Apparently, many conservatives across the nation see the film March of the Penguins as an ode to "traditional" values. Some snippets:
On the conservative Web site WorldNetDaily.com, an opponent of abortion wrote that the movie "verified the beauty of life and the rightness of protecting it."
At a conference for young Republicans, the editor of National Review urged participants to see the movie because it promoted monogamy. A widely circulated Christian magazine said it made "a strong case for intelligent design."
"March of the Penguins," the conservative film critic and radio host Michael Medved said in an interview, is "the motion picture this summer that most passionately affirms traditional norms like monogamy, sacrifice and child rearing."
"That any one of these eggs survives is a remarkable feat - and, some might suppose, a strong case for intelligent design," he wrote. "It's sad that acknowledgment of a creator is absent in the examination of such strange and wonderful animals. But it's also a gap easily filled by family discussion after the film."
Rich Lowry, the editor of National Review, told the young conservatives' gathering last month: "You have to check out 'March of the Penguins.' It is an amazing movie. And I have to say, penguins are the really ideal example of monogamy. These things - the dedication of these birds is just amazing."
"Some of the circumstances they experienced seemed to parallel those of Christians," he said of the penguins. "The penguin is falling behind, is like some Christians falling behind. The path changes every year, yet they find their way, is like the Holy Spirit."
Mr. Hunt has provided a form on the Web site lionsofgod.com that can be downloaded and taken to the film. "Please use the notebook, flashlight and pen provided," it says, "to write down what God speaks to you as He speaks it to you."
As one religious colleague at work pointed out, "The penguins look for a new mate every year. Is that the kind of behavior these churches want to advocate?"
But this article got me thinking - this kind of dubious logic can be translated to pretty much any film. For example, in the 40 Year-0ld Virgin, Steve Carell has fallen behind. This, of course, is like some Christians falling behind. The women he doesn't bed changes every year, yet he eventually finds his way to getting laid. This is like the Holy Spirit.
What a load of crap!
I bet Weasel is up for the challenge of coming up with some other better examples of movies that could be co-opted in this manner. And if it wasn't so damn sacrilegious, I'm sure Maestra would participate in this game. The possibilities are truly endless.
Don't tell Michael Medved but I think the penguins to the back left are sodomizing each other.
Also in yesterday's paper, I found the obituary of Joseph Smitherman, the former mayor of Selma, Alabama. He was one of those wily politicians of the last forty years who were able to say that they were just kidding around about the whole "we hate blacks" thing once the tide has turned -- "Some of my best friends are black and some of them are on my staff!" My favorite part of the obituary is this gem:
In a nationally televised news conference in early 1965, the mayor was heard replacing the last name of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with the word "coon." He later said he had just had a conversation with a Selma bail bondsman named Martin Koon and that it was an honest slip of the tongue.
I didn't mean to say "During the slave period, the slave owner would breed his big black with his big woman so that he would have a big black kid–that's where it all started." What I meant to say was "During the indie rock period, Steve Albini would breed his big black with his big woman so that he would have some kick ass rawk - that's where it all started." I just got confused about the whole thing because I had just been listening to my favorite Big Black record.