Thursday, December 20, 2007

Swiss Guards confiscate Golden Compass

No, no, that didn't happen. But the Crimbo wars, fought so ferociously in the US, including on the silver screen, now have their own ridiculous miniature British equivalent over the kid's adventure movie The Golden Compass. This time it's l'Osservatore Romano (the Vatican's official mouthpiece) doing the bidding by branding the film as "un-Christian", although how many Hail Marys it costs if you go and see it anyway isn't mentioned (most unhelpful). The American Christian public has little to fear: they had already been warned on Faux Noise by Christian gamblin' man Ralph Reed that their broods would be subjected to un-Christian messages in this movie...

The Guardian briefly here...

UK cinemagoers flock to 'anti-Christmas' Compass

Despite being labelled "the most anti-Christmas film possible" by the Vatican, The Golden Compass consolidated its hold at the top of the UK box office this week. The big budget adaptation of the Philip Pullman fantasy saga earned £12m to comfortably hold off the challenge of new arrivals Enchanted and Bee Movie, which entered the chart in second and third place respectively.

Fred Claus fell two spots to fourth position, while the toyshop spectacular Mr Magorium's Wonder Emporium was another new entry at five.

The Golden Compass has generally received lukewarm reviews from the critics, although few were as stinging as an editorial in this week's issue of the official Vatican newspaper l'Osservatore Romano, which looks unlikely to be one that the makers will be putting on the poster. It condemned the film as "un-Christian" and "the most anti-Christmas film possible" and added that it was "devoid of any particular emotion apart from a great chill".

The editorial took particular issue with Pullman's vision. "In Pullman's world, hope simply does not exist, because there is no salvation but only personal, individualistic capacity to control the situation and dominate events," it said.

They should know: like most religions they've been trying to "control the situation and dominate events" for centuries. No let up from that as yet...

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