Arts & Entertainment

A Hug to the LGBTQ Community from a Post-Evangelical Filmmaker at New Hope Film Festival

“At the End of the Day,” a dramatic comedy about a conservative Christian professor who experiences a profound change when he goes undercover and infiltrates a gay support group to thwart their plans to open an LGBTQ youth shelter, screens at the New Hope Film Festival on July 26.

“I grew up in a conservative, evangelical Christian home,” explained writer/director Kevin O’Brien. “I was taught that we had exclusivity to the truth, and the best way to love the rest of the world was to tell them our ‘truth.’ Specifically, we were taught that ‘love the sinner, hate the sin’ was the loving approach to the LGBTQ community.”

“It wasn’t until I started experiencing life and people outside of that bubble that I realized how dangerous that worldview is, how much I didn’t know, and that the LGBTQ community is full of the most loving, compassionate, and giving people I’ve ever met,” O’Brien added.

After losing his wife and counseling practice, the only thing 32 year-old Dave Hopper has going for himself is his part-time professorship at his alma mater, a growing Christian college. And the only reason he even got that job was because his previous professor, now ambitious dean, pulled a few strings.

The dean’s plans for growth hit a snag when the property he wants to develop has been promised to a gay support group – which has plans to open an LGBT homeless teen shelter if they can raise the money in time. The dean is forced to take drastic measures, offering Dave his dream job, but he only gets it if he goes undercover in the group and stops them from raising the funds needed to buy the property.

Dave reluctantly agrees, and for the first time, is met face-to-face with the community he has been counseling against his entire career. The awkward and emotional experiences that follow lead Dave on a journey of truth, revealing that life and love are not as black and white as he first thought.

“It is my hope that “At the End of the Day” can bring healing to many who have been harmed, encouragement to those who have been doing the hard work of equality, and an opportunity for others to question their black-and-white worldview,” said O’Brien.

The film, produced by Kevin and his wife Teresa O’Brien, stars Stephen Shane Martin, Danielle Sagona, Tom Nowicki, Chris Cavalier, and Bucks County resident Susan Mulholland. It screens at New Hope Film Festival on Thursday, July 26, at 7:30 p.m. The festival runs from July 20-29 at New Hope Arts, 2 Stockton Ave., in New Hope.


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