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Pope Francis supports ‘Sound of Freedom’ movie, prayed for its success — despite attacks from left

 September 2, 2023

The blockbuster independent film Sound of Freedom has quietly made its mark at the box office this summer, outperforming marquee releases such as Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One and Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny.

A key factor separating it from other big-ticket films has been the endorsement it received from none other than Pope Francis, as the Daily Mail reported.

The Pontiff not only supports the film but has also prayed for its success and even possesses a personal copy.

Inside "Sound of Freedom"

Brought to the screen in large part by Alejandro Gómez Monteverde, this riveting film delves into the life of a federal agent on a perilous quest to liberate children from a sex trafficking operation in Colombia.

Inspired by real-life hero Timothy Ballard, founder of the anti-trafficking initiative Operation Underground Railroad (OUR), this narrative shines a light on a global crisis.

Despite significant setbacks, which included a protracted release delay, producer Eduardo Verástegui remained committed to the film's impactful message.

During a private audience with Pope Francis in 2015, Verástegui shared his vision for the film, emphasizing its mission to raise awareness, the first step in countering child trafficking.

Deeply moved, the Pope affirmed the importance of this cause and promised to pray for the success of the endeavor.

Following its release, the film remarkably grossed over $180 million against a modest $14.5 million budget.

Verástegui updated Pope Francis following the film's release, and the Pontiff expressed his joy at the production's global impact, Newsweek reported.

Public Reception and Controversies

While Pope Francis, an outspoken critic of human trafficking, has lauded the film, it hasn't been without its share of controversy, especially amid the current American political landscape.

Debates have ensued about the film's accuracy and its portrayal of certain events, with some linking it to QAnon supporters. High-profile publications such as the Guardian labeled it a "QAnon-adjacent thriller."

Similarly, Rolling Stone framed it as a "superhero movie for dads with brainworms: The QAnon-tinged thriller".

Erin Albright, an attorney specializing in the fight against human trafficking, described it as a sensationalized take on the issue.

However, Monteverde has vehemently defended his creation, highlighting its apolitical nature and denying claims that it promulgates conspiracy theories.

Beyond the political noise, the film has garnered numerous favorable ratings, securing an impressive 8.3/10 on IMDB and a commendable 64% on Rotten Tomatoes.

Now set to premiere in the U.K. and Ireland, early reviews there hint at its profound impact on viewers, with many on X (formerly Twitter) sharing their emotional responses.