Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Talking 'Bout Da Vinci

I love talk radio and I spend a lot of time listening to various pundits on both sides of the political aisle.  In fact, talk radio engendered many of the posts on this very blog.  Over the course of the past few weeks, several radio stations (especially those owned by the evil empire known as Salem Communications) have run ads regarding the upcoming release of The Da Vinci Code.  Apparently, some on the “religious right” feel that Dan Brown’s work of FICTION causes the reader to think too much and they feel obligated to dissuade Christians from seeing the movie and using the release of the movie as a proselytizing tool.

This morning, a local talk show featured a call-in segment about this very issue.  The host, a man notorious for aligning with the far right, admitted to never reading the book, but proceeded to attack the work on several grounds.  The callers seemed even less informed.  One caller noted that The Da Vinci Code was “very well written” and should be treated as a work of literature.

Hold up playa…let’s stop the boycotts and let’s stop labeling the work, “literature” and instead examine The Da Vinci Code for what it is, a means for entertainment.

Like many Americans, I drank the Mona Lisa laced Kool Aide and read The Da Vinci Code. Normally, I stray from reading mainstream best sellers.  After all, bad writing is like cheap after-shave—it’s everywhere, it’s hard to get rid of the stench and it’s no replacement for the real thing. Yet, The Da Vinci Code was different. Honestly, it reminded me of the Left Behind series—poorly written, yet sinfully entertaining, a true guilty pleasure.  Both use bad theology to exercise their points, but neither should be read as a replacement or supplement to the Bible.  

Scripture tells us that with faith the size of mustard seed we can move mountains.  Surely, the same amount of faith can protect us from a secular work of fiction.   The people who boycott this movie based on Brown’s portrayal of the Christ story lack the very entry-level faith Jesus begged of his disciples.  These Christians require a very controlling pastor and church that will dictate every move in their life and live life perpetually as a puppet, never experiencing life as a true child of God.

I say read the book and watch the movie.  Judge it based on its entertainment quality.  Is this Tom Hanks’ next Forrest Gump or has he stumbled into another Joe Versus The Volcano?  How does Brown’s novel translate on screen?  For an hour and a half you’ll relax and be treated to an entertaining story.  An hour later, you won’t even remember the name of the main character.


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