Monday, June 23, 2008


Dogma; Fantasy satire, USA, 1999; D: Kevin Smith, S: Linda Fiorentino, Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Chris Rock, Jason Mewes, Alan Rickman, Jason Lee, Salma Hayek, Kevin Smith, Alanis Morissette, Bud Cort, Janeane Garofalo

Since God likes to play video games he takes a human shape, but then he gets attacked by evil hockey players who send him into coma. That gives time for the evil Azrael to place an article in a newspaper that fools the fallen angels Bartleby and Loki who think that their sins would be forgiven if they pass through a new church. But that would mean that God made a mistake and destroy the Universe, so his voice Metatron begs Catholic abortion clinic worker Bethany to stop them. She is joined by Jay and Silent Bob, the 13th apostle Rufus who claims that Jesus was Black and Serendipity. Bartleby and Loki kill people who sinned. But then Loki kills Bartleby while Bethany pulls God out of the body of the old man, who crushes Loki. God turns out to be a woman and gives Bethany the gift to become pregnant with a new messiah.

At the beginning of "Dogma" there is a disclaimer that bespeaks the viewers to not take this satirical story about religion seriously, but it still caused protests and publicity during its premiere, thus actually becoming a small hit, grossing 30 million $ at the box office, a lot more than Smith's previous films that earned just 2 or 3 millions previously. It's a matter of a dark but funny and sharp satire that poses tricky questions - by stating that Jesus was Black, for instance, Smith doesn't question if Christian religion is real, but if highly religious people are more fond of the religious rules or of essential faith: frankly, people should always try to distinguish religion from faith/ spirituality. The movie is filled with cynical dialogues like: "Some sins never change", "You have to read between the lines in the Bible" and even some that mock celebrities from our daily lives, like when Jay goes on a long rant about how "Roger Ebert watches every John Hughes film". Linda Fiorentino is slightly stiff as the main heroine, but otherwise fine, while it was a very clever idea to present God as a woman, though a lot of things wrecked the film and reduced its value, like the "shit demon" and the bloody finale that's quite trashy and thus pulls the sharpness through the dirt.


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