Archive for Saturday, May 20, 2006

Concerned about the ‘Code’

Protesters convene at Lawrence theater, label movie ‘blasphemous’

May 20, 2006


A group of 12 people called the new movie blasphemous and protested the showing of "The Da Vinci Code" on Friday evening outside the Hollywood Southwind 12 Theater in Lawrence.

"We're that adamant to stand up for our values and do reparation for this blasphemy," said Jeanine Blanck, a protest organizer from Perry.

The movie is based on a popular but controversial novel by Dan Brown. According to the novel, Jesus Christ secretly married Mary Magdalene and fathered a child. Members of the Catholic Church have also criticized the fictional work for its portrayal of a church-related group, Opus Dei, in the story.

The Lawrence protest was one of hundreds scheduled nationwide by the Catholic group "The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property," Blanck said.

The group members said prayers and held signs rejecting the movie as cars drove into the theater's parking lot, but they were far from the entrance to the theater.

The largest sign said the movie "insults our Lord Jesus Christ, attacks His Church and our sacred Catholic faith."

"Fiction is a great teacher. Some people have used a lot of fiction to teach. They have their agenda, and we are trying to smash that," Blanck said.

Twins Angelik and Cecilia Hiepert, 12, of Newbury were among 12 protesters who showed up Friday to express their displeasure for "The Da Vinci Code" outside the Hollywood Southwind 12 Theater at 3433 Iowa.

Twins Angelik and Cecilia Hiepert, 12, of Newbury were among 12 protesters who showed up Friday to express their displeasure for "The Da Vinci Code" outside the Hollywood Southwind 12 Theater at 3433 Iowa.

Some preparing to watch the movie said they were eager to see the story on the big screen.

"I liked the book a lot," said Jim LaRocca, a Free State High School junior. "I'm Catholic, and I don't see anything wrong with it."

"It just seems like anti-culture," Benjamin Greenberg, also a Free State junior, said of the protest.

Movie theater staff members said three of the four Friday evening shows were sold out. They expected the same this evening.

"We just find it really interesting and think it's a good story. People can choose what they want to believe. It's just a movie," Jessica Wenberg, of Lawrence, said.


bmwjhawk 12 years, 1 month ago

Can anyone get these people a life? The book was entertaining, but it wasn't life-changing. The movie is getting horrible reviews and the only reason I now want to see it is to walk past these losers who probably haven't even read the book.

lunacydetector 12 years, 1 month ago

i know people who read the book who took it as fact. i consider these people idiots, but they believed what they read.

at least there aren't people getting blown up, killed by other means, or injured like the muslims did because of a cartoon.

lunacydetector 12 years, 1 month ago

this movie takes forever to get going, and even when it finally does, it fails to sustain the momentum delivering one of the most thoroughly anti-climatic endings.

there are too many symbols and too many arcane codes, but the real reason the movie fails is because it lacks suspense and is way too long.

as for the anti-Catholic nature of the movie, it is a credit to ron howard that he softened the edges. the conversation about the divinity of Christ and about religious belief in general was portrayed with greater sensitivity to Christians than was depicted in the book.

if the movie had been a success, the effect would have been troubling. because it fails to persuade, this is one movie practicing Christians have nothing to worry about.

pundit 12 years, 1 month ago

There is an interesting read on the marketing of this movie to the Christian community in this week's New Yorker:

bondmen 12 years, 1 month ago

Homosexuals, lesbians and gender confused folks protest uncriticized - illegal immigrants protest - racist groups of all colors protest - Freddy Phelps and his demons protest, but how dare Bible believing, God fearing, Jesus loving people come out of their prayer closets and protest.

How dare Christians try and force their opinions on a spiritually pagan and lost society! Christians should be banned by law from expressing any of their old fashioned ideas! Let's clean up this town and make them wear a large red cross on their clothes when in public so we won't be tainted by their presence!

We won't truly be free until Christians are shamed by our sick society and their influence forced out of our putrid culture. Yes it is tolerant to be intolerant and it's ok to be bigoted against any believers in Jesus.

After all isn't the DaVinci Code book and movie a good example of true fiction?

BrianR 12 years, 1 month ago

Making all this noise about this movie will make it more successful; as usual, protesting is having the opposite effect.

paladin 12 years, 1 month ago

Irony is always with us and seems to be unavoidable. You keep bumping into it as you wander the Earth, aimlessly. There is very little distinction between Truth and fiction anymore. Very little difference between fantasy and reality, or right and wrong. What is longed for, and sought out, is whatever fulfills a given need at any given time. We are all decadent hedonists.

Gareth Skarka 12 years, 1 month ago

I'm not surprised that they're getting this worked up over a work of fiction....after all, they've based their sense of purpose and self-worth on a work of fiction (the Bible) as well.

Or, to put it another way: a book is a mirror. If you hold it up to a cretin, don't expect to see a reflection of Einstein.

Christine Pennewell Davis 12 years, 1 month ago

the movie is ok to long and is the case most of the time not the book. The protesters were not a problem because they are up by holiday inn and they really only a few. I wish they would at least read the book then maybe they would not have a problem with all this. There may be some parts of this movie that are true most is not. The cathloic church can not call foul due to the fact it has its own self to blame for the way people view them and have damaged themsevles in the public eye. Bondman sometimes people that say they are enlightended do not have all the facts and people have a right to protest yes but one should at least know what they are protesting and one should list phelps with any one else that man hates not loves, And yes I am cathloc have no problem with the movie or the book and all this code and conspiracy theroy have been going on since the death of christ this is not new to most people but this was just a movie made from a book made by a man that used little bits of fact add his own words and boom there we are like all movies just go have fun and never forget it is NOT REAL PEOPLE

Fred Whitehead Jr. 12 years, 1 month ago

I haven't seen the movie (they cost too much and later show up at the rental store or late night movies) or read the book (they cost too much and I like other topics better) but I have slept at a Holiday Inn,, no, wrong commercial. It never ceases to amaze me the negative effects that some folks get from their religion. And the ridiculous extreams some are willing to demonstrate. The fresh-scrubbed kids being hustled downtown to show their religious fervor pounded into them by zealot parents. The nuts that protested this movie. Like, there is nothing else that they need to do. If you have a faith, practice it and live it. Jesus told us to live good and faithful lives. He did not tell us to act like loons or idiots. Fred Phelps is a great example of all the wrong things that can be taken from the teachings in the Bible. Nothing that movie presents effects any of us in our daily lives. Nothing in that book I have not read will affect the way I live my life or treat others. Nothing that I have seen on the History Channel (which is all I know about this subject) will cause me to do anything any different that I would normally do, to live well, love others, help others and be thankful to the Devine Power for my good health and fortune (figure of speech, I am not rich) So why are so many shallow, clueless people getting in an uproar about this, yet another, controversy? Remember "Jesus Christ Superstar"? Did that make the world turn backwards? You folks need to take stock of your lives and get real.

craigers 12 years, 1 month ago

I don't see this movie as such a big problem. Instead if Christians did their homework, they could help others understand some of the controversial aspects of the movie. Anything that brings attention to God, can be used as a good tool for all Christians if we aren't too afraid to stand up for what we believe in and present the biblical truth.

Confrontation 12 years, 1 month ago

"i know people who read the book who took it as fact. i consider these people idiots, but they believed what they read."

Sounds like they were reading the bible.

xenophonschild 12 years, 1 month ago

What's the problem? Jesus was a man, a simple ordinary human male. If he "married" an ex-prostitute and had a child - children - with her, so what? He was not God, not ever. That's the point that gets lost in translation.

paladin: Speak for yourself. Some of us are focused like laser beams on Truth.

paladin 12 years, 1 month ago

I, too am focused on the Truth, most of the time anyway. But, more like a cheap flashlight with the batteries getting low. The beam reaches out a little, falls flat, and gets dimmer all the time. Perhaps, there is nothing to be seen in the dark after all.

james bush 12 years, 1 month ago

LJW and KU atheists are conducting secret studies with these articles and our responses. Beware, soma and aclu conspirators are cateloguing everyone's responses!

its_obvious 12 years, 1 month ago

She was not a prostitute, ever! Certain manipulative men made that up to discredit her because they were jealous of her close relationship to Jesus and they wanted to make it seem like only men were "OK'd" to have positions of spiritual leadership. That perpetuated a huge mental sickness in society that has lasted thousands of years and is still defended by some misguided people.

justsomewench 12 years, 1 month ago

I'd like to organize a protest of protestors and then splinter off and organize a protest of protestors of protestors.

There would have to be disguises, of course.

justsomewench 12 years, 1 month ago

(Though, the misspellings might blow my cover. Damn.)

Kelly Powell 12 years, 1 month ago

Bondman......Firstly define "spiritually pagan".....secondly, maybe people are getting sick and tired of christians protesting everything that offends them.....You have to admit you guys tend to be preachy and intolerant about many things. If more christians would spend the energy to actually live up to the tenants christ asked of them and quit trying to use their faith as a political platform everybody would be better off.......Living in a free society means you have to let others do things and delve into ideas that you may find repulsive or are denied to you because of your faith....have a nice day.

Kelly Powell 12 years, 1 month ago

You have a valid point....Let me try to restate what I was trying to get at.....To me it boils down to free will....If god allowed us this then to me it seems that having these large political movements trying legislate morality are actually hindering what the big guy set out for us....If you are forcing people to live lives that do not allow them the free will to know good & evil.....To come to this knowledge by themselves through experience, then they would never truly come to christ with free will and humility. Also I believe that most political platforms tend to become cults of peronalities and that then they are following the word of man, not god........If it sounds like I'm lawyering here please forgive me, I am trying to make my point without offending anyone too much and still have a solid stance......And thank you for actually inviting discussion, it is becoming rare on this board.

badger 12 years, 1 month ago

"...a spiritually pagan and lost society..."


The pagans are winning!

Weeeee are the chaaaampions, Weeeeeeeeeee are the chaaaaaaampions...


Seriously, there, sparky, if you think this society is pagan, you should see the ones I hang out in.

Linda Endicott 12 years, 1 month ago

I think it's pretty ridiculous to protest over a movie. What part of "fiction" don't they understand?

Please, people. I don't think anyone is going to let a stupid movie influence their religious beliefs. If they do, there beliefs weren't very strong to begin with.

As with "The Passion of the Christ", though, all the talk and all the protests are only going to assure that this movie will be one big money-maker.

Linda Endicott 12 years, 1 month ago

Oops...that should have been "their"...just in case the grammar police are already up...

GardenMomma 12 years, 1 month ago

The movie "The Last Temptation of Christ" had this same kind of protesting at the time of its release in 1988.

Things never change. People will always feel compelled to voice their opinions. It's the degree to which they go that can get out of hand.

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