Chance Gibbs

Another week, another movie for me to take in at the theater.

Unlike everyone else in the world, I chose to skip the latest Marvel smash hit, “Avengers: Endgame,” and saw “Breakthrough,” a low-key Christian drama based on the book, “The Impossible,” that tells the incredible true story of a boy who survived a horrific submersion in an icy Missouri lake.

In January of 2015, John Smith, a Guatemalan-born 14-year-old boy who was adopted as a child and now lives in Missouri, was playing with two friends in Lake St. Louis.

Against their better judgement, and the warning of a local restaurant owner, the boys run and play on the fragile ice until tragedy strikes and all three boys plummet through to the ice cold water below.

Two of the boys are rescued and one, John Smith, sinks to the bottom, where he will stay for 15 minutes, unconscious.

Divers jump in to perform what they are sure will be a body retrieval and not a rescue, and just as they are about to give up, a voice speaks to firefighter Tommy Shine and tells him to “Go back.”

He does, and finds John’s lifeless body.

Life-saving efforts continue on the way to and at the hospital, until finally, the medical staff call them off, and leave a lifeless, and pulseless John Smith, with his mother, Joyce, so she can say goodbye.

Through the power of prayer and God’s intervention, John comes back to life and is flown to a better hospital for intensive care to continue.

I won’t ruin much more of the film for you, but I can tell you if you enjoy faith-based and feel-good films, this is definitely for you.

I didn’t expect to even like this movie.

While I believe in God, I was worried that it would be corny, or feel like a made for TV movie, but I was wrong.

I haven’t been this emotionally shaken by a film since “Marley and Me.”

“Excellent,” is the only word I can use to describe it, and the actor’s performances are truly top-notch.

It tells an incredible true story.

A story documented by facts from the hospitals they occurred in.

John Smith was pronounced dead for 45 minutes until his mother’s screams of prayer literally and immediately produced a pulse in the emergency room, AFTER all medical staff had ceased efforts to save him.

If I didn’t believe in God, this story would make a believer out of me.

I get chills just thinking about how powerful this movie was.

Go see it, and God bless.

Chance Gibbs is an actor and writer living in the Dallas area. He’s appeared in numerous television shows, films, professional and community theater, and TV commercials, and has been a contributor to news publications since 2007.