Monday, September 14, 2009

Charles Darwin film 'too controversial for religious America'

There is a film which has been distributed all across the world and yet the American market remains closed to it, because it's subject matter is deemed "too controversial". And the shockingly controversial subject matter: Charles Darwin.

Apparently even showing the film is the US would be too much for the religious rights sensibilities.

The film was chosen to open the Toronto Film Festival and has its British premiere on Sunday. It has been sold in almost every territory around the world, from Australia to Scandinavia.

However, US distributors have resolutely passed on a film which will prove hugely divisive in a country where, according to a Gallup poll conducted in February, only 39 per cent of Americans believe in the theory of evolution., an influential site which reviews films from a Christian perspective, described Darwin as the father of eugenics and denounced him as "a racist, a bigot and an 1800s naturalist whose legacy is mass murder". His "half-baked theory" directly influenced Adolf Hitler and led to "atrocities, crimes against humanity, cloning and genetic engineering", the site stated.

The film has sparked fierce debate on US Christian websites, with a typical comment dismissing evolution as "a silly theory with a serious lack of evidence to support it despite over a century of trying".
Only 39% of Americans believe in the theory of evolution? I do sometimes wonder how the US - populated in a large part by people who appear mentally unhinged - ever got to it's present position as world leader.

Jeremy Thomas, the Oscar-winning producer of Creation, said he was astonished that such attitudes exist 150 years after On The Origin of Species was published.

"That's what we're up against. In 2009. It's amazing," he said.

"The film has no distributor in America. It has got a deal everywhere else in the world but in the US, and it's because of what the film is about. People have been saying this is the best film they've seen all year, yet nobody in the US has picked it up.

"It is unbelievable to us that this is still a really hot potato in America. There's still a great belief that He made the world in six days. It's quite difficult for we in the UK to imagine religion in America. We live in a country which is no longer so religious. But in the US, outside of New York and LA, religion rules.

There are times when I look at the US and I simply don't get it. This is one of those times. They do say you should never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

This is the proof of that aphorism.


daveawayfromhome said...

I'd be curious to know if that number has increased since 50s or 60s. I'd also be curious to know whether that number includes Intelligent Designers, many of whom dont actually reject Darwinism, just the idea that it arose randomly. I'd guess the number of six-dayers to be more in a percentage similar to that of the Bush True Believers, and for much the same reason.

Kel said...

I have no idea, Dave. I just found the numbers given to be rather shocking.