WITNESSES is a new Latter-day Saint movie that tells the powerful true story of the Three Witnesses to the Book of Mormon. For nearly 200 years, skeptics and critics have been tried to explain away what the witnesses stated—that they saw angels and held the golden plates from which the Book of Mormon was translated. To their dying days, they defended their testimonies even when faced with threatening mobs, ridicule, and betrayal by friends and family.
I attended the premier last night at the Megaplex at Thanksgiving Point. I had seen the trailers on social media and I personally know the director, some of the producers, and several others involved in making and distributing the film. I knew they had rounded up a world-class cast. I hoped that it would be good. And it was. The cinematography was beautiful. The acting was superb. The storyline was compelling. It is the most ambitious film yet that tells the story of the translation of the Book of Mormon, the human relationships among early leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and, especially, the remarkable stories of the three witnesses of the Book of Mormon.
This film helps you get to know David Whitmer, Oliver Cowdery, and Martin Harris as real people who had real struggles. They were imperfect, but they were remarkable men who did the best they could in unimaginably difficult times. For nearly 200 years, their testimony of what occurred has been published with every copy of the Book of Mormon.
It may be easy to look back 200 years and judge people based on what little historical evidence we have today. This film helps us see them as real people who at times found it hard to believe in themselves and to have faith when it appeared that everyone around them turned against them. I appreciate what they did and the witness they left of the Book of Mormon.
The film opens this weekend, beginning Friday, June 4, 2021. I encourage you to attend opening weekend. The success of independent films is often dependent on how good opening weekend is.
Watch a trailer for the movie Witnesses:
- To find a theatre near you, visit WitnessesFilm.com. If it isn’t playing in your city, click “Bring Witnesses to Your City This Summer” to request it.
- Learn more about the backstory in the article “The Making of ‘Witnesses’: The Fulfillment of a Persistent Dream“
- “New movie about witnesses to the Book of Mormon shows a raw, human side to early Church leaders“