Saturday, July 31, 2010
The Life of Brian, Commentary
I've watched the Life of Brian today. Basically, if anyone thinks that this movie is offensive to Christianity or Judaism, you have to get a life and look closer. The movie essentially is based on what might happen if someone were completely mistaken for the Messiah. The Christ, as he was portrayed in the movie, wasn't put down or made fun of. In fact, I think Christianity was reverently handled. What the movie did make fun of was the sheep mentality.
The Pythoners are actually geniuses when they put together their entertainment. When they do a movie, they make a lot of social commentary on their day. The movie does ridicule Authority. From the Pharisee at the beginning to Pontius Pilate. May I stress that the movie doesn't make fun of the Christ.
Basically, Brian is born about the same time as the Christ, around 4 BC. About 33 years later, Brian begins his adventures. He has an abusive mom (Terry Jones, I think), no father, and a hatred of the Romans. He falls in with the wrong group, gets into a raid on the Fortress of Antony in order to kidnap the wife of Pilate. However, he's truly innocent when his group (the People's Front) meets up with the Judean People's Front and the both of them get into a tussle over who planned what first.
Well, they die, and he is the only one left. The Romans capture him and bring him before Pontius Pilate who initially wants to crucify him for trespassing and being an accessory to breaking and entering. However, Brian claims that he's the son of a Roman Citizen and they get him confused with Biggus Dickus -- Pilate's friend from Rome. He escapes, after a prisoner says that he is envious that he's getting crucified.
Having reached his so called friends, he leads the Romans right to them. And the Romans visit not once, but three times. On the third time, Brian falls to the street and takes on the guise of being a street preacher. He preaches the Sermon on the Mount as best as he could from the Savior. However, the people mistake him for the Savior and starts to follow him around enmasse (there's the Sheep Mentality). All at once the new cult -- the Cult of Brian -- starts up. At one point he tries to tell them to leave him alone, and he's not the Messiah, but the people are drunk with Sheeple thinking.
The next morning, they catch him naked and try to get more insight out of him. Brian denies having any authority and tries to get them to think for themselves. However, they are so drunk with Sheep think that they all answer in unison. Finally he escapes, but his girlfriend tries to tell him that they want him to be a leader. He eventually gets captured by the Romans, and was crucified. The Romans try to have him released, but they mistake his identity for another. So the people's front comes along and like untrue friends they abandon him to be crucified. However, the JPF comes along, announces that they are a suicide squad and then stab themselves to death with gladii. It ends when Eric Idle breaks out in a song.
The brilliant thing about the movie is that the central message is that we have the right to work out life for ourselves and to think for ourselves. Which I think is really one of the themes of Christianity. We work out our own salvation. And there are several times in the scriptures where Yahweh and the Savior promote independent thought (in the Bible as well as modern Revelation).
The other brilliant thing about the movie is that it really portrays Terrorists as being ineffectual. Just as ineffectual as governments (not that the suicide bombers are ineffectual, they cause terror more efficiently than the JPF). Finally, the Sheep think. What is strange is that the movie subtly hints that people are easily brainwashed when they want to be brainwashed. Sheep think is an easy way to brainwash a massive amount of people and this method can be taken advantage of through propaganda.
The strangest thing about this movie is that:
--- It offends Christians.
--- Atheists seem to love it.
Christians should not be offended by this movie. I don't find anything in this movie that offends Christ. But it does touch on how a cult or a church can be formed. As for Atheists, I really don't know how they get their kick off this movie. They either perceive it makes fun of Christianity in some way or they make fun at the people who are taken by Sheep think. What I think is that there are many Atheists who say that they are Atheists but are really not. I find most of them to be confident people even if they are outspoken against Yahweh or any other god. If it does speak out against Religion, I think its the Sheep think of a lot of people that Religion so often takes advantage of.
The Pythoners should be exonerated of the charge of blasphemy. Really, there was no blasphemy in the film. It's an innocent film about the stupidity of people, especially while in the grips of Sheep think. The movie does have nudity in it, but we are all naked underneith, so what is the big deal? And yes, there is a suggestion that they did have sex, but really the movie's message isn't about getting us to have sex out of wedlock. The real message of the movie is what could have happened if someone was mistaken for the Savior. Enjoy the movie, and remember to form your own opinion.