of the Prodigal Son or the story of the people of Israel, Providence proves that God never gives up on us, that God continues to seek us out.
Check out the film next week, to see a sweet glimpse of how romance can work powerful goodness in our lives, and to see the beauty that God works, even in the broken. You’ll be moved by the vision of the film - and the perfection it creates without saying a single word.
Providence releases on home media on May 24.