The Saratov Approach

Rated 3.0

In 1998, two Mormon missionaries in Russia (Corbin Allred, Maclain Nelson) are kidnapped and held for ransom. Based on the true story of Andrew Propst and Travis Tuttle, the movie has good acting and persuasive atmosphere (with Ukraine standing in for Saratov, Russia). Oddly enough, the Russian scenes are more convincing than some of the ones set in the United States, where even network newscasters reporting on the abduction sound more like Mormons than journalists. Writer-director Garrett Batty doesn't soft-pedal the faith, but he keeps preaching to a minimum, focusing more on the human drama. The only real drawback is that there isn't all that much of it: The two were kidnapped, then their hapless abductors neglected to follow up on their ransom demand, got tired of waiting and let them go after four days of captivity.