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Monday, June 4, 2012
NewsBusters: Anyone Who Criticizes Catholic Film Is 'Elitist'
Topic: NewsBusters

As part of the Media Research Center's public relations campaign to promote the new film "For Greater Glory," about a Catholic martyr in Mexico, Scott Whitlock sneered in a June 1 NewsBusters post that any film critic who didn't like the film was nothing but an "elitist":

Elitist film critics at several big city papers, Friday, mocked the Christian-themed movie For Greater Glory as "catnip for crusaders," a movie that exploits the struggle for religious freedom with "maximum teary-eyed outrage."

Whitlock takes particular aim at Detroit News reviewer Tom Long, who in Whitlock's words "could barely hide his disinterest in the movie's subject matter." In fact, it's clear from Long's review that his complaint was that the movie gave him no reason to care:

[Director Dean Wright] succeeds in making enough noise, but what the noise is about is left pretty unclear. Why was the Mexican government, personified by Ruben Blades as President Plutarco Elias Calles, intent on secularizing Mexico? And why do we care?

We don't much. None of the characters here really catch fire, despite a cast that includes upcomer Oscar Issac, the venerable Peter O'Toole and (briefly) Eva Longoria.

Whitlock apparently doesn't understand what film critics do, one of which is judging how effectively a film conveys its message to those outside its intended audience. If a film is simply pushing emotional buttons and building set pieces and not making an effort to make viewers not already invested in the film's agenda care about what's going on, it is a failure at a certain level.

But Whitlock any everyone else at the MRC involved in its propagandistic promotion of the film don't care such things. They care only that a message that conforms to its right-wing was delivered.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:40 AM EDT

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