The Da Vinci Load: The Day before screening


Tomorrow is D-Day -- Da Vinci Code movie day.

I think I have decided not to bother with the movie. I hate the idea of giving Ron Howard, Tom Hanks and Dan Brown $7.50 of my hard-earned money to tarnish the Church I love and the Saviour I worship and adore.

There are indications that the movie is not going to be quite as explosive as the book. According to the NY Times review, "Ron Howard handles the supposedly provocative material in Dan Brown's best-selling book with kid gloves." By which I hope is meant that the book's idiotic historical and religious claptrap have been pared to a minimum. Which leaves us with a badly-written, trashy murder mystery. Which means the movie may flop once word of mouth gets around.

Meanwhile, back at the Boston Globe, Ethan Gilsdorf blames the media for making us stupid. We are treated to ever-more-clever video alternatives to reality, we chomp down reality TV programs that are really highly-scripted and edited, and our legislators swim from one side of the business/legislative pond to the other with hardly a ripple.

All true, but we make it dreadfully easy for them by our overinvolvement with fantasy worlds (TV, movies, games and even books) without bothering to look out the window. In a 21st century of "Bread and circuses" as long as the entertainment keeps coming, we don't care about the refugee, the immigrant or the victim of genocide -- or whether our way of life is being dismantled.

We're not stupid or misinformed. We're just too busy keeping up with our favorite sitcom or game or thriller.

But "The Da Vinci Code" controversy shows that there is life in us after all, perhaps just enough to trip the EEG above the flatline. Scholars and religious institutions and even the media are reacting with uncomforatble vigor to this latest assault on the truth. The only question is whether the flicker of life will be enough to revivify the bloated corpse-in-waiting that is more at home with glutting itself on comfortable lies and flickering controversies.