Movie Review: The Living Dead
John Telgren

If you are expecting a horror flick, you will be disappointed. This is more along the lines of the Twilight Zone, featuring the strange, weird, and abnormal.

This documentary film follows a cult like group of people that worship a man that died two millennia ago. Further investigation reveals the strange and radical nature of this sect spoken against everywhere. First of all, their leader was executed as a criminal, yet they claim he came back to life yet left the earth 40 days later. Not only do they worship this man as a god, they claim that he is God, and therefore existed before he was born. They even claim that he lives in them today! They also claim that some day he will return from where ever he went, destroy the world, and establish an eternal kingdom. Their exclusivity is reflected in their teaching that most people will be in eternal torment and that only they will live in this eternal kingdom.

Their rituals are few, but equally strange. In addition to singing to and praying to their dead leader, they meet every weekend and partake in a bizarre meal, which is not a meal at all, but some strange cultic rite. They consume flat wafers and juice that is set aside for this rite, and teach that this is the body and blood of their executed leader. They claim that he is actually present as they consume what they claim is the body and blood of their leader.

What is really radical is that their beliefs do not stop at the doors of their holy places. When one becomes a part of this cult, their lives are literally turned inside out and upside down. One can see this even in the songs they sing. They sing songs with words like, "Soldiers of Christ Arise!" Some of their songs talk about being washed in blood, suffering with their leader, or doing "spiritual warfare." When one becomes a part of this cult, they call each other brother and sister, and claim that the members of the cult are now their eternal family. Their holy book includes teachings on beating their body, laying down their life for their leader, cutting off body parts in order to be more devoted. They claim not to have any allegiance to the government, but are "citizen's of Heaven," pledging their allegiance to their leader whom they claim is God. They claim not to be of the world and will often not participate in regular activities that any citizen would. They teach that homosexuality and abortion are damnable practices. They teach against divorce, safe sex that is consensual, and a host of other things that are out of the mainstream of society. This does not seem to bother them because they teach that they are supposed to be out of the mainstream.

In addition to this, they have special classes to indoctrinate their children in their teaching until their children are ready to make the radical commitment to be a follower of Jesus Christ. They teach that this is a death of self, which is where the title of this movie comes from.


"You will be hated by all because of My name, but the one who endures to the end, he will be saved" (Mk 13:13).