Private Project

The Son

A young man comes into millions of dollars and uses it to run away from home. When he stumbles upon a small town, the kindness of strangers helps him become a better man.

  • Luke Thomas Riether
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Drama, Family
  • Number of Pages:
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Language:
  • First-time Screenwriter:
  • Student Project:
Writer Biography - Luke Thomas Riether

This film is loosely based on the parable of the Prodigal Son and what really inspired me to write this, was from a spoken word poem that my dad and I wrote a few years back. In fact, this film really sheds light on two struggles I faced in real life. My dad and I never saw eye to eye on a lot of things. My dad was a pastor, and he spent more time devoted to his church than his own family.
Shortly after my parents divorced, I was only 17 and running in all the wrong places along with hanging out with the wrong crowd. I stopped speaking to my dad and for a long while; I didn’t see or speak to him. It wasn’t until I was 25 when God spoke to me while I was in class at Victory Bible College. What God said to me changed the course of my future. My dad and I made up and both my dad and I wrote this Spoken Word together. It was entitled The Son, just like the feature film. The other significance that reaches home to me is that I actually have a daughter named Rebecca.
I got married when I was 19 and got divorced around the time my dad and I made up. Since then, I have been battling custody. I have been fighting hard to see my daughter but my ex has refused, time and time again. I haven’t seen my daughter now in over 7 years but I continue to write to her. Unfortunately, there is a huge stack of letters sitting on the desk of our home because of the letters being returned undelivered. I have tried almost everything from court to phone calls to texting and letters none of which have worked. I know God has a big plan for my daughter’s life and I believe that I will be reunited with her again one day.
A father’s hope never stops. It is so easy for us to look behind us at all the hurt, shame, fear, and regrets that we have faced in life, but the hard thing to do is to lift our heads and look forward. When you look forward instead of back, you will see the true beauty that lies ahead. It is like what David once said; He prepares a table in the presence of my enemies.

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Writer Statement

Idlewild plans to specialize in producing in-house inspirational & emotionally moving films with roots in Biblical concepts. The goal of the content is to inspire & create a new understanding of the inspirational genre by removing stereotypical tropes that saturate the market & alienate non-religious viewers. We want to move people emotionally by the actual storyline and not bury it in easy-to-write storylines full of directly quoted bible verses, unrealistic plot points, and cheesy dialogue.
I also want to avoid labeling it ‘faith based’ because almost none of the characters start with faith, and not all of them have it at the end of it all because that’s just reality. We want to avoid polishing the dirt of life by representing realistic lifestyles that branch into larger-than-life tropes.
I have seen the popularity and beauty in these types of films that have these same qualities and believe in the success of these films after seeing them myself.
I believe movies can change the course of history, change minds, change hearts, change lives by offering one glimmer of hope inside the small world of our characters.