Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Religulous (2008)

I'm a pretty big fan of Bill Maher's HBO panel show, Real Time, and I genuinely think he is a funny and insightful guy, but as a “documentary” (it's really propaganda), “Religulous” is fairly pointless. I would be surprised if anyone with an even moderately different opinion than Maher's walked away from the theater feeling their views were challenged in any way. Maher's condescending mockery will never change the minds of the people whose beliefs are the butt of his jokes. In other words, the film basically preaches to his choir, and because of that, fails as a persuasive piece. It's doesn't help that the film tacks on a ridiculous doomsday montage in the finally 5 minutes thats supposed to scare us into thinking rationally (wrap your mind around that logic).

The most interesting aspect of the film, I thought, was the interviews that Maher conducts with his mother and sister (I believe) about their upbringing. It's pretty much the only time in the movie that Maher doesn't come off as an intellectual schoolyard bully.

All this considered, I didn't hate “Religulous” because, well, I'm one of the choir, but I recognize that the film really serves no purpose.

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