One of the greatest fictions of all time is the existence of God.
In our view, this God phenomenon, whether Ram, Jesus, Allah or any of the other lesser known mutants, is an enduring nonsense the likes of which has never been seen on Planet Earth.
Despite the lack of any compelling evidence to prove the existence of God, Religion has flourished for several millenniums and shows no signs of a slowdown. And under the aegis of this illusionary God, Hindus, Christians and Muslims have committed some of the most heinous atrocities against those they consider infidels.
So it was with great delight that we learned Bill Maher (who we love for his TV shows on HBO channel that mercilessly flagellate the Bush administration) was featuring in a documentary about God and Religion called Religulous (a portmanteau word from Religion and Ridiculous).
Off we went to our Regal Multiplex to watch Religulous, which is directed by Larry Charles (director of that hilarious comedy Borat), to see Bill Maher lampoon Religion.
The movie hall was more crowded than we expected.
You see, a lot of Americans, even the non-Church going ones, still believe in the God nonsense and are not keen on seeing him/her/it disparaged. Perhaps, it was the appeal of Bill Maher that drew in the crowds.
Religulous is good but not that good.
Sure it has its nice moments as Bill Maher goes around Israel, Amsterdam, LondonÂ and different parts of the U.S. poking fun at the blind certainty of the believers.
Many of the believers come across as plain stupid and often unable to answer some of the basic questions posed by Bill Maher, who sarcastically says at one point that No one who ever wrote about Jesus met him.
The film cleverly intersperses scenes from other movies (?) and news clips to make a point and liven up things.
More than anything else, Bill Maher is irritated that there is only smug certitude and not skepticism toward this big question of Religion. The other guys are selling certainty, he says in a vexed tone.
We’d have liked the film to be more eviscerating of Religion and its deluded believers who worship at the altar of idiocy.
Having suckled on Michael Moore’s documentary-tits like Fahrenheit 9/11 and Sicko, our main grouse with Religulous is that it does not pack the same amount of gun powder.
Focusing exclusively on Christians, Jews and Muslims, Religulous does not consider Hinduism at all (except for a passing mention of Krishna as a carpenter, which didn’t seem true to us). This is a big omission given that there are over a billion Hindus in the world, most of whom are convinced that bathing and drinking that feces-laden Ganges is a sure ticket to Moksha (salvation).