EXIT: The Appeal of Suicide (2017) Movie Script

(Ray Comfort)
The drive from LA
to Oceanside was amazing.
I've never seen so many
green hills in all my life.
I thought I was in Kentucky.
There's an ugly rumor going
around that I've been preaching
a prosperity message.
[audience laughing]
I don't know where it began,
but it's got to stop, okay?
Do you ever get depressed?
I do, yeah.
Do you ever get depressed?
All the time.
I will forever resent my parents
for bringing me
into this world.
Did you ever have
chronic depression?
I did.
And what caused that?
When I was 10 to 12 years old,
I was gang raped
by 3 men from my church.
From your church?
Yes, from church.
Did you change the church?
No, I stayed.
They weren't members
of your church?
They had snuck in and just
kind of left after a few years.
Do you ever get depressed?
What causes it?
I don't know,
apparently a chemical imbalance.
So, have they fixed it?
It just sort of hits you
in the face.
You wake up and you think
you're going to have a good day,
and then you're just
feeling heavy.
You feel like your
body's made out of lead.
It hurts to move.
And you can't explain it,
and that's what's so frustrating
about depression, because you
don't know where it comes from.
It's only when a celebrity
dies that the world is reminded
that they have an appointment.
Passing is much more common
than people think.
Every minute,
100 people die.
Every hour, 6,000.
Every day, 150,000.
Every year,
54 million human beings
kick the bucket.
They die.
It's kind of depressing
if you think about it.
And then there's the death
of actor and comedian
Robin Williams,
who committed suicide.
For many years, he suffered
from chronic depression
and the tragedy is that
he didn't know why
he was depressed.
In fact, the "New York Times"
and Mayo Clinic say nobody knows
why people get depressed.
Is suicide very big
in colleges?
Yeah, it's the second leading
cause of death
among college students.
Why do so many celebrities
kill themselves?
They don't always get the help
that they need because people
are judged, you know, when
they seek professional help.
Do you think depression
is a mental illness?
I do think it can lead
to a form of mental illness.
So, that makes it
really hard for them
if they're a celebrity to come
out publicly and say,
"I'm mentally ill,
because I'm depressed."
Yeah, it's not just them.
That's for everyone.
It could drive them
to suicide.
It could add to their depression
where everyone looks at them
kind of sideways and says,
"Hey, you got a mental illness."
Because it wasn't too long ago
that we had
derogatory names for buildings
that we kept the mentally ill
in, like the mad house
and the nut house.
And so, there's a tremendous
stigma for celebrities
that come out publicly
and say, "I get depressed.
I am therefore mentally ill."
I wanted to ask you very much
what you--how you found
speaking out and how it
made you feel.
It made me
very nervous at first.
For me, waking up every day
and feeling sad and going
on stage is something that is
very hard to describe.
There's a lot of shame
attached to mental illness.
You feel like
something's wrong with you.
What's alarming is that
the depression has resulted
in an epidemic of suicides.
Nearly half a million Americans
are taken to the hospital
every year because
of suicide attempts.
Back in 2013,
"Newsweek Magazine"
addressed the epidemic
and could give no reason
for the increase, saying
that it had nothing to do
with unemployment
and nothing to do with guns.
They said, "This year,
America is likely to reach
a grim milestone:
the 40,000th death by suicide,
the highest annual total
on record."
According to
the World Health Organization,
a massive 350 million people
suffer from depression.
Perhaps you could move
to Denmark,
listed by the United Nations
as the happiest country
in the world.
Before we make a decision
to move, listen to this.
You can say we are the happiest
country in the world.
I like to say we're
the least unhappy.
(female reporter)
The country has
the highest cancer rate
in the world.
Large portions of the population
also suffer from alcoholism
and depression.
And that's what's so frustrating
about depression,
because you don't know
where it comes from.
You know, you can't explain it.
Do you ever consider
I have, yeah.
I actually tried attempting it
a few times
when I was a teenager.
I'm 23 now.
Did you ever have
suicidal thoughts?
Yes, frequently.
Did you ever attempt
to commit suicide?
I did once.
What happened?
It was halfway through,
it's just like--I just realized
I didn't want to do it.
Do you ever
think about suicide?
What causes your
I think about a lot of stuff.
I overthink.
So, what do you
think about?
I don't know.
I dropped out of school.
I don't have my dad.
Do you ever
think about suicide?
I tried it before.
What did you do?
I took pills, I tried to,
like, shoot myself,
and I tried to hang myself.
Three different occasions?
Six different occasions.
No, I just don't think life
is generally worth living, so.
You ever consider suicide?
Yes, all the time.
Isn't that scary?
I suppose, but you get kind of
used to it after a while.
There was such an epidemic
that psychologists reclassified
depression as a mental disease,
and this paved the way
for antidepressants.
While many say that these have
been helpful in treating their
depression, antidepressants
remain controversial
because they sometimes come
with horrific side effects.
I don't look like
I usually look.
My hands shake real bad.
Medication, nothing
I can do about it.
And my face,
I feel like a balloon.
My face is all swollen
because the medication.
When Robin Williams was
interviewed by "The Guardian,"
they asked him if the death
of Christopher Reeve,
his good friend, was influential
in turning him back to alcohol.
Listen to what he said.
He said, "No, it's
more selfish than that.
It's just literally being
afraid, and you think,
oh, this will ease the fear.
And it doesn't."
And he was asked what he
was afraid of,
and this is what he said.
It's just a general
all-around arggghhh.
It's fearfulness and anxiety."
Notice his words.
He said, "It's more selfish
than that."
What did he mean?
Well, when a friend dies,
it's terribly sad,
but when you die,
it's terrifying.
The Bible says this, that
every single human being is held
prisoner to the fear of death
all their lifetime.
It says, "Who through fear
of death have been living
all their lives as slaves
to constant dread."
That's the dread that we
all feel, like a [sighing]
and you can't explain it,
it's just like a horror.
And it seems to be irrational,
but if it is a fear of death,
then it becomes rational.
You're not mentally unstable.
There's something in you that
says, "Oh, I don't want to die."
That's normal.
That's sane to want to preserve
your most precious possession.
You have this really morbid fear
of death,
which I've had
my whole life.
And so, my husband and I spend
hours sitting, talking about it.
This is like from a child
you had it, didn't you?
Did you find that you'd be doing
something, you'd be happy,
and then it would almost
be ruined because then
you'd think about dying.
I mean, it was there.
I'm glad I found out
this is quite common.
I'm so pleased to meet
somebody else.
Yeah, that's
what I thought.
Somewhere around 5 or so,
I turned grumpier or sour.
I can only think, when I became
aware of my mortality,
I didn't like that idea.
What do you mean this ends?
You know, this is--this
doesn't go on like this?
No, it ends.
Once I realized that, I thought,
"Hey, you know, deal me out.
I don't want to play
in this game."
And I never was
the same after that.
I'm 78, I'm going to be 79
the end of the year,
and I think I've got
to keep going.
Before I retire, I die.
In "Joe Black," you played
a man
knowing he was going to die.
That's right.
Do you think about death?
Yeah, all the time,
really, but I don't dwell on it
in a morbid way.
But I was 8 years old
when my grandmother died.
Looking at my stamp collection,
and I'm, like, looking
at the stamps, and I had a bunch
of old American stamps
with pictures of presidents
on them.
And I'm like, "Wow,
all these guys are dead.
Grandma's dead.
My mom and dad are
going to be dead someday."
And then I'm like, "Oh,
I'm going to be dead someday."
But I do remember that being
an immensely impactful notion.
When my parents died,
I was sad, of course,
as I think many people would be,
but then right after that,
I was like, "Oh, man.
That means I'm on deck."
Well, what do you--
He keeps me...
What do you worry about?
I fear death.
(Stephen Colbert)
Okay, well,
maybe--we all die.
Maybe you'll go to heaven.
You'll die and go to heaven.
Okay, that's--
I need help.
What do you need?
I need to know
what to believe in!
Like what happens
when you die?
Yes, I don't want to be
a bag of dust.
And I can't stand the thought
of nonexistence.
See, I already have existence.
I don't--I accept it.
(Neil deGrasse Tyson)
All right, it is true.
We fear death because we
are born knowing only life.
I get that.
However, I take another
view, because I've been asked.
If you could live forever,
would you?
Bruce Springsteen battled
what he called
terrifying depression
for most of his life.
Just after two of his
band members died, he ended up
on a beach by himself, in tears,
weeping profusely.
"Time Magazine" said,
"When he was in his early 60s,
his depression and anxiety
redoubled to the point where
he came to understand
the appeal of suicide."
It's like this thing
that engulfs you.
I got to where I didn't
want to get out of bed.
It's like a nightmare,
you know?
You don't wake up from.
You can't wake up.
You're just waiting
for it to be over.
And you know that you're going
to have a day that comes
where you feel fine, but it's
just waiting for that period.
You feel like you're imprisoned
by all of this sadness.
I actually heard a quote from
somebody that has depression.
It says, "Depression wasn't
an endless gray sky,
it was no sky at all."
And I really feel like
that is true.
It's just--there is no sky,
and you're waiting
for something to happen.
You're waiting for some color.
One of the times I overdosed
on ibuprofen,
I actually really messed
up my internal organs.
So, why did you do that?
I just felt like I couldn't
do it anymore.
It was--the thought
of continuing life
was just so unbearable.
I didn't really want
to see tomorrow.
My aunt shot herself.
Why did she kill herself?
Well, one of the things she
wrote in her suicide note was
that she brushed her teeth,
you know, I don't remember
how many times, and she
couldn't bear to do it again.
You're kind of like, I'm just
going to do this over and over.
Life if futile.
Yeah, what's the point?
So, when you say you think
about suicide,
are you deadly serious?
Now, what method have
you been thinking about?
I guess making plans,
but not actually doing it.
What sort of plans?
I guess plans of ways
you can do it.
Give me some for instances.
Oh, for instance,
I've researched
about the fastest ways, I guess,
or what's going to hurt
more, what's not, what takes
longer, stuff like that.
You don't want to do this.
Your life is very precious,
don't you realize that?
I guess.
Would you sell one of your
eyes for $1 million?
Would you sell both
for $10 million?
Can you see how precious
your eyes are to you?
You wouldn't sell your
eyes for $100 million.
So, how much more is
that life worth
that looks out those windows?
You don't want to throw it
away with a shot to the head.
You shouldn't even think
about that.
And these attempted suicides,
if you meant it,
you would have jumped
off a cliff.
No one would've stopped you.
There's something in you that
says, "I don't want to die."
That's your
God-given will to live.
Man, listen to it.
I don't want to die.
It's an instinct
that God's given you.
The Bible says he's created
eternity in your heart.
Are you afraid of dying?
I think everybody's
kind of afraid of dying
once you think it's actually
happening to you.
Are you afraid of dying?
Do you think about it much?
Sometimes, yeah, I do.
Do you find it depressing?
Are you afraid of dying?
Do you ever think about it?
Think about dying?
Do you believe
in God's existence?
No, not really, actually.
I'm not afraid of dying.
Are you afraid of dying?
I think to a degree.
I don't really want to, like,
focus on--I know it's out there,
and I know it's possible, and I
know it's going to happen,
but I think if I was to sit
there and really dwell on it,
yeah, it can really bring out
some scary feelings.
Everything you love is
going to be ripped from you
by this thing that
nobody talks about.
It's like an elephant in
the room that no one talks
about and it's going to stomp
on all of us,
and that's depressing
if you think about it.
Now, are you afraid of dying?
Do you ever think
about your own death?
Does it scare you?
Death doesn't scare
you at all?
I think it scares
Everyone thinks about death,
and nobody wants to die.
Nobody in his right mind.
I mean, they're not listening
to that cry in their heart
that says, "Oh, I don't
want to die, I want to live."
And there's something in you
that says, "I want to live."
That's God-given.
Do you believe
in God's existence?
Do you believe
in God's existence?
Yeah, I do.
There is no God,
so there is no Judgment Day.
So, when I die,
you know what happens?
It's over.
Do you believe
in God's existence?
I do.
I really do.
That's kind of what kept
me alive in high school.
Have you been born again?
I don't know if I can say
that I've been born again.
I'd like to.
Do you have any faith?
What do you have faith in?
In God.
Are you a Christian?
No, I'm a Catholic.
Are you a Christian?
Yeah, I would say so, but I
don't really go to church, so.
Have you been born again?
Born again?
Yeah, that's when you
become a Christian.
Oh, then no.
Are you a good person?
Are you going to heaven
when you die?
I don't think
there is a heaven.
So, you think
Jesus was lying?
Yeah, He said there's a heaven
and there's a hell
and there's a God
that's just and holy,
and you have to face Him
on Judgment Day.
He said there's
a very real hell.
So, are you a good person?
You've broken
the commandments?
Which ones have you broken?
Most likely all of them.
You've lied and stolen?
Used God's name in vain?
Had sex out of marriage?
You know, the Bible says
even if you look with lust,
you commit adultery
in your heart.
And the Scriptures say,
"He that hates his brother
is a murderer."
What's your attitude
toward your father?
He's a [bleep].
I don't like him.
Why don't you like him?
Because he left.
Do you think that could be
the root of your depression?
Most likely.
I have a lot of hate
towards him.
I don't hate a lot of people,
but I hate him.
So, what's that
doing to him?
I don't know,
nothing probably.
It's doing nothing,
but it's killing you.
Yeah, true.
When you hate your father,
you're not only dishonoring
your father, but you're
committing murder in your heart.
So, if God judges you
by the Ten Commandments,
we looked at about
six then,
do you think you'd be
innocent or guilty?
Would you go
to heaven or hell?
Have you ever looked
at a woman with lust?
Jesus said when you do that,
you commit adultery in your
heart, ever done that?
Have you ever used
God's name in vain?
Jocelyn, I'm not judging
you, but you've just told me
you're a lying, thieving,
blasphemous adulterer at heart,
and a fornicator, and you have
to face God on Judgment Day.
If he judges you
by the Ten Commandments,
we've looked at five of them,
or four of them,
do you think you'd be
innocent or guilty?
I think that I would be okay,
because I know that all sins
equal the same thing,
and I know that if you ask
for His forgiveness,
He'll give it to you.
You sure of that?
I'm positive of that.
Would you bet
your life on it?
Yeah, why not?
You are,
and you're going to lose it,
because the Bible says
that's not true.
You can stand in front
of the judge,
and you've committed
a terrible crime,
and say,
"Judge, please forgive me,"
he's not going to let you
walk out.
And God's far more just
than a judge.
He just won't forgive
because you ask Him to.
There has to be
a payment for your sins.
So, if God judges you
by the Ten Commandments,
we've looked at six of them,
on Judgment Day,
do you think
you'd be innocent or guilty?
Oh, I would be guilty
by all means.
Heaven or hell?
Definitely hell
if we're talking about
the Ten Commandments.
If you're in court,
even though you're guilty,
if someone pays your fine,
the judge can let you go.
He can be just and do that which
is right and still let you go.
He can say,
"Yeah, this guy's guilty,
but someone's paid his fine.
He's out of here."
Well, when Jesus was
on the cross, He cried out,
"It is finished!"
In other words,
the debt has been paid.
And then he rose from the dead
and defeated death,
and what you've got to do
is repent and trust in Him
like you trust a parachute.
The minute you do that, God
will forgive every secret sin,
every open sin you've ever
committed and grant you
the gift of everlasting life.
He'll let you live, He will
dismiss your court case,
commute your death sentence,
because He's rich in mercy.
So, please think
about this, okay?
For sure.
Okay, so here's
a quick summation.
If you died today and God
gave you justice,
you'd end up in hell.
There are two things you
have to do to be saved.
You've got to repent and put
your faith in Jesus,
be born again.
When do you think
you'll do that?
Right now.
You serious?
Would you be okay
with me praying with you?
Does this all make sense?
It's making sense, yes.
So, if you were to die today
and God gave you justice,
you'd end up in hell.
There are two things you
have to do to be saved.
You've got to repent
and trust in Jesus.
When are you going to do that?
Well, it's not something
I can--I don't feel like
I can do overnight, but I
want to start exploring.
I really do.
Let me say this.
You're on the edge of a plane.
You're going to jump any second,
and I say, "Here's a parachute.
When you
going to put it on?"
Well, that's something
I'm going to explore
and think about.
When you use that analogy it
does sound really bad and silly.
Don't put this off.
You can put off your wedding.
You can put off your--
so many things in life,
but don't put off your
eternal salvation.
The Bible says,
"Today, if you hear His voice,
don't harden your heart."
And then think of how
earnestly I'm talking to you.
Why am I talking like this?
It's only because I care,
no other reason, okay?
So, you're going to more
than think about this?
Are you going to get right
with God, like, today?
Don't feel pressured by me.
You are?
Now, do you have a Bible?
I do.
When did you last read it?
It's been a very long time.
Gohei, you've just told me
you're a lying thief,
a blasphemer,
and an adulterer at heart.
So, hey, hang on.
You know what?
I don't know what created
everything, and I don't care.
Yeah, but when you're going
to do is leave yourself
in futility and in death,
when the only answer
to your dilemma is the God
that gave you life.
There are times when we all
get down and depressed,
but the Scriptures say that even
when another Christian dies,
we're sorrowful, but we
don't sorrow as others
who have no hope.
So, what's the difference
between a Christian
and a non-Christian when
it comes to death?
Well, let me give you
an analogy.
You're standing on a plane,
on the edge of a plane,
10,000 feet up.
You're going to jump
without a parachute.
Are you scared?
Oh yes, terrified.
But if I gave you a parachute,
would that change things?
You'd say, "Oh, I'm saved.
I'm saved," and you'd grip that
parachute as your very life.
And so, you have
the non-Christian,
the person without faith,
facing death.
That fear will be
without control.
But when the Christian passes
through death, when I have
my day, the biggest day
in my life, my fear will be
in direct relation to how much
faith I have in the Savior.
Think of "Pilgrim's Progress,"
that wonderful allegory,
where Christian had the same
experience that I had.
He realized,
as a young married man,
that he was
in the city of destruction,
and he began crying
out, "Life, life, eternal life."
He saw an evangelist.
The evangelist said,
"Head for that light."
He came to the cross,
realized his sin,
saw that God had provided
the Lamb
to take away
the sin of the world,
and his burden of sin
fell off his back.
He found everlasting life and he
began walking the straight
and narrow with his
friend Hopeful.
They got off track and met
a man called Giant Despair.
What a great terminology
for depression.
And he put them
into Doubting Castle,
and he beat them to a pulp
and said, "You better
commit suicide before I come
back and kill you."
And Christian put his hand on
his breast, pulled out a key.
He said, "What a fool I am.
This is the key of promise,
and it'll unlock the door
of Doubting Castle."
And so, when you and I are on
the straight and narrow,
we begin doubting the promises
of God, we will have immediate
despair, depression.
And the only answer
is to believe
the promises of God,
just have faith in God.
It's in your own heart.
I can't believe for you.
Your mom and dad or friends
can't have faith for you.
It's you that has to take
the key of promise
out of your own breast
and believe God's promises.
And we insult him when we have
doubt in our heart and we get
into Doubting Castle, and there
is Giant Despair to torment us
and whisper about
depression and suicide.
Let me see
if I can illustrate to you
the power of faith,
how incredible it is.
Let's say you're
in financial difficulty.
You're going to lose your
house and your family are going
to end up on the street, and you
just didn't know what to do,
and you're worried sick,
and you're depressed about it.
The bank's going to foreclose
tomorrow at noon.
And I hear about it, and I give
you a call and say, "Hey, Sarah,
we're all friends and I
heard about your plight.
I'm going to give you
$500,000 as a gift.
I came into an inheritance.
My father was very rich
and left me with literally
millions of dollars,
so I can do this.
And I'll meet you outside
the bank tomorrow at noon
and give you the $500,000."
You have a choice.
If you believe me, you can say,
"Whoa, no more depression.
I'm going to keep the house.
We're not going to end
up on the street."
Faith will give you joy and
peace the moment you believe.
If you don't believe
and say,
"I don't know if you're going
to keep your word,"
you're going to be stuck
with your depression.
You're going to be stuck with
your fear, and your worry,
and your concern.
It's important to remember
that when someone is born again,
when their sins are forgiven and
they put their faith in Christ,
they believe God's promises,
and the Bible says they can have
joy and peace in believing.
A young man went
to the Golden Gate Bridge
in San Francisco
to kill himself.
And as he stood on that
high bridge about to jump,
he heard voices.
It was screaming in my head,
"You must die.
You must die now.
Jump now."
And he jumped.
And the police said they had
picked up dozens of bodies
from San Francisco Harbor,
and his was the first to live.
The millisecond my hands
left the rail,
it was an instant regret.
And I remember thinking,
"No one's going to know
that I didn't want to die."
There's a bridge in China
where over 2,000 people
have taken their lives.
They've committed suicide.
However, one man named
Chen Si faithfully patrolled
that bridge on a little
motor scooter for 13 years.
And when he saw someone about to
jump, he would sneak up on them,
grab them, and hold them, and he
would take them to an apartment.
In that 13 years,
he saved 321 lives.
Emeal Zwayne is
the president of our ministry.
Where are these two going
to go if I pull the trigger?
He's also
the executive producer
of our films and our
award-winning television program
that airs in over 190 countries,
hosted by Kirk Cameron
and myself.
If you're watching this movie
right now and you've battled
with suicidal tendencies over
the course of your lifetime,
to any degree, I want you
to know that
as the executive producer
of this film, I personally
understand the ravages of that
battle firsthand.
When I was 4 years old,
my favorite uncle that
I was named after
committed suicide by shooting
himself in the head.
I'm sure you can imagine
how negatively impacted
I was by that as a little boy.
And as I began to grow,
when I was dealing with
difficult circumstances or
I was fighting depression,
I would think about my uncle
and what he did,
and I would often consider
committing suicide myself.
As I began to advance
in my teen years,
I made some terrible,
terrible decisions,
and before I had turned 16,
I had already become a very
distressed young man.
I was kicked out
of two high schools.
I had become a gang member
with the Crips.
And finally, one day it all came
to a head when I attempted
to commit suicide in front
of my own family.
But shortly after that,
I heard the message
that you've been listening to
over the course of this movie,
the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
And as I repented and placed
my faith in Him,
God radically
transformed my life.
In the famous movie,
"It's a Wonderful Life,"
do you remember what
George Bailey did when
he was at the end of his rope
and thought that suicide
may have been his only
way of escape?
Dear Father in heaven,
show me the way.
I'm at the end of my rope.
Show me the way, O God.
After that, he was shown how
different things would have been
in the lives of others
if he was never born.
Today, as I look at my beautiful
wife, as I think about our
five wonderful children, as I
consider the amazing ministry
that I get the privilege
to serve millions of people
through all around the world,
I shudder to think of how
different things would have been
if I was successful
in my attempt to take
my life on that day.
If you're even slightly tempted
to commit suicide,
I want to urge you to reach out
to others for help.
But more importantly, I want
to plead with you to cry out
to the God who gave you life
and to let Him show you the way.
If you're struggling
with suicidal thoughts,
I encourage you to remember
three very important things.
Firstly, you have worth.
You're not a cosmic accident.
You're not here by chance.
The Bible says that God,
who is the essence of love,
formed you in your
mother's womb,
and that you are made
in His image.
You're unique and handcrafted
by the Creator,
and because of that,
your life has meaning.
No matter where you've been,
or what's happened,
or what you've done,
nothing can ever erase
the incredible value God
has placed on you
as His creation
and image-bearer.
Secondly, there is hope.
The Bible tells us that by
trusting in Jesus, we have
a living hope, a hope
that's an anchor for the soul.
If you don't know God
personally, you can through
genuine repentance
and faith in Jesus Christ.
Your sins
will be washed away.
His Spirit will come to live
within you,
and He'll never leave you
nor forsake you,
and you'll be given a new heart
with new desires.
Again, the Bible tells us
that God is love.
The meaning and purpose of your
life is to truly love God
and walk with him.
You can find healing,
forgiveness, and hope in Christ.
And thirdly, help is available.
Like a mold to the soul,
severe depression grows
in the cold dampness
of isolation.
Please open up,
reach out for support.
You can tell those closest
to you, confide in a parent,
relative, or a friend,
or school counselor, or find
a respected Christian doctor
or professional counselor.
Dragging a heavy load by
yourself can be overwhelming,
but if you let someone help you
carry your burden,
it becomes far lighter.
Or you could call a hotline.
You could call
the Suicide Prevention Lifeline
and talk with someone right now.
It's free, it's confidential,
and available 24/7.
You can call them
at 800-273-8255
or visit them online at
You can speak
with a local pastor.
If you don't attend a Christian
church, visit TheExitMovie.com
and click on the "Help" tab
to help you find a church
in your area.
Please, whatever you do,
oh please don't end your life.