Bill Maher, Religulous

Lionsgate

According to the prophet Bill Maher, religion, as we know it, is detrimental to society. His tenants are as follows:

  • If you believe in religion you’re an idiot.
  • Believing in religion is akin to being mentally insane.
  • Religious people better smarten up or we’re all gonna die.

But, where’s the humour in all that?

Worry pas friend, this is just the message wrapped in between the funny honey, honey. For a film that runs 90 minutes, Maher, former ringmaster of the political late-night debate program, Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, somehow manages to comedically castrate all the world’s major religions without actually delving too deep into anything worth mulling over once the screen fades to black. And, really, would you want to think about it anymore than that? He’s betting no, actually you do not.

Directed by Larry Charles (Seinfeld writing-alum and director of the Borat film), Religulous takes Maher into a world where he believes hypocrisy rules supreme and questioning types like himself have a right, nay, a duty, to expose evil-doers for the farces that they are; to lead them not into temptation but deliver them from blind faith, to cast them out of the kingdom of Judeo-Christian fear and to give them this day of daily dread, to be done on earth as it is in his perceived rational haven…Can the man get an Amen!

First up, our agnostic guide takes us to the holy land; both in Israel and Orlando. Apparently Disney World ain’t the only show in town, because Christians get their thrills at The Holy Land Experience, a recreation of biblical times full of choreographed Andrew Lloyd Weber-inspired numbers and a daily re-enactment of the crucifixion of Christ. Maher even gets face time with the big guy himself, the actor playing Jesus Christ, who blows his mind by relating the Christian trifecta of the father, the spirit and the Holy Ghost to water, ice and steam. “Even though it’s shit, it rocked me for a minute,” Maher admits.

For the complete review and more, check out showcase.ca.

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