For Joseph Jenkins (Michael Rosander) life had always been lived in the fast lane--literally. As a drag racer life was always about speed, cars, and--most importantly--adrenaline. When a devastating car wreck leaves him paralyzed, however, will Joseph succumb to a life of self-pity and misery, or will he learn to walk, love, and live again? Adrenaline tells the story of a young street racer as he attempts to piece his life back together after having his world literally turned upside down.
This film has some very sweet themes throughout it, not the least of which being the importance of love. After his giant wreck, we see Joseph closed off completely from the outside world. In a cloud of self-pity and depression there was no way he was going to pull himself out. His paraplegic hospital roommate Elijah (Gregory Alan Williams), however, reaches out to the broken boy, encouraging him to see his past and his future with new perspective. In addition, Joseph’s physical therapist Josie Rigsby (Charlene Amoia) is not about to let him give up. She slowly helps him come to understand that the wheelchair is not the end, and he still has a future ahead of him. Adrenaline points out the importance of loving people even when they are difficult to love, and that love can transform a person’s outlook, possibilities, and future.
The second great theme in the movie Adrenaline is the need to have a purpose in your life. Eli tells Joseph at one point in the film that he needs to know what he is racing for. That although money, fame, adrenaline, and other earthly goods and feelings may last for awhile they will eventually fade and leave him just as empty as he was before. After his crash, Joseph feels that his life purpose--drag racing--is gone. He believes he will never have a life again, and because he has no purpose he is ready to give up. With Josie and Eli’s constant love and pressure not to give up, however, he soon realizes that life is not over when you think it might be. He realizes that his life still has purpose if he will only find it. Eli also points out the importance of having God in your purpose. He tells Joseph that without God, you will never be satisfied, even if you are living part of your purpose, because ultimately our purpose is to glorify God.
Throughout the movie Adrenaline the theme of healing is also woven throughout. Obviously physical healing after the car crash for the bashed, battered, and paralyzed Joseph, but also mental and spiritual healing. Joseph begins to learn that love is important. Through the love others show him, he is able to learn to love again. He learns to see that a car crash does not necessarily mean the end of a life. That he can walk and race again. He also heals spiritually with Eli’s encouragement and mentoring. At one point Joseph angrily asks how a God who takes a twelve year old boy’s father away could want to be part of his plan. Yet, as the film moves forward, we see him opening up and learning to love not only others, but God again. The story in Adrenaline is one full of healing and inspiration.
Adrenaline also promotes the idea of facing the challenge’s of life with great courage. After his car flips leaving him paralyzed, Joseph courageously attempts to overcome his physical setbacks with the help of his physical therapist Josie. In addition, he courageously enters the racetrack again, even after suffering a crash that could have cost him his life and did cost him much pain and suffering. His biggest test, and biggest example of courage in the film, is when he races once again against the racing bully and his biggest nemesis Jason Skynard (Anthony Reynolds)--the man he was racing against the night of the crash. The film Adrenaline promotes the ideas of courageously persevering through and facing fears and obstacles that stand in one’s way.
The film Adrenaline will encourage and inspire viewers of all ages with its themes of love, courage, perseverance, purpose, and healing. You will be challenged to not only love the difficult people in your life, but to look past their shortcomings and see their potential. You will be reminded of the importance of having a purpose in your life, to not only live for Netflix, Youtube, and ice cream, but to have a solid goal and vision for your life. You will also be challenged and reminded to constantly keep God in your purpose and life, and that the things life give you will not satisfy you forever. You will be inspired by Joseph’s story of healing, and perhaps discover healing for yourself. You will also be encouraged by his example of courage to face the obstacles, challenges, and fears life brings you with the same, “I will not let this beat me,” mentality. As a family you can discuss the fleeting satisfaction living only for yourself can bring, as well as how you can change someone’s life by simply loving and including them even when they do not want to be encouraged. All in all, Adrenaline will give you inspiration, encouragement, reminders, and conversation for weeks to come.
Adrenaline has not been rated by the Motion Picture Association of America, and may include violence and issues not suitable for younger viewers. This film did, however, receive the “Faith Friendly” award for ages twelve and up from the Dove Foundation. As always, it is recommend that parents preview all content to determine what is suitable for their children, but this film is considered appropriate for most older audiences.