Projections - Movie Reviews


It's difficult to imagine a script that is insulting and irreverent to Catholics bringing in spirituality at the same time.  Dogma does just that with a heavy dose of irreverence and a sprinkling of spirituality.

After cringing at some of the beginning antics of fallen angles Loki (Matt Damon) and Bartleby (Ben Affleck) who are searching for a way out of everlasting exile in Wisconsin, it's important to recognize this is a comedy and sit back, relax and enjoy what will be considered blaspheme by some.

Loki and Bartleby have learned that they can be returned to paradise by using a plenary indulgence which will be offered at the rededication of a church in New Jersey by Cardinal Glick (George Carlin).  If they succeed they will obliterate all human existence.

Bethany (Linda Fiorentino), a woman who is having a crisis of faith receives a message from Metatron (Alan Rickman).  He appears as a burning bush which she puts out with a fire extinguisher, informing her that she is a decedent of Mary, the Mother of Jesus and she alone can stop the end of existence.  How she is related to Mary is explained by apostle number 13, Rufus (Chris Rock).  It seems that Mary was a virgin at the time of Jesus' birth but after that she and Joseph produced other children the natural way.  Rufus also explains that white folks wrote him out of the bible and he hints that Jesus was also black.

Azrael (Jason Lee), a hotheaded demon dispatches nasty little roller hockey players to hit on certain people including an old man early on in the film.  Serendipity (Salma Hayek), a muse  came down to Earth to become a writer, after all she has some great stories, but writers block limited her writing and she become a striper to earn a living.  Two prophets, Jay (Jason Mewes) and Silent Bob (Kevin Smith) join in.  Jay providing a multitude of profanities to describe everything, and spending most of his time hoping to have a carnal experience with Bethany.

Kevin Smith, who is also the writer and director summarizes Dogma by stating "The commitment of the actors made me want to make a phenomenal flick because they were all taking a leap of faith in telling a story about a leap of faith."  If we accept that sentence Dogma works, but be warned to enjoy Dogma there must be no faith or one's faith must be very strong and secure.

From the first reveling of the new Jesus action figure, Christ in a pose winking with one eye and thumbs up on the faith, we are part of a dangerously hilarious movie and we are exposed to the idea that the two profits truly enjoyed the physical Mary Magdalena before Jesus changed her, avenging angles who bring serious gun fire power to a executive board room and kill everyone who has sinned, the idea that Mary was only a virgin until Jesus was born, that New Jersey is the gateway, that God's gender is in question and that profits are seriously flawed.

I suspect if one gets by the first scene accepting George Carlin as a Cardinal of the Catholic Church the remainder of the story must be an outrageous comedy.


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