The trailer for “Machine Gun Preacher” is extraordinary in that it acquaints you with a story that one could easily write off as blockbuster sensationalism — except most of it actually happened. Unfortunately it overstays its welcome and goes the way of the typical Liam Neeson action movie trailer, revealing all the plot details we’d rather have paid for on opening night.

Machine Gun Preacher

Relativity Media

This unlikely tale of Hells Angels biker Sam Childers’ (Gerard Butler, “300”) conversion and subsequent journey into the heart of LRA-occupied Sudan goes well beyond the tame character of the typical inspirational film. Armed with RPGs, assault rifles and the street sense of a reformed criminal, Childers conducts secret raids against the LRA to rescue children who’ve been brainwashed and forced to fight for the rebels’ cause.

It seems counterproductive to outline the entire narrative of a film adapted from a true story that’s so rife with grandeur from start to finish. If you whet an audience’s appetite by giving them a brief glimpse of a protagonist who doles out vigilante justice with an AK-47 in one hand and a Bible in the other, it’s a safe bet they’ll come see your movie.

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