There's a new movie starting to create a buzz. According to the trailer, the film is about a deranged middle-aged man with a brain tumor who decides that rather than taking his own life, he will go on a killing rampage to take out all those in our culture who he doesn't like. And guess who he partially sets his sights on? Reality stars for one. But also Christian extremists.
The film "God Bless America," buzzing now at the South by Southwest conference, imagines this fear in a black comedy on the silver screen [Content Warning for strong language]:
Along with a teenage female companion, the lead character Frank (Joel Murray) goes from pop culture critic to serial killer, spilling the blood of political extremists to spoiled reality TV stars. Newsbustesr 's Paul Wilson dissects the disturbing fantasy:
"While Frank’s rage against a shallow society is understandable, “God Bless America,” like Showtime’s hit TV show “Dexter,” celebrates a man who justifies using violence against people he considers evil, claiming “I only want to kill people who deserve to die.”
Unlike “Dexter,” the movie is clearly a black comedy that does not take itself seriously.
However, the movie’s title takes a gratuitous shot at the Christian God, by implying that God has “blessed” America with fools and idiots that need to be eliminated, and at those who revere America’s Judeo-Christian heritage. Goldthwait also depicts Christians in the usual Hollywood manner – by equating them all with the members of the extremist Westboro Baptist Church.
If a director were to make a movie titled “Allah Bless Saudi Arabia,” and had his protagonist indiscriminately shoot hatemongering imams, teenaged girls and people in movie theaters, he would be instantly blacklisted in Hollywood as a hateful bigot. But attacks on Christians garner only praise from the artistic community.
A movie that invokes the name of any religion’s God to justify gratuitous violence, no matter how cynically or “humorously,” goes beyond the pale. "
The "Bobcat" Goldthwait-directed film premiered in Toronto on September 11, 2011, was screened this past weekend in Austin and is slated for an April 6 U.S. release.