Movie Reviews

Deep Impact (1998)

Directed by Mimi Leder (Pay it Forward, The Peacemaker)

Starring Tea Leoni, Elijah Wood, Morgan Freeman, and Robert Duvall

Remember the old school discussion called “Lifeboat.” “A big ship just sank. Ten people jump into a lifeboat, but the lifeboat only has enough food and room for 5. Who should you throw overboard?” Thus begins the ethical dilemma.

Can the same be said when a meteor is going to destroy the surface of the earth, and the President of the U.S. has too choose 1 million people to hide in some deep caves, preventing the extinction of the human race. Who gets to go in the caves? And what about everybody else?

Looking back, some don't remember the difference between the two meteor films, “Armageddon” and “Deep Impact.” (Nothing new to Hollywood—two competing films being released with similar plot lines: 1988's “Big” and “Vice Versa,” 1989's “K-9” and “Turner and Hootch,” etc.) Armageddon was the Bruce Willis/Ben Affleck comedy, for lack of a better term, about the drillers who had to learn how to be Astronauts so they could take a space shuttle ride to the rapidly approaching meteor, drill a bomb into the center of it and save earth. The movie has more laughs than tears.

Deep Impact is more of a drama. The film primarily follows Tea Leoni's character, an NBC reporter who accidentally stumbles upon news of the “end of the world” event and finds herself trying to get her own life and her own relationships in order before “the end.”

The movie also follows the lives of some normal everyday characters such as teen Elijah Wood's character, who doesn't make the “cut” and seeks to find a place of safety for his girlfriend, her baby sister and himself.

I love this movie- it makes people think about what is truly important … vs. the trivial temporary stuff we fill our lives with every day.

The movie makes a strong statement about the importance of relationships (which is a very Biblical concept). In the end we see several characters seeking to restore relationships or communicate with loved ones because they realize that those relationships were the most important things in their life.

Not bad teaching in a world so full of temporary distractions.

Conversation Starter
Three Simple Questions (with Answers You May Be Looking for):

  1. What are some of the messages or themes you observed in this movie?
  2. How do you suppose we—as serious Christ-followers—should react to this movie?
  3. How can we move from healthy, Bible-based opinions about this movie to actually living out those opinions?


Jonathan McKee

Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Guy's Guide to FOUR BATTLES Every Young Man Must Face; The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices; If I Had a Parenting Do Over; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers on Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.

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