Director: Cara Jones
Synopsis: An inside look at Reverend Sun Myung Moon’s Unification Church (the “Moonies”).
Blessed Child is an inside look at the cult called the “Moonies”. The ideas of “religious cults” are some that can strike people to a core. For me personally, I cannot help but feel sympathy for the people who are brainwashed into accepting the outlandish principles that come from them. Lives ruined and lost, and forced into a world of modern day slavery. The saddest part about it, is that the people who are involved in these cults believe this is the only thing that is keeping them alive.
The inside look Blessed Child gives us on people who are in the Church, and have gotten out of the Church, is quite fascinating. It is heartbreaking to see how some of these families have been truly affected to their core. It is one thing to be recruited to a cult, but to be born into it under the notion you are a “blessed child” is something much more devastating. These kids having to grow up in a world where they believe themselves to be “blessed” and sinless from birth, the traumatic toll it must take on someone when they have circumstances out of their control happen to them is something I would never want to experience.
Because the fact of the matter is, we are all born into a sinful world. We can try to be the best people possible, but that doesn’t mean we will ever scratch the surface of being perfect. Blessed Child shows us how these people who were led to believe they had to maintain a certain level of Godly nature find peace in the fact that they will never be what the cult wants them to be. They can only ever be the best they can be, and the people around them will either accept or reject that notion. It is hard to turn people away from a way of life they are so used to, but seeing Cara’s parents challenge the very foundations they knew gave me a glimmer of hope that people really can change for the better.
Final: Blessed Child is a well-made documentary into the lives of people born into the religious cult the “Moonies”. The story is interesting enough, but it is watching the growth of these real people that makes this a documentary worth viewing.
Jacob is a film critic and co-founder of the Music City Drive-In. He is a member of the Music City Film Critics’ Association and specializes in the awards season. You can find him on Twitter @Tberry57.