Thursday, March 06, 2008

New Review of Expelled the Movie: "Deliciously Uncomfortable" Interview with Richard Dawkins

Presenting a new review of Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, which says in part:

I came into this film very, very skeptical, worried that it would be all about trying to disprove evolution and argue for creationism (thereby reinforcing stereotypes of anti-intellectual religious fundamentalists). I was worried that it would further reinforce the (false) binary that says Christianity and science are on two sides of a battle and can never have any common ground. But I was pleasantly surprised with Expelled on a number of levels.

First of all, it’s pretty funny and quite entertaining. Ben Stein’s hyper-dry way of interviewing people is great fun to watch, and his “everyman” persona makes him easy to sympathize with. His “anyone, anyone” Ferris Bueller character also makes him an appropriate choice for a film about the expulsion of dissenting ideas in the classroom.

Secondly, it’s a reasonably effective, well-mounted argument (if a tad on the manipulative side). The filmmakers interviewed many prominent figures from both sides of the debate, including an extended (and deliciously uncomfortable) interview between Stein and Richard Dawkins (atheist extraordinaire and author of The God Delusion). The film is smart to keep its focus on the glaring double standards and contradictions among the evolution advocates—who have built impenetrable walls around the sacrosanct theory of evolution and (in a very un-academic spirit) refused to allow any rational dialogue on the matter.

I am salivating to see that interview.

The film apparently focuses on "the glaring double standards and contradictions among the evolution advocates," and we have seen several examples of this in commentary about the film before it is even released. Related posts here.

Will this film replace or rival Inherit the Wind (or the Scopes Eugenics Trial) as the reigning paradigm for understanding (or misunderstanding) this controversy? Will the interview with Dawkins rival the cross-examination of William Jennings Bryan (or the mythical version of that in the movie)?

Hat tip to the Evo News blog.


Post a Comment

<< Home