Prayers for Bobby directed by Russell Mulcahy centres around the life and experiences of the Griffith family in northern California. The mother, Mary (Sigourney Weaver), is a devout member of the Presbyterian Church, who is challenged when her son Bobby (Ryan Kelley) is revealed to be gay. Mary tries to coerce Bobby to pray more and seek a cure for his homosexuality, and also takes him to a psychiatrist in hopes of a change. Ultimately this just causes him to be more withdrawn, although he initially tries to do everything that his mother asks of him, before finally moving away to Portland.
Although he finds a loving boyfriend whose family also supports him, Bobby still can’t shake the feelings of having failed his mother in some way, and finally decides to take his own life by jumping off of a freeway overpass. This causes Mary to rethink her ways, re-reading scripture to look for answers. She finds support in a group of parents and family of LGBT children, and decides that she had been wrong all along. She slowly transforms into a gay rights advocate, and even joins a gay rights parade in San Francisco, deciding that it’s important to honour the legacy of her son.
“Sigourney Weaver’s TV movie debut proves worth the wait, as Lifetime’s fact-based Prayers for Bobby revisits ground similar to that broken nearly 25 years ago by the AIDS-themed “An Early Frost” and — thanks to enduring religious-based bigotry toward gays — still feels fresh and poignant.”
— Brian Lowry, Variety
Did You Know?
Sigourney Weaver was awarded the Trevor Life award in 2008 for her work in Prayers for Bobby and her dedication to supporting LGBT rights. This award comes from The Trevor Project, which was established in 1998 after the creators of the short film Trevor, about a 13 year-old gay boy who attempts to take his own life, realized that many viewers might have the same problem. They tried to find some sort of hotline program they could include in the film, but found there was none, leading them to decide to set it up themselves. Review our Gay Themed Films Here
All pictures reproduced courtesy of Sonar Entertainment