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A Review of the Movie "Kidnapped for Christ" by Dr. Bilal Yorulmaz

Kidnapped For Christ (2014)

Directed by Kate S. Logan

Documentary Features

Kidnapped For Christ is a documentary film that follows the experiences of several American teenagers after they were kidnapped from their homes and sent to an Evangelical Reform school named Escuela Caribe located in the Dominican Republic. Many of the parents discover their children are either gay or have some problems, and are sent to therapeutic Christian boarding schools in order to transform into healthy Christian adults in a school outside of U.S. law and inspection.

The movie focus on three teenagers’ experiences. One of them is David. He is sent to the school by his parents after he told them he is a gay. The others are Beth, who was sent to the school because of a anxiety disorder and Tai, who was sent for behavioral problems resulting from getting raped when she was a child.

The programme in the school is hard. It looks like army training. Moreover, punishments are severe. Those punishments could be hours of manual labor, exercising, actual physical beatings (bastinado), which they called “swats,” or sending to QR (Quiet Room) for days. According to the movie, some children lost their faith because of the abuse.

Finally, the documentary gives some informations about Escuela Caribe and therapeutic Christian boarding schools and shows the audiences some experiments at the school. However, the movie doesn’t answer many questions such as, how did parents find these schools? Why is there no inspection for these schools? And why do parents prefer these schools for therapy?

—  Bilal Yorulmaz

Yorulmaz, Bilal (2014) "Kidnapped for Christ," Journal of Religion & Film: V ol. 18: Iss. 1, Article 8.
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