Alone yet Not Alone
|Alone yet Not Alone|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Ray Bengston|
George D. Escobar
|Produced by||Barbara Divisek|
George D. Escobar
Cynthia Garcia Walker
|Screenplay by||James Richards|
George D. Escobar
|Based on||Alone Yet Not Alone|
by Tracy Leininger Craven
|Music by||William Ross|
|Edited by||M. Scott Smith|
|Distributed by||Enthuse Entertainment|
Alone yet Not Alone is a 2013 American historical adventure drama film directed by Ray Bengston and co-directed by George D. Escobar (Advent Film Group), starring Kelly Greyson, Jenn Gotzon, and Clay Walker. The film gets its title from the German hymn "Allein, und doch nicht ganz allein" which the Leininger family frequently sang together, and is based on Tracy Leininger Craven's novel of the same name and the true story of Barbara and Regina Leininger, who were forcibly taken from their Pennsylvanian German immigrant family's home by the Delaware Indians in the 1755 Penn's Creek Massacre during the French and Indian War. The film was partially funded by the conservative billionaire James Leininger.
The film is frequently labeled as a Christian movie.[better source needed] Alone yet Not Alone also received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 2013 for its title song, "Alone yet Not Alone", though the nomination was rescinded two weeks later.
During the French and Indian War, a German family celebrates their harvest in the United States on a plantation of their own when meanwhile, the British Army is coping with life when the Indians, willingly offering to join the French, are excused by General Braddock. General Braddock firmly states that "no savage shall ever inherit the land", causing the Indians to join forces with the French instead.
Meanwhile, the German family is made up of Barbara, Regina, John, Fritz, and Christian, and Papa and Mama Leininger. They are all enjoying their lives when one day, the Indians start making advances towards their home, suspecting a raid. After two of the brothers and Mama Leininger depart their home for safety, the remaining four Leiningers are attacked by two Indians. The two men are killed, and Barbara and Regina are kidnapped by the Indians. In the meantime, at the Governor's Mansion in Philadelphia, Captain Armstrong informs the Governor of savage Indian-related murders and scalpings. However, the Governor quickly dismisses it because of his continual stress.
Barbara attempts to escape by riding a horse, but is struck by a tree branch and again captured and threatened with execution. Still, the Governor refuses Captain Armstrong and Benjamin Franklin with their consistent efforts to free the captives.
During the Indians' surprising return to Fort Duquesne, Barbara and Regina meet up with a few other kidnapped children. In the meantime, Congress has had trouble making a decision, until the Governor eventually orders an attack/raid on the Indians' territory. The raid, however, costs many of the soldiers' lives in the process, and one woman who attempts to escape is later executed in a mercy killing fashion. Barbara and Regina are horrified at the sight of the woman's death, because the woman protected the two children from danger.
The next day, Barbara notices Galasko, a strong Indian warrior, crowning a horn with a scalp, which has the appearance and embodiment of her Papa's scalp from the house raid. Regina is forced into working with an Indian woman who treats her very harshly and only accepts character traits of hard work.
Several years later, Barbara, now a teenager, soon finds out that Marie, another girl and two other boys have been planning an escape when she meets with them at a waterfall. Afterwards, Galasko asks Barbara ("Susquehanna" in Indian) to marry him, and Marie questions this, because the marriage ceremony will be in three days, interrupting their escape plans. Barbara decides to join Marie and the boys, Owen and David, in the escape when Galasko hands her her mother's brooch.
That night, Barbara, Marie, Owen, and David escape together. However, they are knowingly hunted down by the strongest Indian in the family, Hannawoa, Galasko's brother. The four realize they must cross a river to get away, but as they do, they shoot and wound a bear, which David attempts to overthrow, only to be slashed badly by its claw. They all realize that Hannawoa might find their location from hearing the gunshot. Meanwhile, Galasko finds out about Barbara's betrayal and tries to look for her, with help from Hannawoa. Angry with his brother, Hannawoa murders Galasko with an axe. He angrily takes Galasko's two weapons, a rifle and another axe.
At Fort Pitt, Pennsylvania, meanwhile, several British soldiers guarding their camp notice the four kids yelling for help. However, they mistake it for an Indian ambush and inform them that they will pick them up the next morning. Hannawoa appears, and runs hysterically towards the fort with his weapons ready. The British are already prepared, and attack Hannawoa, with some getting killed by him in the process. Hannawoa is shot once, then tries to approach Barbara, but she pulls a dead soldier's gun and shoots him dead, while another soldier stabs him with a bayonet to make sure Hannawoa is really dead. Finally, after 200 miles of running to escape the Delaware Tribe, Barbara, Marie, and the others reunite.
One month later, Barbara reunites with her mother and family, saying her goodbyes to Owen and David, who are joining the Pennsylvania militia. Her mother notices that Regina is missing, and they seek out to find her. Years later, on Christmas Eve, a pastor informs the whole family, including Barbara and her new husband Fritz, that the Indians' captives have arrived at Fort Carlisle. Hearing this, and believing Regina may be one of them, the family immediately reports to the fort after dinnertime. At the fort, Barbara and Marie are informed by Owen that David had been killed at the Battle of Bushy Run. The family at first does not find Regina, but when Barbara's mother sings a poem that Regina and Barbara would sing together, called "Alone Yet Not Alone", Regina begins muttering the poem, and realizes her mother is there. Regina runs to her mother and Barbara, and the family is whole once more.
As the credits roll, we find out that the Delaware Tribes were scattered across the country when defeated, the German pastor is known as the patriarch of the Lutheran Church, and that Regina, Barbara and their mother rest next to each other in the Christ Lutheran Church Cemetery in Pennsylvania.
- Kelly Greyson as Barbara Leininger
- Jenn Gotzon as Lydia
- Clay Walker as Fritz
- Justin Tully as young Fritz
- Joanie Stewart as Mama
- Robert Pierce as Papa
- Ozzie Torres as Galasko
- Tony Wade as Hannawoa
- Joseph Gray as John
- Victoria Emmons as Marie
- Kelly Devens as young Marie
- Brett Harris as Owen
- Ian Nelson as young Owen
- John Telfer as David
- Joshua Hunter Magers as young David
- Josh Murray as George Washington
- Barry K. Bedwell as Benjamin Franklin
The film was given a limited release on September 27, 2013, in nine markets and grossed $125,775 in its opening weekend. By the end of its three-week run on October 11, Alone yet Not Alone had grossed $133,546 in the domestic box office, with a respectable per screen average (combining theater ticket sales with Seatzy ticket sales) of $13,396. The film received a wider release on June 13, 2014.
Academy Awards controversy
The title song was performed by well-known evangelical Christian author Joni Eareckson Tada and written by Bruce Broughton and Dennis Spiegel. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song at the 86th Academy Awards, but the nomination was rescinded on January 29, 2014, after the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences found that Broughton, a former governor and current executive committee member of the music branch of the Academy, had improperly contacted other branch members. "No matter how well-intentioned the communication, using one's position as a former governor and current executive committee member to personally promote one's own Oscar submission creates the appearance of an unfair advantage", said Cheryl Boone Isaacs, Academy President.
While not the first time in the history of the awards a nomination has been revoked, it is the first time the Academy has cited ethical grounds for doing so, and the first time it has done so to a scripted American-produced feature film. Broughton responded that there was a double standard in the industry, alleging that his actions of sending out "70 or so emails" was no different from Academy Awards president Cheryl Boone Isaacs' involvement in films such as The Artist and The King's Speech as an Academy governor. Not everyone agreed with the Academy's actions.
- "Alone Yet Not Alone (2013)". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. October 11, 2013. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
- Set Adrift | World Magazine
- 'Alone Yet Not Alone': Inside the Conservative Christian Movie the Oscars Ousted
- Breznican, Anthony (January 29, 2014). "Oscars kill Original Song nomination for 'Alone Yet Not Alone'". Entertainment Weekly.
- "Weekend Box Office Results for September 27-29". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. September 30, 2013. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
- Tracy, Kate (January 30, 2014). "Academy Disqualifies Joni Eareckson Tada's Oscar-Nominated Song from Christian Movie". Christianity Today.
- Scott Meslow, "Alone Yet Not Alone: The shady story behind 2014's most obscure Oscar nominee", The Week, January 17, 2014.
- Timothy Grey, "Oscar Rescinds 'Alone' Song Nomination", Variety, January 29, 2014.
- "Academy Rescinds Original Song Nomination For "Alone Yet Not Alone" | Oscars.org | Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences". Oscars.org. January 29, 2014. Retrieved December 8, 2016.
- Zeitchik, Stephen; Whipp, Glenn (January 31, 2014). "Voices rising amid 'Alone Yet Not Alone's' removal from Oscar running". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 31, 2014.
- Ma, Roger (February 3, 2014). "Oscar disqualified composer Bruce Broughton hits back with open letter". The Sydney Morning Herald.
- Zeitchik, Steven; Whipp, Glenn (January 31, 2014). "Voices rising amid 'Alone Yet Not Alone's' removal from Oscar running". LA Times.
- Feinberg, Scott. "Was Academy's Disqualification of Song Contender 'Alone Yet Not Alone' Justified? (Opinion)".