3 Things You Should Know about Sight, Angel Studios’ Inspiring New Film

Michael Foust

Crosswalk Headlines Contributor
Published May 28, 2024
3 Things You Should Know about Sight, Angel Studios’ Inspiring New Film

Ming is a young Chinese boy with a big smile and big dreams. He wants to be a doctor.

Fortunately for Ming, he has parents who support and encourage him. They prioritize education. They give him a microscope. They instill in him the importance of hard work.

Unfortunately for Ming, he is growing up during the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), a dark period in Chinese history when schools were closed, books were burned, and education was seen as counter to the Communist cause.

"There is no longer any need for school," a young soldier tells Ming the day his elementary campus is shuttered.

"We need strong youth like you to join us," the soldier adds.

Nearly overnight, Ming's dreams are dashed. Instead of pursuing a career he loves, he is forced to participate in a movement he fundamentally opposes. Even worse: The schooling he desperately needs to become a doctor is no longer accessible.

Is there any hope in Ming's future?

The new Angel Studios movie Sight (PG-13) tells the story of Ming, who overcomes all odds to chase his dream. Here are three things you should know about it:

Photo credit: ©Angel Studios; used with permission.

Sight Angel Studios movie

1. It's Based on an Incredible True Story

Sight is based on the inspiring real-life story of Ming Wang, who outlasted the Cultural Revolution and moved to the United States to earn his medical degree. There, in the U.S., Wang became a world-renowned laser eye surgeon and pioneered the amniotic membrane contact lens, which is spotlighted in the film and can help restore sight to some patients who are blind. The film smartly employs flashbacks to switch between his childhood and adult years when he was developing the technique. The plot is based on Wang's autobiography, From Darkness to Sight, which, like the film, spotlights his conversion to Christianity.

Angel Studios, the same studio that released the 2023 blockbuster Sound of Freedom, is releasing Sight.

Oscar nominee Greg Kinnear (As Good as It Gets; You've Got Mail) portrays Wang's associate, while Ben Wang -- who is in the upcoming Karate Kid movie -- plays a young Ming Wang. Terry Chen, an actor known for his roles in Marvel and DC series, portrays the older Ming Wang. Director Andrew Hyatt, who was behind the 2023 hit movie The Blind and the 2018 biblical film Paul, Apostle of Christ, helmed Sight.

Colton Dixon's upbeat tune, Rest of My Life, leaves you feeling energized as the credits roll.

Photo credit: ©Angel Studios; used with permission.

Sight Angel Studios Movie

2. It Teaches Us about Tragedy, Determination, and Faith

Wang's early life was full of trials. We watch as his parents struggle to find enough money for food. (His father, sitting at the dinner table, gives Wang a portion of his rice.) We watch as soldiers order Wang and his classmates to toss their books into a fire. We even watch as Wang, then a young teen, falls in love with a young girl, only to see her kidnapped by revolutionists. (He never sees her again.)

Wang told Crosswalk Headlines he nearly lost all hope.

"It was devastating," he said. "Fortunately, with the help of my parents, I was able to fight through that period."

The film takes a turn when the government ends the Cultural Revolution and re-opens schools. Wang -- now an older teen with little education -- is given a sliver of hope, but only if he can pass a key exam.

The film depicts Wang as being driven to success by two tragedies: 1) the kidnapping of Lili -- he harbors guilt for her capture -- and 2) the medical case of a young Indian girl named Kajal, who was born with sight but was blinded by her stepmother when the latter poured acid into the youngster's eyes. (Street beggars like Kajal make more money when they are blind, Wang is told.)

Wang, now a famous doctor in the film, spends countless hours at the office -- and even sleeps there a few nights -- as he searches for a medical remedy to Kajal's vision loss. (She "doesn't deserve to suffer," he says.

Photo credit: ©Angel Studios; used with permission.

Sight Movie Angel Studios

3. It Teaches Us about Perspective

Ming Wang is a heroic doctor in Sight, but he's no miracle worker. Smartly, the film depicts stories of success and stories of failure.

In the movie's final moments, his revolutionary technique brings sight to one young girl but fails on another girl who is roughly the same age. Incredibly, though, the latter girl rediscovers her joy in life despite her lack of vision. She laughs. She plays with friends. She's no different than her peers. ("She has moved beyond the tragedy of her past and embraces the present with happiness and joy and love," a nun says.)

Sight is a film about the gift of vision. It's also a film about perspective.

"We learn more from our failures," Wang told Crosswalk Headlines. "I [didn't] want the movie to be just about exaltation of good news and good things, because that's not reality."

He wants viewers to ask: What can I learn from life's trials?

"There's more to life than what we see," Wang said. That includes the spiritual realm. In Sight, Wang experiences a Romans 8:28-type moment, as the tragedies of his childhood form within him a resolve to help others. "The present is made possible by the past," we hear throughout the film.

Sight is an inspiring drama that challenges viewers to see beyond their immediate circumstances. It also urges viewers to consider what lies beyond the virtual realm.

As Wang's life demonstrates, our past experiences, no matter how painful, can become the crucible in which our greatest strengths are forged.

Sight is rated PG-13 for violence and thematic material. The film contains no coarse language or sexuality. Violent material includes: a soldier punches a teacher and slaps a boy. Soldiers push an elderly man in a wheelchair over and then kick him.

Photo credit: ©Angel Studios; used with permission.

Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.

Originally published Wednesday, 29 May 2024.