Review of the feature film “Milton’s Secret”, by Will Arntz

I ran into Mark Vicente at the opening of the new film Milton’s Secret down at the Chinese theater in Hollywood. Barnet Bain, the director was there for a packed screening.

The film is an adaptation of a story by Eckhart Tolle and Robert Friedman about a boy who’s in the midst of a contentious home life. The kid is obviously very sensitive and doesn’t know what to do with what he sees and feels. AND the kid next door is a bully and thinks Milton is public enemy number one.

Things are looking bad for everyone until Gramps comes to town. Luckily for the film the Gramps is one Donald Sutherland. He is rebellious, eccentric and, according to his daughter, half way to senile. Its lucky that its Mr. Sutherland playing the part, because the part could easily become a cliché of itself. And there’s the magic in the film – Milton and Grandad.

Films “with a message” can get a bit overly sweet, or sappy, or something, but in this case the interplay between Milton and Grandad is the core of the film. I asked Barnet about the film and he told me “once I realized it wasn’t about trying to get an idea across, but about a boy and his grandfather, the film made sense.”

Still it was apparent that Eckhart had his hands in the story. There was a lurking awareness behind the twists and turns.

In writing this review I poked around on the internet to see the word out there. The Hollywood Reporter reported: “a story by pop-spirituality author Eckhart Tolle.” Reviewers just can’t help getting some dig in.

Its not what you would call a “big film”. Its not what I would call a message film. It really is a story about a boy going through a tough time and somehow being the better for it. I don’t know what kids that age would think, but the way Milton eventually deals with the bullying (which is quite a problem these days) is unique and something that I think would help many children in that difficult spot.

Barnet has been working for many years in the Spiritual Cinema world, and I for one was glad to be there and see his work up on the big screen.

Beyond Words Joins BLEEP

Thirty years ago, Beyond Words started along their path to changing how people view themselves and the world. From coffee table books to international bestsellers like Hidden Messages in Water and The Secret, and now to partnering with revolutionary filmmakers like Will Arntz and Betsy Chasse, Beyond Words is always on the lookout for what will take peoples’ lives to the next level.

Cynthia Black and Richard Cohn have worked diligently to create a company that draws the first and best in the world of transformation, and the fact that Will and Betsy came to them was no accident. A shared commitment to give people new access to why they are who they are and to give them new actions to take to live a life of their dreams, compels Will, Betsy, and Beyond Words to work together for the release of the 10th Anniversary edition of What the Bleep Do We Know?! This film was revolutionary in its time and Beyond Words is just the company to herald this milestone in the film’s history.

Working together to bring an updated and expanded version of What the Bleep?! to it’s fervent and faithful audience, Beyond Words, Will, and Betsy have marveled every step of the way at the passion, insights, and revolution this film brought about in it’s time. We continue to be excited at the reach and profound impact this film had and is still having on our society today. Ideas that were once almost unthinkable are now every day, explanations that once went over the heads of many of the people in theaters are now a topic of dinner table conversations. Just how influential, we may never know, but we know for sure that What the Bleep?! is a classic in the transformational DVD lexicon, and it will endure for years to come.

Beyond Words is thrilled to be a partner to Will and Betsy in spreading this message to a new audience, and rekindling the fervent hop and belief the film brought to the world 10 years ago.