Posts Tagged ‘Angels and Demons’

Well, be warned about wasting $10 to see this film.

Man, my fraternal juices were flowing when I saw this movie and knew this post was coming (shout out to my Ice Cold brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.).

Why? Because I get to harangue a Q-Dog. No, no, not the “Atomic Dog” brothers but rather Quetzalcoatl – the triune man, dog and lizard of the Mayans who is supposed to return to earth and create his “Age of Transition” on December 21, 2012. Yawn.

Apparently, director Roland Emmerich has decided this calendar snafu was yet another excuse to destroy the world.

You see, I’ve seen most of his post-apocalyptic flicks and whether his tool for global carnage has been a radioactive iguana (“Godzilla“), global warming gone terribly awry (“The Day After Tomorrow“) or hacked-off aliens (“Independence Day“), the scripts usually blow about as bad as a drunk in a breathalyzer test.

This – fancy effects and a cacophony of explosions aside – was no exception at all.

You would think with the star power this movie had, a decent script could have been in order. Danny Glover was the president, John Cusack was our hero and Woody Harrelson even makes a cameo as a radio host with the Mayan calendar on his studio wall.

But, not so much as seen by the one obvious sci-fi nerd who left the movie early in a flurry of disgust and cussing in Klingon, or something like that.

I had to stick it out. This 2.5 hour movie feels more like 6.5, and a brother had to pee. Can I say that?

So why the commitment? I heard the kerfuffle about Emmerich deciding to destroy every Christian faith-based artifact in the world and wanted to see that for myself. St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome and the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro were the first to go. Even a gaggle of priests gets smothered.

Poor St. Peter’s Basilica. First, the anti-matter bomb in “Angels & Demons” and now this disaster. Why do producers find Christians such an easy tag for their angst? And then it dawned on me… there’s nothing of Judaic, Hindu, Buddhist or Muslim relic being obliterated here. Why not?

(Spoiler alert) Even that cute Buddhist monk survives the flood over the Himalayas, but a priest can’t get any love!

Then I discovered why the protection over other relics, specifically Muslim. Fear.

“Well, I wanted to do that, I have to admit,” Emmerich says. “But my co-writer Harald said I will not have a fatwa on my head because of a movie. And he was right. … We have to all … in the Western world … think about this. You can actually … let … Christian symbols fall apart, but if you would do this with [an] Arab symbol, you would have … a fatwa, and that sounds a little bit like what the state of this world is. So it’s just something which I kind of didn’t [think] was [an] important element, anyway, in the film, so I kind of left it out.”

What the fatwa? Seriously? Muslims scare him so the Kaaba was off-limits but Christians are pansies so the Vatican was so getting crushed.

This is a man who makes no apologies for not being the biggest fan of organized religion; yet somehow Imams freak this dude out. Nice.

You would think an espoused atheist would show equality and express his vitriol for every religion, but no, once again it’s Christianity that gets the pass on etiquette. It’s okay to thrash what we love because there’s no fear of revolt. We just don’t do that.

Sure, it could be the whole “love thy neighbor” message, but I think it smacks more of apathy. It takes a lot to get Christians to unite under one banner. Call it abortion, politics or… well, that’s about it.

Do Christians as a whole picket abortion clinics? No, but the world thinks we do. Do Christians as a whole burn Harry Potter books like a scene from “Footloose”? No, but again we are lumped into that simpleton mentality as well. Many people claim to do these things in the name of Christianity, but really, it’s just their personal issues under the guise of their beliefs. And we all get blamed for it. Sigh.

I’m not calling for Christian extremism (there’s already enough of that). I’m just saying we need to learn what is worth begin disgusted about, and let God sort out the rest. So, allow this movie to be Hollywood existentialism and some sort of catharsis for Emmerich who needs to slay his own inner demons about Jesus.

As for me and my house, I would have rather put that $10 in the offering bucket where it will do some good than in this ballyhooed movie. I suggest you do the same. Bor. Ing.

 

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Hell HumorIn the world of crime fighting, you know there is more than way to catch the bad guy. At some time, even the most swarthy foes get stupid and get caught.

Evidently, this side of the Apocalypse, the same can be said for the Prince of the Power of the Air. That’s right, Wall Watchers. Your most hated adversary and mine, Satan. (Ba-dum-bum-ching).

Oh, you didn’t hear? Yeah, some dunderhead in Boulder, Colorado was convinced Ol’ Slewfoot was chillin’ in his garage, so said buffoon tried to smoke him… literally. By trapping the devil in his garage and uh, burning him to death?!

Meet Gary Lee Shestak, 48, who at a frenetic 2:30 a.m. scene was arrested with an ax and reeking of kerosene. Why?

A few hours after the 2:30 a.m. fire, Shestak approached a police detective and fire marshal with an ax, which he was carrying with the blade “pointed toward the ground but outward in the direction of police and firefighters,” according to [Boulder PD spokeswoman] Huntley. Detective Kipp Euler asked Shestak, “who was staring vacantly,” if he needed help, to which he replied: “Can you help me kill the person inside the garage?” Huntley said.

Detective Euler needs more than a commendation for this apprehension. Dude needs a medal and someone to check his pulse.

I would have lost it, crying like a schoolgirl and laughing completely in this guy’s face. But not this guy. Oh nooooo, he was as cool as the other side of the pillow.

After the suspect was subdued, Huntley said, he told Euler that he thought Satan was in the garage and was trying to kill him.

To which, I would have asked, “If I had an infernal being from the fiery pit after my tail, what makes me think a lighter and a bag of Kingsfords is going to deter the pursuit?”

I would pelted the demon with ice cubes, a bucket of water or just mean mugged him with my icy glare. But fire?!

And where was Satan’s comment in all this mess? Anyone care to ask him, “Um, sir? Why did you single out this fool? He watch too many episodes of “The Omen” and began to get cute?”

Whatever it was, the denizens of Boulder, Colorado can rest easy with this guy off the streets. Although Satan is still on the loose, maybe they can let that Jesus guy do his job and keep the neighborhood flame-resistant.

Rest easy, Colorado.

There’s an axiom in Latin that makes the unlearned think of taking a night out to the club:

Audio. Video. Disco.

Compliments to the Australian Herald

Compliments to the Australian Herald

Believe it or not, that’s not about some multimedia experience. It means, “I hear. I see. I learn.”

Well, in today’s fast-paced society hungry for a theological fix, most folk aren’t as concerned about church as they are viewing Jesus on TBN or Daystar, hearing him on a Hillsong CD or their sacred iPod or clicking a God clip on YouTube.

(Because, it seems most folk ain’t going to Tangle… just sayin’.)

Needless to say, there is a lot of hearing and seeing going on, but perhaps the learning could improve just a skosh.

Evidently, that report got back to the Holy See because Pope Benedict XVI it’s presumed the only dumb ones are the young ones… and where are they hanging out these days? Online.

First, it was their own search engine. And now, the Papacy has gone buck wild by creating its own Facebook page, Pope2You.net.

And since there are about one billion Catholics on earth, Il Papa figured it would be a great idea if they could all come to him for a change, including a holy YouTube page, sacred iPhone apps and a WikiCath page.

So, why all the tech geek in the Vatican? Ask the Catholic News Service:

It’s an effort to allow younger generations find a “simple, fresh site to work as a hub from which users can find some new ways the universal church is present in the digital world.”

Seeing how things have been iffy for priests to get online in the past years, it’s commendable that the Pope is cool with this effort.

But hey, as long as there’s a massive firewall, some beefed-up Norton antivirus or, at the very least, has hired Robert Langdon to help out with the new symbols Pope B16 will encounter.

You know, items not in his lexicon like “LOL,” “411,” “WTF” and of course “MSG” (and no, that’s not Chinese take out).

Huzzah. Hope this works because form what I have heard, seen and learned about the propensity for old dogs to attain new tricks is um, “2G2BT.”

Something weird happened on the way to the Vatican the other day… the Pope has decided to become a PR professional and a film critic.

If anyone remembers, Il Papa despised Ron Howard’s first foray into the Dan Brown fictional chronicles of Catholicism known as “The Da Vinci Code”. I mean, especially since it almost cost the Vatican billions thanks to a ridiculous law suit over branding rights.

But evidently, after a Rome premiere, B16 has mad love for Tom Hanks, his acting ability and considers the movie… wait for it… archangels singing from on high… “harmless.” Huh?!

I know! The Pope was illuminated by the Illuminati. Who’da thunk it?

L’Osservatore Romano ran a review and an editorial in Wednesday’s edition, critiquing the movie based on the Dan Brown best-selling novel of the same name. The newspaper wrote that the movie was “a gigantic and smart commercial operation” filled with “stereotyped characters.” The paper suggested moviegoers could make a game out of finding the many historical inaccuracies in the plot.

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So that’s a complement, right? Underhanded and convoluted. But a complement, nonetheless.

One question though, Holy Father: What happened to the paternal vitriol extolled about the first movie? You did hate it, so what gives?

“The theme is always the same in both novels: a sect versus the church, even though the parts of the good and the bad are distributed differently,” L’Osservatore wrote Wednesday. “This time, with ‘Angels & Demons,’ the church is on the side of the good guys.”

Who knows. Maybe Ron Howard’s PR campaign worked? Talk about a total turnaround. At first, Rome was caught up in a tornadic storm of anger, whizz and vinegar. And now, they are strolling down the Yellow Brick Road of ration and reason?

Man, what a difference a summer blockbuster makes. Angels and demons and Catholics… oh my!

People make too much, way too much out of movies.

It’s Hollywood, which I believe is slang for “complete and utter dystopian fiction.” That said, when these fudged storylines come out, some factions make believe this makebelieve is made real, if only people would believe it. (Anyone follow that?)

“The Exorcist” made me people scared not to go to church. “The Blair Witch Project” took the Internet by storm. And “1984” has some convinced it was not a movie, but a prophecy.

angels-and-demonsAnd then there was the “Da Vinci Code,” a book made into a movie that continued a global kerfuffle that Mary Magdalene somehow got her Messianic groove on. It was sacrilege. It was impious. And, it was hilarious. At least to most comfortable Christians, it should have been.

But to those who believe culture is as sacred as Christ, they lost their minds… and their salvation. Catholics were acting the fool and for good reason. The great thing is most protestants were driving the car most Catholic picketers were traveling in.

From the sanctuary to the monastery, angst was flooding the gates of the Vatican because of a decent movie and a book that was not-so-much.

Fast forward to the prequel sequel, “Angels & Demons.” See, Dan Brown wrote it after “Da Vinci Code” but Ron Howard decided to make it before Tom Hanks saves the world from the Knights Templar and moves on to the surreptitious, infamous and ubiqutious Illuminati.

Thanks to this byline article in HuffPo, which includes an open letter from William Donohue from the Catholic League and a certain director of “Angels & Demons,” Ron Howard stands up for his film… and himself:

Let me be clear: neither I nor Angels & Demons are anti-Catholic. And let me be a little controversial: I believe Catholics, including most in the hierarchy of the Church, will enjoy the movie for what it is: an exciting mystery, set in the awe-inspiring beauty of Rome. After all, in Angels & Demons, Professor Robert Langdon teams up with the Catholic Church to thwart a vicious attack against the Vatican. What, exactly, is anti-Catholic about that?

In other words (if you’ll allow me to paraphrase):

“It’s a movie, people! I’m Ron Howard… and you’re not. So enjoy your 15 minutes, because when this flick opens, I’ll be in Puerto Vallarta collecting a tan… and a check. Peace.”

There have been rumors of the Vatican blocking Howard filming this movie in Rome (no, really). There are already critics claiming this sequel prequel is more convoluted than the first. Regardless, there’s a lot out there that will outweigh the naysayers and cause this movie to rocket to #1 in movie billings.

That is, until Michael Bay sets religion on its ear and brings “Transformers 2” to town. And that make believe is very real.