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Sunday, September 13, 2009

No Creation in America

According to the Telegraph: Charles Darwin film 'too controversial for religious America'.
Creation, starring Paul Bettany, details Darwin's "struggle between faith and reason" as he wrote On The Origin of Species. It depicts him as a man who loses faith in God following the death of his beloved 10-year-old daughter, Annie.

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.
I didn't see the film on Thursday evening when the Toronto film festival opened but it got favorable reviews and lots of press in the local newspapers. Creation looks like a very good movie. It's a shame that it won't be seen in America.

UPDATE: It may have been a tempest in a teapot or (gasp!) a publicity ploy. Latest word is that there's a bidding war going on for distribution rights in the USA. It will soon be coming to a theater near you ... or maybe not so near.


  1. From Adam Rutherford's Twitter page:

    "Director of Creation just told me that they are hoping to sign a US distribution deal for #Darwin film Creation tonight."

  2. "a racist, a bigot and an 1800s naturalist"

    Wow, that third one is really going too far.

  3. I saw the movie at the festival and thought it was very good. It portrays Darwin as a thoughtful man and a loving husband and father. He wrestles with doubts about publishing his thesis because he knows the impact it will have on religion, and his wife is deeply religious. According to the film, the death of his daughter is the turning point in his decision making process.

    Although there are a few minor historical inaccuracies, the portrayal is mostly faithful to what I have read about Darwin, and the variances have clearly been made in the cause of dramatic story-telling. Paul Bettany is wonderful - a very powerful performance.

  4. Although this sort of thing is outrageous, the notion that viewers in the US will be deprived of seeing the movie is nuts. Ever heard of DVDs? Anyone who wants to see the movie can buy or rent the DVD from numerous sources when it becomes available. I suspect that the movie will also be available on venues such as Netflix for downloading.

  5. Since learning this movie was to be made and that the filmmakers were going to associate Darwin's daughter's death with a personal loss of religious faith, I've wondered if they were also going to attempt to make it appear as though this now-faithless Darwin contrived his theory of evolution as an emotional affront to a despised deity rather than as an evidence-based scientific undertaking. This would of course play well to those who already portray evolutionary theory as a non-scientific tool of those doing Satan's bidding, including atheists like me. I can already envision the sequel, "Darwin's Emotional Theory of Evolution," and how the American public will lap it up.

    The "lack of an American distributor" hype is quite likely part of the producer's marketing plan. Nothing breeds interest as much as telling someone they can't have something. Of course the possibility does exist that US distributors simply think that the movie fails to deliver to American Christian audiences those things they crave most - sex, violence, blood, and gore - while it brings with it far too much of what they truly disdain - the need to think.

  6. Oh my fucking god

    i was actually looking forward to that movie

  7. Nothing from the U.S. surprises me anymore.
    They still ban books & years ago there were protests against Sesame Street, once again fear the "S" word because it promoted sharing.
    I have yet to see the trailor, so I can't comment on the movie. However, with all the violent movies about killer robots, war & the end of the world out in the U.S. & the video games that clearly incite violence & bullying seems to be OK but this movie which presents an age-old scientific theory of the history of man & the scientist's struggle finding his road to the truth he would understand

  8. sorry, forgot to finish my thought from my 1st comment: is banned.
    Don't get it.

  9. I am afraid this sounds like a marketing gimmick. Stil, its a gimmick in a good cause.

  10. Anyone old enough (no, Larry, you're not included) to remember The Last Temptation of Christ? Possibly the worst movie I ever saw and the only reason I saw it was that it was being picketed by conservative Xians who were trying to drive it out of distribution ... or so the stories in the newspapers said. I think I was had. At least this movie might not be so bad.