Afterlife expert takes issue with Hereafter movie

Clint Eastwood’s Hereafter Doesn’t Measure Up, Says Bestselling Author on the Afterlife

Even with an understated entrance into the box office, acclaimed director Clint Eastwood’s latest movie, “Hereafter” is holding ground with critics. Yet James L. Garlow, PhD, bestselling author and theologian, disagrees with them — and his reasons may surprise most.

“The glimpses of the hereafter in the movie were virtually non-existent” said Garlow, author of “Encountering Heaven and the Afterlife.” “This is where ‘Hereafter’ fails us all: It tells viewers nothing about the life after this one.”

And Garlow’s critique holds weight. For the last three years he has been studying the afterlife, the paranormal, and the supernatural, collecting stories, analyzing research, and observing society’s near-obsession with all of it. He has even published two books with his findings and the stories he’s encountered.

“There is overwhelming collective human experience about the afterlife — and there is much more to be known about it than most think,” he said, noting how Eastwood’s movie sidestepped the very topic its title promises.

With a culture preoccupied with the hereafter and a movie that doesn’t deliver, it raises a question: What can people really believe about the afterlife?

In his books, Garlow helps readers sort fact from fiction, explaining the afterlife in terms of heaven and hell. As a Christian and an apologist, he points people to the Bible for real answers. Yet he also gives readers the true stories of people he interviewed, letting readers make up their own minds.

“There is an afterlife,” said Garlow. “And on that point, the movie ‘Hereafter’ gets it right.”

About the Author:
James L. Garlow is the coauthor of “Heaven and the Afterlife,” “Encountering Heaven and the Afterlife,” and “Cracking Da Vinci’s Code,” with a half million copies in print. He is the senior pastor of Skyline Wesleyan Church in San Diego, chairman of Renewing American Leadership, based in Washington, DC, and a nationwide speaker. Jim has master’s degrees from Princeton Theological Seminary and Asbury Theological Seminary, and a PhD in historical theology from Drew University. He has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, FOX, and NBC. His daily radio commentary, The Garlow Perspective, can be heard on nearly 850 radio outlets. Jim and his wife are the parents of four children and live in San Diego, California. For more information, visit:

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