Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Golden Compass Evaluation

As The Golden Compass appears to be headed quickly to the discount theaters, we recommend the assessment of the books and movie on "tothesource," where Peter Vere and Sandra Miesel, authors of The Pied Piper of Atheism, are interviewed.

We note this remark from Vere:

I was asked to review the movie this past weekend. It exemplifies the one trait that will kill any epic fantasy at the box office: It's boring!

We SWNIDishly opine that atheism in all forms is extremely boring. Not to mention bleak, presumptuous, uncurious, and intellectually incoherent. If an atheist is interesting, it's despite her atheism. If a believer is boring, his faith is nevertheless interesting.


Anonymous said...

In fact, I find it quite ironic that this movie was marketed with its fantasy elements in the foreground. Of course, in a purely naturalistic world, there can be no such things as witches, daemons, and talking polar bears. Yet even the books, much less the movie, have these fantastic plot elements. Isn't it interesting that the author cannot make the story interesting unless he includes the very plot elements that should be excluded by his own worldview? Somewhere deep down inside, this author must realize that he cannot weave an interesting story from within the parameters of the narrative world of his own atheism.

Calus The Great said...

If by "purely naturalistic world," you mean world governed by empirical laws like those in our own world, then no, there cannot be talking polar bears and whatnot. If, however, by "purely naturalistic world," you mean a world governed exclusively by empirical laws, then there is no a priori reason that such creatures could not exist in a world with laws a bit different from the ones in ours. I think it is this second type of world that the stories depict. Again, if atheism is possible in our world, there is no reason why it isn't possible in the alternate world. There are many good reasons to criticize Pullman's atheism, but yours isn't one of them.

Calus The Great said...

Hilariously idiotic remark: A poster on an internet forum claimed that Rolling Stone's poor review of the film was religious backlash.

Bryan D said...

Having read Northern Lights in great detail as a part of my thesis, I can say quite confidently that it at least (I've not quite finished the trilogy) is not at all atheistic. It's actually quite Protestant in that it's critiques of "the Church" which appears in Pullman's world much on the same terms which Luther and Co. criticized the Roman Church during the Reformation.

It's fundamentally amusing to me that the very people who criticize both novel and film because it's been categorized by some Dobson type as atheistic actually routinely employ all the criticisms which they find so offensive when they appear in Pullman's work.