Illustra Launches New Website with Free Videos
Now that DVDs are disappearing, Illustra Media has decided to put most of its high-quality material online without cost, supported by donations and subscriptions.
Few Christian film producers can match the quality of Illustra Media. For twenty years, its production team, with funds only a fraction of those available to big name studios, has produced hit after hit in the fields of apologetics and Biblical inspiration. These films are universally praised by Christian leaders for their quality and content.
Later this year, Illustra will be launching a site devoted to its intelligent-design films – films that have changed the world and re-invigorated the debate about evolution vs design. Over 8 million copies of Unlocking the Mystery of Life, translated into Mandarin, have been carried into mainland China; some 20 other translations are also circulating across continents. Many CEH readers will be familiar with that classic, as well as The Privileged Planet, Darwin’s Dilemma and most recently, Origin. Illustra’s “Design of Life” collection, featuring Metamorphosis, Flight: The Genius of Birds, and Living Waters, have matched the production quality of top nature documentaries such as those produced by PBS, NOVA, and National Geographic. The only difference is the world view: instead of slavish devotion to Darwinian evolution, Illustra’s films put intelligent design back in the game. With thought-provoking content, exceptional visuals and animations, and rich original music, these films are ‘evergreen’—forever satisfying to watch.
The content of this new website is based on a promise Jesus made in the Gospel of John: “I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). This “abundant life” has nothing to do with material wealth, power or fame. Instead, Jesus offered something far more valuable—a personal relationship with the Creator of the universe, and with it forgiveness, joy, compassion and the “peace that surpasses all understanding,” regardless of how difficult our circumstances may be.
Fans of the intelligent design documentaries may not be aware that La Mirada Films has, since 1997, produced 11 full-length films that have “focused on content vital to a satisfying, consistent walk with God” – a more abundant life:
- The Case for a Creator with Lee Strobel: the legal journalist’s journey out of atheism based on scientific evidence
- The Case for Christ with Lee Strobel: Lee’s transformation from atheist to Christian upon examining the evidence
- The Case for Faith with Lee Strobel: how to deal with the toughest questions Christians face about evil and suffering
- Prophecies of the Passion: how the Old Testament predicted exact details of Christ’s death and resurrection.
- The Exodus Revealed: an examination of the physical and archaeological evidence for Moses and the Israelites’ journey out of Egypt
- Does God Exist? Multi-angle live recording of a debate between apologist William Lane Craig and the late atheist Christopher Hitchens
- The Power of Prayer – amazing true stories of answered prayer
- Heaven and Hell – what the Bible says about the two choices facing us in eternity
- The End Times – an exploration of Bible prophecies of the last days
- Amazing Grace – enduring true stories behind five classic hymns
- King of Creation – orchestrated hymns, Scripture, and nature photography combined into 8 peace-generating episodes
To make this content more appealing for modern viewers who cannot often endure or afford more than a few minutes to watch something, the films have been divided into short episodes ranging from 4 to 12 minutes each. That way, anyone can link to short, targeted episodes and post them on Facebook, Twitter or other social media platforms and share the content with friends. New material will be regularly added to the site, to supplement the 48 modules already available.
The currently-posted video episodes are organized into the following subject categories in the “Videos” drop-down menu:
- Evidence for Faith (9 episodes)
- Prophecies and Promises (10 episodes)
- The Power of Prayer (5 episodes)
- Inspiration and Devotion (7 episodes)
- Fuel for the Journey (5 episodes)
- Facing Evil and Suffering (5 episodes)
- Reaching the World (4 episodes)
- Awesome Wonder (3 episodes from the Design of Life series)
Additional episodes from the films, including rarely-seen footage from Bonus Features on certain DVDs, will be added each month. Illustra also hopes to produce brand new content as resources permit.
Today marks a turning point. In the YouTube and Vimeo age, everyone knows that DVD sales are dropping fast. Viewers are impatient. They expect to see what they want when they want it, where they want it – on their smartphone, tablet, home computer or internet TV. Few are willing to pay for content, even high-quality original material. For a production company whose mission is to get these films seen by the widest possible audience, the change is an opportunity. On the ‘glass half empty’ side, a decline in hardcopy sales means a potential major drop in income for Illustra. But on the ‘glass half full’ side, the films can now be multiplied to reach a much larger global audience. People can link to and share this content at the touch of a few keystrokes, and watch it anywhere, without being tied to a DVD player.
Illustra Media / La Mirada Films is trusting God that viewers will seize these opportunities, become a part of the “web outreach team” and spread these films as far as possible. They believe that, in turn, more who are able will support Illustra financially so that the team can keep making films like these.
Give it a try! It couldn’t be easier. Browse the rich content on this site, find an episode you’d like to share, and click the ‘paper airplane’ icon to post it on Facebook or wherever your friends hang out. Prayerfully consider what role you might play in using the John 10:10 Project to spread the healing message of Christ to a lost world. Try this one.
Declaration: David Coppedge is on the board of directors of Illustra Media.