Democrats & Liberals Archives

The Passion of the Da Vinci Code

A controversial movie about Jesus Christ gets slammed by religious leaders, Biblical scholars, and many reviewers. Nevertheless, it generates boffo box office. Which movie were we talking about again?

Like The Passion of the Christ before it, the The Da Vinci Code is already a box office phenomenon. Released just last Friday, by Monday it had grossed $239 million worldwide, and $86 million domestically.* DVC has already outgrossed last year's culture war football, Brokeback Mountain.

I had some problems with the book, so I was apprehensive about the movie. Last night I went and saw it anyway. I am pleased to say that the filmmakers addressed several of my concerns. They dropped the ridiculous claim that the Church burned five million witches, opting instead for the figure of 50,000. (This may be BS too, but it least its plausible BS.) The movie also obliquely acknowledges that the Priory of Sion was exposed as a fraud. Finally, they make sure that the Catholic Church is not the villian, blaming instead a rogue "Council of Shadows". One of the Council members states that if the Church knew what they were up to, they would be excommunicated.

Opus Dei does not look good, but they have already begun to vigorously defend themselves. And they really do wear those creepy cilice things around their leg...

But is it a good movie, you ask? I found it quite enjoyable. Although I knew what was going to happen from reading the book, it was dramatized quite effectively. All of the major roles were extremely well cast: Robert, Sophie, Silas, Leigh Teabing, Bezu Fache. Paul Bettany is especially effective as Silas.

I think the big lesson here is that Hollywood should not worry about being provocative. Passion pissed off a lot of people, and so does DVC. The producers started interesting conversations, and prospered too. I think everybody wins.

*Incidentally, here is one record that DVC will never take away from Passion: it is the highest-grossing R-rated movie of all time. Put that in your culture war pipe...

Posted by Woody Mena at May 24, 2006 10:10 AM
Comments
Comment #150836

More on “everybody wins”: I think even Opus Dei may come out ahead. Call it the School Daze Effect. Spike Lee’s movie exposed a lot of ugly things about black colleges, but enrollment went up anyway. People were excited enough about the idea of going to a black college that they could forgive the negative things in the movie. I wouldn’t be surprised if something similar happens with Opus Dei. A lot of old-school Catholics will figure that if the Hollywood elites hate Opus Dei so much, it must be worth looking into…

Posted by: Woody Mena at May 24, 2006 10:44 AM
Comment #150843

I am not offended by the daVinci Code because of religion. What bothers me is the myth making aspects. The book is based on pretty much nothing. That’s fine. It is a novel. But so many people have now made semi documentary things about it that it is BECOMMING history. So I am offended as a historian.

It is an example of ex-post-facto thinking. If I say something randomly, but you think it has meaning, you will find that meaning. And if you don’t have to follow a straight line of evidence, you will find evidence that seems to make sense.

I think the funniest example was in the book and movie “Being There” were the idiot savant would say things that sounded wise. People around him would read in meaning until they thought it actually mean something. People commonly do this with their pets, BTW.

Remember the Bermuda Triangle? There is nothing particularly dangerous about that stretch of water. The whole myth can be traced down to a novel about a lost squadron. Bigfoot? The guy who perpetrated the initial hoax confessed and showed proof of how it was done. Crop circles? Same thing. Yet people believe these things. In fact it often seems easier to get people to believe myth than reality.

Posted by: Jack at May 24, 2006 11:02 AM
Comment #150849

Woody:

I expected DVC to be a big hit. Tom Hanks is one of the most bankable stars in Hollywood, and Ron Howard is a pretty reputable director. Considering they teamed up on the Apollo movie, which was great, I’d think people would pant over the DVC.

What I’ve found slightly humorous is the way people have treated the novel as some kind of historical and factual revelation. I found it an interesting read, but its still just a novel. I found the book engaging and a fun read, with good pacing and good plot.

But its still just a story from a creative guy. I could no more buy into its “truth” than I would buy into “Alias” being representative of intelligence agencies, “ER” being the prototypical emergency room, or “CSI” being an accurate depiction of crime scene technology.

You might find the attached link interesting: it goes through some of the mistakes and misinformation about the DVC—such as how Brown talks about GPS transmitters that don’t really work the way he describes them.

http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/davinci-code.htm

Posted by: joebagodonuts at May 24, 2006 11:14 AM
Comment #150850

What is curious about this book is that it’s historical “facts” have been debunked repeatedly.

As a work of fiction, both the book and the movie may work as entertainment, but as to it’s historical accuracy, it is just so much baloney.

Posted by: Rocky at May 24, 2006 11:15 AM
Comment #150862

It is fiction folks,y’know make-believe.I wish Ron Howard all the best in future projects as well. (I can’t help it,I always remember him as Opie) Hanks is Hanks and it doesnt matter if he is in drag or a astronaut suit.
I am much more interested in the search for Lazarus,how about it Dan Brown? The only human being who was documented to have been raised from the dead,and never had his re-death? recorded. How about a search for him!

Posted by: jblym at May 24, 2006 11:44 AM
Comment #150863

Woody

I enjoyed the DVC a lot…. it’s fiction…

I love fiction..a lot…

Recently I read a piece about Rove on the verge of being indicted …and it was going to happen a week ago last Friday,I think.

I also love politicial fiction too…a lot…

Posted by: sicilianeagle at May 24, 2006 11:45 AM
Comment #150864

oh my GAWD. This is THE MOST RIDICULOUS situation I can imagine. The DaVinci Code is a novel a storybook! The only thing they didn’t say was “Once upon a Time” as the first sentence. Any Catholic that was a devout Catholic wouldn’t be bothered by this book. Faith is not that fragile friends,it’s just not. As a pagan I find the premise intriguing but it’s a FICTIONAL NOVEL so I can’t make myself care that much. The thing that gets under my skin is the created controversy. I don’t think anyone is going to start believing that the Church has been covering up the secret bloodline of Jesus because of this book. There are many other books out there saying something quite similar and the Church has not fallen. Please this is as much of a silly non-story than Tom Cruise and Katie Holms’ baby. Someone make it stop!

Posted by: kp at May 24, 2006 11:51 AM
Comment #150866

kp:

Studies are showing that people ARE believing parts of the Da Vinci Code. You exclaim that no one will believe the premise, but people do. That’s the scary part, and I must admit…sort of the funny part. Dan Brown is milking it too. He knows a money maker when he sees it, and so too does Ron Howard, the bald Opie/Richie.

Eagle:

Yeah, whatever happened to Rove being indicted. John Trevisani breathlessly reported it on the 14th, but I’ve heard nothing since. Simply silence.

Report: Rove Indicted on Friday
Posted by john trevisani at May 14, 2006 08:22 PM

Of course, Rove was going to be indicted on Fitzmas too, and that didn’t happen. I hear the economy is going to implode on Monday, hurricanes are going to hit on Tuesday, Iran is nuking Israel on Wednesday, the San Andreas Fault is going to open up on Thursday, and to top off the week, Ted Kennedy and family are marketing a driving school franchise on Friday (classes begin just after happy hour).

Posted by: joebagodonuts at May 24, 2006 12:06 PM
Comment #150867

Rocky,
Since it is fiction…..historical accuracy doesn’t really matter.
I find it funny how the the religious literati are getting so upset about it.

Posted by: tinka at May 24, 2006 12:06 PM
Comment #150870

Having been raised a Catholic, and having attended Catholic school, I remember the reaction when John Lennon said the Beatles were more popular than Jesus (an admittedly silly thing to say, but at the time he was technically correct). I thought Sister Monica Francis was going to burst a blood vessel.
There was a firestorm of protests, and then we all moved on.

Posted by: Rocky at May 24, 2006 12:11 PM
Comment #150871

Of course then the Beatles faded into obscurity.

Posted by: Rocky at May 24, 2006 12:13 PM
Comment #150872

IT IS FICTION! But so is a lot of the believed mythology of Christianity.

Posted by: moksha at May 24, 2006 12:14 PM
Comment #150875

It’s first of all a NOVEL now a MOVIE so let the ultra right so called Cristian leaders tell their flocks what they can read and watch, along who and what to vote for. Everybody else can either read the NOVEL, you know a work of FICTION, or watch the movie, also a work of FICTION, and make up their own mind. Sheep, are we becoming a nation of sheep, must we be guided through everything in life by these self appointed guardians of their narrow view of life.

Posted by: C.T. Rich at May 24, 2006 12:21 PM
Comment #150876

Moksha,
Well put!!!

Posted by: C.T. Rich at May 24, 2006 12:22 PM
Comment #150877

Jack’s post pretty much explains the content of christian doctrine.

Indeed, that’s the appeal of the Da Vinci Code. Having been exposed to televangelists, the propaganda machines of Goebbels and Stalin, and even the constant spin of current politicians, the 21st century public is poised to accept skeptical criticisms of organized religion’s claims. And, the fact is that those claims rest on foundations that are so shaky that there’s plenty of room to play.

Posted by: Homer at May 24, 2006 12:23 PM
Comment #150883
Yet people believe these things. In fact it often seems easier to get people to believe myth than reality.

Jack,

That’s a good thing for the multibillion dollar a year God industry called the Church!

Posted by: JayJay Snowman at May 24, 2006 12:38 PM
Comment #150908

Re DVC as history vs. fiction: It is true that DVC is labeled as a work of fiction. On the other hand, Dan Brown does claim to be educating people about the secret history of the Church. It is kind of like with Oliver Stone and JFK. He kept dodging and weaving about whether the movie was supposed to be historically accurate or not.

One thing I find kind of dicey about the DVC novel is that very first page starts with the word “Fact” on the top, and claims the existence of two organizations: Opus Dei, which is real, and the Priory of Sion, which isn’t (unless you are a real conspiracy theorist). So right off the bat, Brown is mixing truth with fiction and calling it all truth. I suppose you could argue that even the word “Fact” is somehow framed in a fictional context.

In the end if people take DVC as the Gospel truth, so to speak, they have no one to blame but themselves. There have been so many books, magazines, websites, TV shows, etc. debunking the claims in the book that readers/viewers have been amply warned.

Posted by: Woody Mena at May 24, 2006 1:33 PM
Comment #150913

If you have lived a life in such a way that fiction can easily stick to you a fact, then you have only yourself to blame. The Catholic church, historically, is one of the most repugnant organizations man has had to endure. At a time when they should be vigorously cleaning their own “glass house” - they in turn go after a work of fiction.

My question is, if this book is soooo much BS fiction and all of the institutions are sooo innocent, then why has this hit such a nerve? Why all the counter-information? (The History Channel is running about 4 of them…) Didn’t the Pope come out with a statement about the book?

The guilty always talk the most about their innocence.

Posted by: tony at May 24, 2006 1:51 PM
Comment #150919

OW! Moksha that hurt! The only trouble with your statement is that some of the most incredible minds in human history subscribe to that so called mythology. Anybody remember Thomas Aquinas? Or Martin Luther? How about John PaulII.

Posted by: jblym at May 24, 2006 2:04 PM
Comment #150922

Tony

Next time someone shows “Birth of a Nation” and then people talk about the basic truths, let me know how you react. That also was considered a great film.

Sometimes where there is smoke, there is no fire. Sometimes people think they are caught with the pants down, only to find they have no pants.

Your post demostrates why people are upset. This IS a work of fiction. There is as much truth in “The Terminator” (I, II or III), but you don’t see documentaries about that, do you?

Posted by: Jack at May 24, 2006 2:08 PM
Comment #150923

Rocky, your post was so damn funny. I loved it.

“There was a firestorm of protests, and then we all moved on.”

And there we have it in a buttery popcorn-scented nutshell!

Posted by: Adrienne at May 24, 2006 2:10 PM
Comment #150924

I think I’m gonna get my church to boycott the next Disney movie, or maybe the next X-Men movie, because none of it actually happened. It would be about as appropriate as what we’re seeing here.

Posted by: Rob Cottrell at May 24, 2006 2:10 PM
Comment #150926

jblym,

The human mind is a funny thing. A smart guy born into a racist family usually grows up racist, despite his intelligence.

More importantly, the existence of smart racists doesn’t prove racism is true. It just shows that long-held societal assumptions are not easily torn down.

Posted by: Homer at May 24, 2006 2:12 PM
Comment #150933

Let me get this straight…

I am supposed to believe that a burning bush can speak somebody, but it is impossible to assume Christ had relations with a women.

Interesting.

Posted by: Vincent Vega at May 24, 2006 2:19 PM
Comment #150936

Homer I agree,but I have to say that nature vs nurture is not the end of the discussion. I have to believe that anyone can raise themselves above a current situation if they wish to.To believe in fallacy after being shown the truth is not only racist,but lazy minded.

Posted by: jblym at May 24, 2006 2:22 PM
Comment #150941

Jack -

Please (PLEASE) explain to me how you got the idea I think this film or book in factual?

My post is that the people knocked around in this book are guilty, just not with things associated with the book or film. I thought I made that point very clear.

Posted by: tony at May 24, 2006 2:28 PM
Comment #150952

jblym,

People’s fidelity to long-held views is more than just being lazy. They often have a lot invested — psychologically, if nothing else — in preserving their comfortable worldview. And that’s tough to overcome. For instance, whenever some crackpot eugenicist came up with “science” to justify racism, the smart racists found an easy refuge to hide in, at least for a while.

Everyone on this board has come across opponents who are unwilling to bend their views, even in the face of “overpowering” evidence. That’s the rule, not the exception. Always has been.

Posted by: Homer at May 24, 2006 2:51 PM
Comment #150960

Homer I understand that to many,ignorance is bliss. The trick is not to be the loudest becrier of racism, or anything else that touches your heart. The way to fight injustice is to be the most persistent. Even granite can be worn down by the application of a single drop of water. If we can all find a way to apply that drop in our every day lives,things will get better. It may be a situation of “bread today,bread tommorow” but that doesnt have to be next week.

Posted by: jblym at May 24, 2006 3:05 PM
Comment #150964

I’ve read the book but haven’t seen the movie though I intend to. As an actioner, it’s not as good as Brown’s ANGELS AND DEMONS. As nearly as I can tell, it’s got some historical fact, some historical speculation, and a hell of a lot of pure fabrication. Kinda like the bible.

Posted by: Thom Houts at May 24, 2006 3:10 PM
Comment #150966

Tony

” …why has this hit such a nerve? Why all the counter-information? …”

“The guilty always talk the most about their innocence.”

That implied to me that you believed the book addressed “truthyness.”

Posted by: Jack at May 24, 2006 3:13 PM
Comment #150972

The DVC is Raiders of the Lost Arc all over again. People gravitate to particular pieces of
popular entertainment like gazelles to a waterhole in a drought and act like the current tidbit is a cultural touchstone. Ann Rice benefitted from this phenonmena with her series of whining vampire books (Oh its so horrible to be undead and live forever!). Eventually interest fades, but I am always surprised by the next incarnation of cultural gas (remember the macareno?).

Posted by: goodkingned at May 24, 2006 3:33 PM
Comment #150989

I think there’s a lot of “truthyness” in the book - more in the nature of the beast than historical “factyness”.

Posted by: tony at May 24, 2006 4:08 PM
Comment #151009

Yawwwwnn. (Sigh…) zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Posted by: Tim Crow at May 24, 2006 5:15 PM
Comment #151021

Thom,you’re right,Angels and Demons was a better book,although I also enjoyed DVC.Anyone with common sense knows going in that it is a fictional piece.Admittedly,Mr. Brown uses shades of fact to lure readers in, but come on…FICTION,okay?It hit a nerve because talking about JC is like talking about a sensitive guy’s momma.Coming from a devout Catholic family, I hear a lot of this whining at home.My mother suggested I take a hint from the Opus Dei and begin a ritual of self-flagellation.

Posted by: Theresa at May 24, 2006 5:57 PM
Comment #151030

joeybags!!!! “Don’t you think I know that!!!” How COOL that you posted on this. E-mail me the story on the people believing it I totally need a laugh this afternoon/evening.
Sadly, having spent a little guilty time on line about this, I’m beginning to believe you. In real life I know you’re the Scully and I’m the Mulder, I guess I’d just rather believe I’m on the lunatic fringe and argue for the normal people. I guess I can’t accept that the world can be full of “me’s”
YIKES!
Oh and Angels & Demons was better. I’ll second, third or whatever that.

Posted by: kp at May 24, 2006 6:58 PM
Comment #151034

Well there is truth in the DVC as well as fiction. YES the whole story line is fake but the places, groups, symbolism, and art are real. The groups did exist at one point or another, do they exist today… no body really knows, but of course there is a lot of speculation about that but it matters not. It existed once and that’s all that matters. BTW “Church burned five million witches, opting instead for the figure of 50,000.” I agree the number is absurdly high but… People killing ‘witches’ is still going on today in the name of the ‘Church.’ So who really knows the number… even more so since the number is still increasing.

The story is completely bogus, but those who dismiss the art, the places, groups and symbolism by saying the ‘Whole’ of the book, or the ‘Whole’ of his research is bunk… I say look again.

Einghf

Posted by: Einghf at May 24, 2006 7:16 PM
Comment #151038

I’m not sure why everyone keeps saying “it’s JUST fiction”. Fiction is a powerful tool. That’s why orthodoxy hates it. If you can get people to think about something, you have had an effect.

A good read. I don’t know that I’ll watch the movie.

Posted by: leftofcenter at May 24, 2006 7:28 PM
Comment #151085

Howard himself readily admits,”this is enternaunment,not theology.” Nuff said.
Now,how about a discussion of the Church. The immigration quandary,for example, is largely the result a population explosion in Mexico.It is not just a moral choice of the Mexican people but the result of the Churches influence on government policy that discourages family planning and education. Same thing in the Philippines,whose biggest export is people.

Posted by: BillS at May 24, 2006 10:32 PM
Comment #151106

This is so amusing, really it is. But I’m happy. If another group of religious nutbag fanatics get upset about something, I’m a very happy man. If this movie offended them, I’m very glad to hear it. They need offended. Daily. They offend me by breathing the same air as I do. Poetic Justice, meet the Religious Right.

On a lighter note, paraphrase good old William Shakey. Much ado about nothing. It is so amazing that these faith-ridden yahoos go into such a fervor over something as banal as a movie, one that isn’t even a documentary, but a fictional account of history.

Hell, the Republicans have been doing great at fictional history. You know, the part about Democrats being traitors, and the part about Ronald “Bankrupt the Nation with Nuclear Arsenals” Reagan being chiefly responsible for winning the Cold War. This movie should be right up their street.

What’s really great about this response from the fundamentalist tossbags is that it is so hackneyed. They did the same thing with The Passion. Put out something fictional that might have a reference to a religious mythical figure, and open the floodgates, because here come the waterheads!

If you’re old enough, you will recall the amazing backlash that occured after Monty Python’s Life of Brian came out. The CoE went ballistic, and so did the Baptist buttmunches in the Sayouth. Even though time and time again, John Cleese and Co. said that the movie wasn’t remotely about Jesus, but it was about people falling in with “messiahs” at the drop of a hat, not willing or probably able to think for themselves. These are the people that love to be led. However, since Jesus does appear in the movie doing the Sermon on the Mount, they all went “AHHHHHHH! YOU ARE MAKING SPORT OF JESUS! BLASPHEMER!” and other such nonsensical garbage.

Want more fictional history? How about Columbus discovered America? How about Paul Revere being the man who warned the Minutemen that the British were coming (it was a woman rider that really did, because she wasn’t caught), etc. I could go on for days. School history in the US is already stunningly and embarrassingly full of gobshite statements like these and many, many others.

I say, clean up the history you’re teaching to our children rather than worrying about a movie that is already admitted to be fiction by the director and the author of the book it was made from? Can we do that first, can we?

The way the Religious Right sounds reminds me of the Muslims hounding poor Salman Rushdie. And they are about as radical, also.

Non serviam.

Posted by: joshuacrime at May 25, 2006 12:46 AM
Comment #151123


Myths are wonderful things. They give people something to have faith in.

My favorite myth is the Sumarian interventionist myth. ” keep the faith baby.”

Posted by: jlw at May 25, 2006 2:04 AM
Comment #151130

joshuacrime:

May the spirit of Rush Limbaugh possess your IPOD.

Greetings from the Sayouth.

Posted by: goodkingned at May 25, 2006 2:44 AM
Comment #151148

You folks may be interested in this passage from Dan Brown’s FAQ page:

HOW MUCH OF THIS NOVEL IS TRUE?

The Da Vinci Code is a novel and therefore a work of fiction. While the book’s characters and their actions are obviously not real, the artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals depicted in this novel all exist (for example, Leonardo Da Vinci’s paintings, the Gnostic Gospels, Hieros Gamos, etc.). These real elements are interpreted and debated by fictional characters. While it is my belief that some of the theories discussed by these characters may have merit, each individual reader must explore these characters’ viewpoints and come to his or her own interpretations. My hope in writing this novel was that the story would serve as a catalyst and a springboard for people to discuss the important topics of faith, religion, and history.

Posted by: Woody Mena at May 25, 2006 6:43 AM
Comment #151157

DVC is very similar to The Last Temptation of Christ. Both use religion to discuss/explore certains ideas. LTC was all about the conflict between man’s spiritual being and sentinal being. If you think about it, Jesus is the perfect example for this discussion, but all the super-sensitive Christians got their panties in a wad.

DVC is more about the power and domination of the Catholic church. Of course, it was obvious what reaction some people would have. While reading the book, I could see the multitude of panites wadding with each page.

Of course, the church feels that if it can prove that this book is not factually correct (IT’s FICTION) then they can somehow diffuse the issue. This isn’t really a surprising reaction by the church, just obnoxious as usual.

Posted by: tony at May 25, 2006 8:33 AM
Comment #151163

Rocky:

As a work of fiction, both the book and the movie may work as entertainment, but as to it’s historical accuracy, it is just so much baloney.

What don’t you understand about fiction? It’s not supposed to be factual!! Why are so many people so blank on the difference between fiction and non-fiction???

Posted by: Lynne at May 25, 2006 9:51 AM
Comment #151170

Lynne,

“What don’t you understand about fiction? It’s not supposed to be factual!! Why are so many people so blank on the difference between fiction and non-fiction???”

It’s not just fiction, it’s based on a fraud.

Posted by: Rocky at May 25, 2006 10:20 AM
Comment #151224

Joshuacrime,

Yes, it should be a crime for you to share the name of the Messiah. Thanks for reminding us why liberals are so compassionate, understanding, and open minded. BTW, it was a MAN named Israel Bissel who did the majority of warning the minutemen about the British, after Paul Revere rode for a few miles. I know you like to subscribe to the “goddess” religion in DVC, but there really weren’t any women involved in the “Midnight Ride”. Get your facts straight, Brown.. I mean Josh.

Posted by: Duano at May 25, 2006 12:15 PM
Comment #151238

Rocky…you so obviously don’t want to even make an attempt to understand fiction…fiction doesn’t have to be based on anything factual or true…you’re being easily confused by all these religious fanatics who also don’t understand fiction…fiction is NOT fact, fiction IS NOT true, fiction is just fluffy reading for fun…are murder mysteries based on absolute fact? Nope…they might have some incidents that ring true, but if you go to Barnes & Noble, they’re filed under fiction or mysteries, not under true crime…The Da Vinci Code isn’t in the religion section, either…it’s in the fiction section…because it’s FICTION!

Posted by: Lynne at May 25, 2006 12:39 PM
Comment #151250

Lynne,

Then why is some of the information presented as FACT, when the reverse is true?

The “Prieuré de Sion” actually existed. It was used to create the fraud that the book is based around.
This book/movie is a fantasy based on a fraud.
If you find it entertaining, fine.

Believe me I know the difference.
I think you’re reading a lot more into what I have written here than I intended.

Posted by: Rocky at May 25, 2006 1:00 PM
Comment #151251

None of this matters. This time next year DVC will be a distant memory, and the Bible (worldwide all time best seller) will still be standing strong. “Heaven and Earth shall pass away, but My Words shall never pass away.” His words will ring true again, like always.

Posted by: Duano at May 25, 2006 1:00 PM
Comment #151253

Pretty good for a NON-FICTION book.

Posted by: Duano at May 25, 2006 1:02 PM
Comment #151292

Rocky…If you know more than what you’re writing, it doesn’t show…you consistently want this fiction book be based on fact…every fiction book is based on some fact, whether historical or not…mysteries are based on murders and murders certainly take place…some things in the mystery may have actually occurred, but these events are not being written about as fact…how about the disclaimers at the beginning of Law and Order? You can easily pick out what news story the storyline was based on, but the episode is not fact…

Why so much insistence that this specific fictional book be based on “fact” and not other books? Read any of Steve Berry’s? Raymond Khoury? Do you expect to find them stating facts as facts or do you expect them to use a “fact” or something that once was accepted as fact as a jumping off point for a story??

I think this whole thing is very much like the Muslims who rioted against the cartoons…although the cartoons were maliciously done, they got much more attention and notoriety than they deserved; same goes for this book.

I’m going to go see the movie tomorrow and re-read the book on vacation…I just plain don’t think it’s controversial in the least because it’s fiction…much like Kazantzakis’ work…why attribute truth when it’s not there and was never meant to be there. Makes you wonder what the church really considers as truth!!

Posted by: Lynne at May 25, 2006 2:26 PM
Comment #151297

“None of this matters. This time next year DVC will be a distant memory, and the Bible (worldwide all time best seller) will still be standing strong. “Heaven and Earth shall pass away, but My Words shall never pass away.” His words will ring true again, like always.”

Wheeeew. I was really concerned for a bit. Thanks for the reasurance.

Bible - fact or fiction… now that’s a worthy topic… or maybe fiction based on “fraud.” (Now, that’s a wonderfully insane way to look at fiction.)

Posted by: tony at May 25, 2006 2:40 PM
Comment #151299

Lynne,

Frankly I don’t care if it is based on fact or not.

My point all along has been that the author presented his story as fact, and it ain’t.

This man has to be laughing all the way to the bank, especially with all the free advertising he is getting from the controversy it has generated.

Please don’t lump me in with the tin hat, conspiracy crowd. I have posted here that it was fiction, AND it was fiction whose “historical accuracy” was based on a hoax.

I never said that it was anything but fiction, and I have no idea how you would have gotten the impression otherwise

Posted by: Rocky at May 25, 2006 2:44 PM
Comment #151327

“My point all along has been that the author presented his story as fact, and it ain’t.”

Is it not presented as anything other than fiction… very similar to a Michael Crichton novel… it was made more engaging by linking it closely/coloring with relative facts. Do you have a statement from Brown that his presented this as fact? Or are you still twisting this up as non-fiction.

The Wizard of Oz was “presented” as fact… but I promise that there are no green witched flying around on broomsticks.

Posted by: tony at May 25, 2006 3:45 PM
Comment #151333

I totally considered the “Fact” section before the “Fiction” section as a “lure” to draw people into the story, I didn’t consider that the book would deal with fact anyway…perhaps I’m just a more discerning reader…DVC wasn’t historical fiction where this type of preface (or sometimes “afterword”) is used to distinguish fact from fiction…therefore, it had to be a literary device to get the reader into the story…

Posted by: Lynne at May 25, 2006 4:16 PM
Comment #151393

Hey, if it was my misunderstanding, my bad.

Posted by: Rocky at May 25, 2006 7:30 PM
Comment #151420

What the group seems to be missing here is that this piece of fiction has wide appeal, and that
the reasons it is attractive and interesting to many are more to the point than worrying whether there is any “truth” in the story.
There is in modern times an element of deep distrust of organized religion, and especially of the Catholic church (there is also still blind faith on the other hand). In addition, there is a contemporary desire to give a place in the religious cores to women, who had been historically shut out of major roles in the major religions. So DaVinci Code speaks to these fears/opinions/desires.
It reads as plausable. It’s a good yarn.
I enjoyed the book in part because I love to see standard viewpoints challenged. If readers and viewers have their preconceived notions stretched, that is probably all to the good. Thinking is good exercise.
dana

Posted by: dana at May 25, 2006 9:45 PM
Comment #151474

I believe it! Every word! Now go away, I’m busy taping pages of the bible over all my walls!

No wait, that was the Exorcist. Never mind.

Posted by: goodkingned at May 26, 2006 1:06 AM
Comment #151487

Goodkinged,

Since I lived there for a while myself, I actually like the South. Can’t say I liked Bible thumping yahoos, however. And you can stand there and tell all reading this that the South is full of the enlightened Liberal, but from my experience, that simply is not the case. If you read carefully, you would see my statement was against drooling drawlbuckets waving some book around and thinking that, because this book is a “sacred text”, that gives them the right to stifle works of art and entertainment as it suits their beliefs. We have Bible thumpers all over the US, and they all think it bestows upon them special dispensation to run the concept of freedom of expression through the shredder. Nice try.

Posted by: joshuacrime at May 26, 2006 3:54 AM
Comment #151490

Sharing the name of the “Messiah”, well, YOUR Messiah anyway, had nothing to do with me. The name of the “Messiah” shares no special place in my thinking, nor do I care what others think about it, either. Keep Thy Religion To Thyself.

And my book source mentions that there were a LOT of people warning the populace that the British were entering Lexington by ship. There was a woman that was also riding that night. WHat was my point? My point was that history being taught in US schools was crap, and I’m right. This Israel guy also did, so you are right. However, it wasn’t just Revere or Bissel, others were involved as well.

What was the meaning of my statement? That we are taught crap history here. I’m not interested in your opinion of who rode more and visited more houses. I am interested that there were lots of other people involved, and even knowing that, they only mention Paul Revere.

So, way to go on being pedantic. You’re impressive.

Posted by: joshuacrime at May 26, 2006 4:03 AM
Comment #151510

“And you can stand there and tell all reading this that the South is full of the enlightened Liberal, but from my experience, that simply is not the case.”

Hello - I’d like to challenge this comment.

Posted by: tony at May 26, 2006 6:40 AM
Comment #151520

joshuacrime:

When you tell me that you don’t mean all Southerners when you use a regional slur, its is like saying you don’t mean all black people when you use a racial slur.

If you want to hold prejudiced (prejudged) opinions about the South that’s your right, but it erodes your grip on the moral high ground.

Posted by: goodkingned at May 26, 2006 8:09 AM
Comment #151527

Hooray for Holywood! Opie and Tom are laughing all the way to the bank.

gobshite?? So much for English as a standard.

Note: Ask a 12 year old who the Beatles were, if you believe they will live forever.

Posted by: gergle at May 26, 2006 8:41 AM
Comment #151536

As long as Michael Jackson still owns the Beatles songs, they will live forever.

Posted by: Rocky at May 26, 2006 9:28 AM
Comment #151579

In each lies there exist a string of thruth. The debate exist because of the systematic lies that has always surrounded religion. The institution of religion is the only institution that steers away from scientifically proving any of the ascertions that they make

Posted by: Underdogg at May 26, 2006 11:11 AM
Comment #152069
joshuacrime:

When you tell me that you don’t mean all Southerners when you use a regional slur, its is like saying you don’t mean all black people when you use a racial slur.

If you want to hold prejudiced (prejudged) opinions about the South that’s your right, but it erodes your grip on the moral high ground.

Misrepresenting what I say because your arguments previous to this were bollocks, is OK as well. Just don’t expect me to respect that opinion any more than I did before.

As I said, I lived in the South, Georgia to be precise, as recent as the early 90’s. Now, I’m going to let you in on a few of my experiences that I, as a northern Yankee, found appalling. In the “New South” as so many people liked to remind me it was, I personally was on a military burial detachment for 90 days with a 12 man team (6 pallbearers of which I was one, and 6 in the firing squad) doing full military honor funerals throughout the area (150 mile radius with some extra areas added on).

In 90 days, we did 60 funerals for veterans of WWII, Korea and Vietnam veterans. Every day following one, we would inevitably eat in a greasy spoon in some rural town. The demographics of our group was about 80% black, and the rest of us white or Hispanic. I cannot recall one single time in a small town where we were not bothered by locals, and in 5 instances, refused service to our team. In all 5 of those cases, I, being one of the few whites in the team (and the ranking pallbearer at the time) would go up to the counter and ask what the problem was. The manager would smile and be as polite as possible and explain that “the management has the right to refuse service to anyone at any time” and would always look in the direction of the NCOIC, a very black man, or one of the other black troops in the team.

This happened so often that it disgusted me. Bear in mind, we were in full dress uniform, but it didn’t matter a damn bit.

While I was in Augusta, another incident occured the day I was ETS’ing from the Army. A popular restaruant just outside of the city limits that served buffalo burgers had 4 very well dressed black men enter and sit at a table and waited to be waited on. The manager, as it was relayed to me by someone who was actually there at the time, told these men that “there was no way in hell that a nigger would get a burger here” and proceeded to have them removed from the establishment. Those 4 men happened to be lawyers from the NAACP, and the restaraunt was closed in a few days following the incident.

Now, with as many places as I went to, and as many overtly racist attitudes as I witnessed, you can tell me that the vast majority of the population of the deep South is any different than this? Oh, I’m sure that in the cities people are more educated and have been more places and experienced different cultures. But not everyone. And that’s my point. The “drawling yahoos” I refer to are those people. I knew plenty of highly intelligent Southerners and were proud to call them my friends. Then there are the others…

Posted by: joshuacrime at May 28, 2006 3:37 AM
Comment #152070
Hooray for Holywood! Opie and Tom are laughing all the way to the bank.

gobshite?? So much for English as a standard.

Note: Ask a 12 year old who the Beatles were, if you believe they will live forever.

I’m not even sure what you are referring to, but I will say this much. Learn to spell first before criticizing someone about using “English” as a standard.

The term “Gobshite” IS English. The Queen’s, to be precise. The vernacular is used to describe something very stupid, “gob” meaning spit and “shite” meaning shit. Being called a “gobshite” is like being called an idiot. Since both the United States and the nations that make up Great Britain and the Commonwealth speak English, perhaps you need to broaden your way of thinking more. It would serve you well.

And I’ll ask a 12 year old precisely nothing, as they are 12 years old. They don’t know a damn thing about anything. When I find one that has something useful to say, I’ll be sure to pay attention. I know a bunch of them, and their collective output doesn’t impress me in the slightest. Not being mean to them, just telling it like it is. And I have news for you: the Beatles are still well regarded throughout all age groups. Will they ever die? Eventually, everyone does and everything does. Is their music timeless? No question.

Posted by: joshuacrime at May 28, 2006 3:45 AM
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