MovieChat Forums > Billy: The Early Years (2008) Discussion > Templeton-Graham conflict had great pote...

Templeton-Graham conflict had great potential---but screenplay failed.

I was surprised that the Templeton theme was just a plot device to string together a mundane biography. The fascinating theological questions and tensions were largely ignored. So I was very disappointed. And based on the box office receipts, I guess the aiming for the mass audience instead didn't work. So I wish they could have taken the high road.

Nevertheless, various portrayals were excellent, but there was no saving an inadequate screenplay. Those of us who attended the YFC rallies and early crusades will be interested in the photos at the end of the film. I recognized a few people I'd forgotten about.

I had hoped they would include a detailed, major scene of the Westminster Hotel meeting in Winona Lake, Indiana, where a long prayer session (after a YFC rally) was held just before Billy went to Los Angeles to suddenly find himself national news. All of the original BGEA people were there (if memory serves) and everyone looked back on that moment as when everything accelerated. A lot of eulogies at the funerals of various BGEA founders mentioned that meeting in the Rainbow Room of the hotel where around fifty were gathered to pray for Graham's harvest in California.