The Golden Compass

I go to the movie theater on average about twice a year. I’m rather picky about what I will go to see. I saw all the Star Wars movies, the Lord of the Rings, and the Incredibles at the theater when they came out but I did not go out to watch the Spidermans, the Saw movies, or the Transformers. As a general rule I won’t even consider going out to watch a movie with a stupid name but I intend to make an exception in order to see The Golden Compass. I don’t hold out a lot of hope for the movie as an artistic work but I want to see what all the furor is about. Rabid Catholics and evangelicals are criticizing this movie for carrying a heavy anti-religious message so I want to see if story is done well.

The objection raised against this film’s anti-religious message reminded me of the arguments made from the other side with the release of Mel Gibson’s “Passion of the Christ.” I remember my brother telling me he would not go see the movie because he did not want to support Mel Gibson’s efforts to convert people. I told him I was immune to any proselytizing message and that I wanted to see the movie because I wanted to hear Aramaic actually spoken. My daughter, on the other hand, did not want to see it because she was afraid she would laugh out loud when Jesus was getting the beat down, but that’s a story for another day.

Anyway I thought the Passion was a reasonably well done movie (all controversy aside) and I hope the Golden Compass is too. Atheism deserves a fair shake at the box office and anyone who seeks to quash the message is just as un-American as people who want to suppress religion. In a free society ideas should be allowed to stand (or not) on their own. Public discourse and the fires of practical application make censorship unnecessary for all ideas that don’t involve crimes in some other respect. No one fears scrutiny more than he who hawks an inferior product.

Anyway I haven’t read Phillip Pullman’s works but I hope he can convey his message without being too preachy. A-theism is, by definition, a rejection of the concept of god (or, if you prefer, gawd, or de lawd), and I’m not sure a message of anti-something can come across as effectively as a message that is for something. I would much prefer to see a message that is pro-rational or an advocacy of science and reason. Be that as it may I will withhold judgment until I’ve actually seen the movie. I can only hope that this film does for atheism what Roseanne did for fat people.

On second thought, I take that back.

8 Responses to “The Golden Compass”

  1. mexi says:

    Oh hell yeah, I just saw the trailer. THE MOVIE HAS A MONKEY!!! I MIGHT HAVE TO BE THERE AT THE FIRST SHOWTIME ON FRIDAY!!!

  2. any movie with a monkey is worth $7.50

  3. R says:

    I am wanting to watch this as well.

  4. bob says:

    polar bears fighting James Bond.

  5. Scott says:

    Catholics and Evangelicals are up in arms about it? Two thumbs up from the Mexijew, then!

  6. Yollie says:

    We Catholics do not have RABIES!!

  7. mexi says:

    The rabid ones do.

  8. Vee says:

    I still can’t understand why religious groups get all stank over a MOVIE. If a kid is so easily swayed to turn against whatever religious beliefs their family instilled in them by a movie or book then we have greater things to worry about. It’s entertainment! If a kids wants to question religion than that will happen whether they watch this movie or Harry Potter movies, etc. It’s healthy to question life’s mysteries and any parent who doesn’t want their kid to question and figure out things for themselves is asking for trouble.

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