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Richland Student Media

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Richland Chronicle 5/07/24
Richland Chronicle 5/07/24

‘Sound of Freedom’ takes on child trafficking

Surprise box office hit digs deep into the child sex trade

On July 4, the movie “Sound of Freedom,” an action thriller dealing with the human trafficking and sexual exploitation of child sex slaves and their rescue by law enforcement was released by Angel Studios to more than 2,800 movie theaters in the U.S.

Tim Ballard (Jim Caviezel) rescues Honduran child Rocio (Alanna De La Rossa), who has been bought as a sex slave for the leader of a rebel group. (Photo Courtesy/IMDB.com)

“Sound of Freedom,” with a budget of $14.5 million, has earned over $175 million in ticket revenue in the U.S. competing against summer blockbuster hits such as “Barbie” released by Warner Bros. Pictures on July 21 and “Oppenheimer” released by Paramount Pictures on July 21 in the U.S. and the United Kingdom.

The reason given for “Sound of Freedom” having a PG-13 rating was “thematic content involving sex trafficking, violence, language, sexual references, some drug references and smoking throughout.” However, the film does not have any explicit sex scenes pandering to pedophiles. Still, I recommend this movie for adults only and not children.

“Sound of Freedom” is based on the true-life experiences of Tim Ballard, who for 12 years worked as a special agent investigating human trafficking for the Department of Homeland Security assigned to the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and was deployed as an undercover operative with the U.S. Child Sex Tourism Jump Team and for 10 years worked along the U.S.-Mexico border.

In the movie, Ballard works in Calexico, California, as a special agent for Homeland Security Investigations, where he arrests those possessing and distributing child pornography. This leads to the arrest of Earl Buchanan at the U.S.-Mexico border, who has purchased the child Miguel for the weekend. Ballard befriends the Honduran child Miguel who asks him to find his older sister, Rocio. Ballard learns that she may be in Colombia , where he meets Vampiro, a former drug cartel member and money launderer, played by Bill Camp, who is working to rescue children from sex traffickers and pedophiles and becomes Ballard’s right-hand man in Colombia .

Ballard is played by Jim Caviezel, who previously played Jesus Christ in the movie “The Passion of the Christ” and Edmond Dantès in the movie “The Count of Monte Cristo.”

Ballard’s wife, Katherine Ballard, played by Mira Sorvino, encourages her husband to rescue the children by remaining in Colombia and thereby quitting his government job despite having to support a family with six children and being just months away from being fully vested in his government pension.

Both the acting and cinematography are outstanding and the movie should receive one or more Academy awards, especially for taking on such a controversial subject. The movie’s producer is Eduardo Verástegui and the director is Alejandro Monteverde who also directed, wrote and produced the 2006 movie “Bella.”

I highly recommend you watch “Sound of Freedom” while it is still in your local movie theater.

Great movies, such as the “Sound of Freedom,” were meant and produced to be seen on movie theater large screens, not on television screens playing the movie’s DVD.

Grade: A

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