'Puzzle' is Well Made, but a Few Pieces are Missing

Based on the film Rompecabezas, Puzzle is one of those little-known independent films that sneaks into theaters with little to no fanfare, although the fact that it is being promoted “from the producer of Little Miss Sunshine” should help it get noticed somewhat. Puzzle is a quiet, little film about a woman who discovers that jigsaw puzzles are the key to changing her life. While the subject matter doesn’t sound all that exciting, the film really isn’t about puzzles but instead about one finding their voice, or so it appears. It’s also a message film that has its own agenda expecting the audience to agree with the choices of the main character and applaud her “brave” behavior. Frankly, it just feels manipulative.

Directed by Marc Turtletaub, Puzzle’s most impactful scene comes within the first few minutes. We see Agnes (Kelly MacDonald) cleaning up the house and they decorating it for a birthday party. Then we see her serving appetizers while being ignored by the guests. …

'Patterns of Evidence: Exodus' Might Change How You View the Bible

Review of the documentary, "Patterns of Evidence: Exodus."
Filmmaker Timothy Mahoney (Thinking Man Films)


It is not unusual for those who are non-religious to believe in the credibility of the Bible. Unfortunately, larger groups of Christians and Jewish people are now accepting the notion that the Bible is not a history book or are at least questioning that maybe the holy book is really just a book of stories. Some of this rise of questioning has to do with the lack of scientific evidence that many of the large events in the Bible. According to the documentary, Patterns of Evidence: Exodus, these doubts began to rise in the 1950's and has grown from there. However, this movie challenges these long-held theories head on.

The award-winning documentary is a compilation of a filmmaker’s 12-year journey to challenge the notion that the Exodus accounts in the Bible are real and not a myth. Timothy Mahoney states that while some people can still find comfort in the Bible even if they don't believe that the Old Testament accounts are factual, he is one who needs some sort of proof . In the video, he meets with archaeologists, theologians and scientists and chats about some of the more recent findings and discoveries that place the events of the Exodus (if true) much earlier than commonly thought. These include interviews with Israel Finkelstein, Kent Weeks, David Rohl, Benjamin Netanyahyu and Shimon Peres. The film is narrated by Mahoney as well as actor Kevin Sorbo (TV’s Hercules).

The two disc DVD set comes with the 119 minute documentary and bonus features including cast bios and interviews, a short on the making of the music of the movie and features like, “From Film to Book.”

Review of the documentary, "Patterns of Evidence: Exodus."
If this all sounds intellectual, well, it is. However, the information given isn’t too complex to understand. History buffs will eat this stuff up and naysayers may find this new information intriguing. The film has received awards for best documentary from 2014 Pan Pacific Film Festival, CFCFF International Film Festival, Best Picture from ICYM Gold Crown Award, Best Director from 2014 Worldfest Houston International Film Festival and Best Cinematography from Reelheart International Film Festival.

While overall this is a well-made film, the downside is that as much at Mahoney tries, the material given is still a bit dry for the causual viewer. The tagline of the film, “You Never Know Where a Crisis of Faith Will Lead You” sounds a lot more intriguing than is realized in the film. The first few minutes of the film shares Mahoney’s heartbreak when he learns that (up to this point) there is very little evidence to support the theory that the accounts of Exodus actually happened. There is a lot of passion written in that tagline and the fact that this man worked on this project for a dozen years is truly amazing. But the passion he feels about the subject just isn’t felt in the viewing of the film. The mild-mannered Mahoney is sadly, a bit dull and doesn’t have the charisma to keep your attention. These findings are exciting stuff, but they are not presented as such. Still, there is much to learn from this film and is an important accomplishment.


  1. Thank you for your review of our film. We appreciate it and glad you did the review- hopefully some of your readers checked it out.
    We wanted to let you know about our ‘Thinker Updates’ since you are a learning enthusiast. They include fascinating research & finds with new evidence related to the Bible, plus more . We typically send them out once a week and then archive the blogs for reference & pleasure reading. You can sign up here to become a ‘Thinker’ http://patternsofevidence.com/blog/2016/01/01/sign-up-for-thinker-updates/ .

    Bless you!


Post a Comment

Let us know what you think!

promote my blog