Fireproof (2008)

fireproof poster 2008 movie
1.5 Overall Score
Story: 1/10
Acting: 1/10
Visuals: 2/10


Horrible acting, horrible story, bad visuals

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Fireproof

Studio:  Sherwood Pictures

Genre(s):  Drama/Romance

Release Date(s):  September 26, 2008

MPAA Rating:  PG


Wow…this is intense…yes…

Captain Caleb Holt (Kirk Cameron) is doing a dangerous job.  Leading the fire department of Albany, he is saving lives on a daily basis as he tries to guide his crew.  Caleb’s home life however is falling apart.  His marriage to Catherine (Erin Bethea) is crumbling as she tries to balance work and her ailing parents.  When Caleb’s father (Harris Malcom) gives Caleb a set of instructions that helped solidify his marriage to Caleb’s mother (Phyllis Malcom), Caleb tries to turn his relationship around and finds out what is really important.

Directed by Alex Kendrick, Fireproof was a religious based romance-drama.  Much of the cast and crew were made up from volunteers from the Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia.  The movie received mixed reviews but had a massive box-office return by primarily focusing on Christian groups.


Smooth Operator!

I heard how bad Fireproof was and when I found it for a $1, I had to see it for myself.  Yes, you can find movies that are technically worse than Fireproof, but I will say it did live up to its reputation in multiple categories.

The first problem I have with the film is the message.  I get that the end result is the main goal and happiness and fulfilment is the important outcome, but Caleb’s way of “winning” his wife back seems a bit deceptive.  A relationship is supposed to be a two way street and telling her that he’s going to win her back should have been part of the plan.  Here, it feels like she’s being tricked back to the relationship and the only factors that end up saving it are really lucky (I’m sure some argue “God given”) breaks that clue her in to the idea…if she didn’t learn he gave the money for her parents, she might not have gotten back with him.  Plus, his father pretty much just was dishonest about how the “rules” work since he didn’t open up that it was his wife that followed them.  Is the fact that Cameron’s character wouldn’t listen to his mother really an excuse?  I don’t think so.


Hey, have you been to a bathroom in Minneapolis-St. Paul airport have you?

If you buy the message or not, the movie is pretty atrocious.  “Wacky” events like hot sauce drinking, lackluster fire rescues, and one of the worst romances between Catherine and a secretly married doctor all add to the pretty weak message.  It isn’t a fun movie to watch, and it is so heavy handed that even the “fun” scenes don’t look like the actors are having fun (plus, everyone seems like a bad stereotype).

The script isn’t aided by the actors either.  I don’t know if even Daniel Day Louis could have made this script work.  Kirk Cameron was never a great actor and trying to act dramatic isn’t his strong suit.  Both he and Erin Bethea feel like community players at in a bad educational play, and they are backed up with actors who might actually be slightly better than them.  It also didn’t help that the actor playing Cameron’s dad reminded me of Mr. Wide Stance Larry Craig who got busted for propositioning sex in a bathroom…sorry, that is what the guy looked like.


Yes…your marriage can be fireproof too!

The movie also looked cheap.  It wasn’t even a Hallmark Channel level of cheapness and tense moments like rescues just weren’t shot with an urgency or skill that they needed to build tension.  Romance scenes likewise also floundered and humorous scenes found no laughs.

Fireproof is bad.  It is a bad movie, a misguided message, and sadly people ate it up.  It is the type of movie that you can’t change opinions on so I don’t really expect to, but if you want a so-bad-it-is-good movie, you should check it out.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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