Catholic League Prepares to Protest Angels and Demons

They might as well have sent them an RSVP, but with the prequel novel Angels and Demons riding the success of the DaVinci Code coming out in theaters, is it any surprise that the Catholic League would react any differently to their protest about the franchise?

FilmJunk shares:

The ever vigilant Catholic League have announced their intentions to launch a massive P.R. battle against Ron Howard’s upcoming adaptation of the Dan Brown book Angels & Demons. Three years ago they also rallied against the release of The Da Vinci Code, but if anything, their efforts probably only helped to generate more publicity for the flick, which ended up earning $758 million worldwide.

These people do realize that this is a movie based on FICTION right? They are not saying that the Vatican is REALLY hiding proof that the bible is a lie right? Its a work of fiction.

Honestly, after their last public outcry against The DaVinci Code, and how people speculated that they offered up MORE publicity for the movie, would it really be worth their while? I think they might be shooting themselves in the foot here. They could make a public statement saying they don’t approve and recognize that it is speculative fiction, but honestly it is the reaction that the bullies crave on the playground so they have to play their part and fight back vocally.

There are even plans for a booklet! Maybe they can strike a deal with the producers and have it included in the DVD as a bonus feature.

I know some devout Roman Catholics who love Dan Brown’s books, and their faith isn’t jarred. But I also know some other Catholics who just don’t care and won’t read it or see the movies because they don’t like their Church being depicted like that. Frankly, if a work of fiction can shake your faith to its core, I wouldn’t blame the fiction as much as I would blame your weak devotion to your faith.

For our International Friends of Catholic Faith, do you find Angels and Demons and/or DaVinci Code to be interesting “what if” fiction, or do you see it as an offense to your beliefs, or do you simply not care either way?

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30 thoughts on “Catholic League Prepares to Protest Angels and Demons

    1. I find your ignorance offensive.

      You think that Hollywood specifically targets only your religion, while you hypocritically make assumptions about mine. Your blind ignorance is even more entertaining than your limited perceptions.

      Hollywood is an equal opportunity offender. Don’t kid yourself “Saint”

  1. Bashing the Catholic religion and making at least 5 movies a year about the holocaust are at the top of the agendas of all Hollywood producers. So it’s not surprising that Angels and Demons was green lighted. I just hope that someday Hollywood will be controlled by a more diverse group of people that will not have specific agendas that dictate what kinds of films they’re willing to fund.

    1. Saint James, get your head out of your ass. They don’t have an anti catholic agenda in hollywood.

      And if you bothered to read ANYTHING about Angels and Demons, the main character is on the Catholic guys’ side.

      I hope that someday catholics like you will stop giving catholics a bad name.

  2. I’m not Catholic and so I won’t comment for myself, but I am friends with a Jesuit Priest who has dedicated his life to theology and the translation of ancient Biblical texts (he has multiple PhDs across various disciplines in theology). After I read both A&D and Da Vinci I asked him if he had read them, and what he thought of them.

    “Weren’t they fantastic?” was his response. “Talk about fun treasure hunt fantasy.” We talked more seriously at length about them, and the bottom line was that he and his superiors in the Church didn’t take them seriously beyond works of fiction meant for entertainment purposes. They actually asked him to read them and report on them from the perspective of the controversy, but he didn’t see them as substantial threats to his or other people’s faiths at all. He didn’t agree with the conspiracies presented in the stories, but he couldn’t deny loving the rides along the way.

  3. Call me fickle but I didn’t want to see Da Vinci Code because I thought it was defaming the image of Christ. (I haven’t seen it but yet but I feel that I may cave in soon.) I really want to see this movie partly because of the whole Illuminati angle.

  4. The DaVinci Code was fiction and entertainment, not meant to be taken very seriously but many people do not view it that way. Many people believe that The DaVinci Code is true and that the massive evidence to the contrary is false. I believe our society is too conspiracy-oriented where we readily accept some “secret” explanation which barely has any basis in fact and reject the large number of experts on the subject who tell us otherwise.
    Sadly, most people do not separate fact from fiction.
    Angels and Demons looks a lot better than The DaVinci Code though.

  5. I personally didn’t like The DaVinci Code film and thought it was ludicrous and boring.
    It is based on FICTION. However, vast amounts of people watched The DaVinci Code and took it as FACT. I know of several people who seriously believe that the film/book is preaching some kind of hidden truth. It saddens me that these people will listen to some fiction writer but not the majority of historians who dismiss those theories as false.
    In the end, it could be ironic in that it drums up more attention for the film.

  6. Now… it’s been a while since I’ve read the novel, but isn’t Langdon on the side of the Catholic Church fighting against the science based organization of the Illuminati? Why is the Catholic Church so upset by this? I don’t remember a single negative thing about Catholics or the Vatican… maybe the league should actually read the book before they condemn it?

  7. I’m Catholic and did watch the DaVinci Code movie finally last year as I finally gave in. Turned out in my opinion to be an okay movie, not great, but not horrible and some parts were entertaining.

    Sure facts might be wrong, but how many action/adventure movies are made with wrong facts. Just about all of them.

    I feel my job as a Catholic when it relates to stuff like this is to offer my opinion when I can and to know the true history of past events, so I can answer questions or debate others who might have a different opinion than me.

    After all like some of you have said, it’s just a movie.

  8. Give me a break it is just a movie.

    Why don’t they boycott gansta rappers for wearing gold plated diamond encrusted crosses around their necks why they smack hoes around?

  9. I also regard it -and DaVinci-as fiction. However, it should be pointed out, Rodney, that DaVinci is actually claimed to be based “on fact”. Don’t laugh. That’s what author Dan Brown says right out, and there are good people both faithful and non-faithful who happen to be conspiracy theorists.

    I do happen to agree that such controversy helped DaVinci’s box office more than it should have. The book may have been an oddball but interesting yarn, but the movie was pretentious and boring. I’m hoping the filmmakers learned from their mistakes.
    I am getting sick and tired, however, over the Entertainment Tonight coverage of the film, calling it a smash hit even before it is released. I know they do that all the time when they run out of things to say about Britney Spears or The Who Wants To Get Dumped on National TV, but to me, this is a mere blip on the radar and something I’ll just skip.

    And that’s tough, because usually I’ll see a film directed by Ron Howard and/or starring Tom Hanks.

    1. What Dan Brown says “Right Out” is that the organizations that have a presence in his books are real organizations. After which he notes that “All descriptions of artwork, architecture, documents, and secret rituals in this novel are accurate.” Where in there does it say that they story itself is based on fact?

    2. Actually Buff, there is a great deal that Dan Brown says are historically accurate documents and places and organizations that have been proved to be false or vastly inaccurate.

      It might be inspired by some of these real places and theories, but Brown is far from a theologian or historian. He is a fiction writer.

      And what he makes is fiction.

  10. I personally think that Dan Brown is a stupid anti-Catholic bigot who perpetuates lies and slanders about the Catholic Church for nefarious purposes. Catholics are the only people who can be insulted in this way : neither Dan Brown nor anyone in Hollywood or in the Western world would dare to insult Muslims, Jews, Protestants, Black people, homosexuals, women or any other groups in such a way. However, I do agree that it may not be a good idea to create publicity for such a despicable movie, by launching such a campaign. The Catholic League is doing a great job showing the fallacy of many claims against the Catholic Church, like about the role of Pope Pius XII during WW2. I think they should focus on those campaigns to restore historical truth and revealing anti-Catholic hatred, rather than wasting time and money on this. In the end, being insulted, harmed and slandered because of Jesus is what being a Christian is all about. Christ himself had announced that : “Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.” (Matthew, 5, 11)

    1. Yea, no, none of those groups get made fun of EVER. Except, you know, in most comedies. Oh, and some dramas. Oh, there is the issue of action movies… and horror flicks… But yea. You’re right. Catholics are bullied by EVERYONE. (/sarcasm)

    2. Jean, Dan Brown can be anti whatever he wants. But the bottom line is that he creates FICTION. Its already perpetuated that everything he is saying is made up.

      He uses real world organizations, locations and artifacts, but in the end nothing that is “proven” in the movie can be proven.

      Your rant is a little flip floppy… first you judge Dan Brown (something your bible says is unfavourly of a christ follower) then you make false claims that only Catholics are ever depicted poorly while I can give at least 5 examples of each of those groups you said Hollywood wouldnt dare insult. Then you start quoting scripture out of context?

      Maybe you should talk to your priest/pastor or whatever leads your church. The scripture you quoted was a warning and reminding people that it was because of their devotion to Christ that people would mock them. It wasn’t saying that any extra blessings or titles would be bestowed upon you if someone makes fun of your faith.

      And the persecution he is talking about is DEATH or social excommunication, not just a dirty look or an off colour joke.

      It is people that react like you do that makes people assume Christians are crazy people. Romans 2:22 “My name (Christ) will be blasphemed among the gentiles (non-christians) because of YOU”

      People judge Christ by his followers. Try to remember that.

    3. Rodney, you have no respect, belief, or reverence for the bible. You apparently view it as a pack of lies. I do not say this to accuse you, I don’t care, I say this because when you try to use the bible to argue you fail.

      First of all it is a common misconception that to judge someone is against the bible. Yes, there are many people who say that it is and some (false) interpretations of the bible do say that it is. The verse that Jean quoted was not taken out of context, if you would like to refute this go ahead I will be ready. The verse also does not only mean death it means persecution. When you have people who mock you, poke fun at you, beat you, anything against you because of your beliefs that is persecution.

      Lastly the verse that you used, Romans 2:22 does not say anything close to what you said it did. It says “You who say, “Do not commit adultery,” do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples?”* I assume that you meant verse 24 which reads
      “For “the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you,” as it is written.”
      I can go into great, boring, depth explaining why this is taken out of context but since I don’t think you care, and if you did I don’t think you would care long enough for me to have you understand, I won’t. Just realize that this is taken out of context. What is my point with this? Since you don’t understand the bible, don’t know the bible, don’t care about the bible, your arguments are pointless.

      @Jean: What you said is a classic example of “confirmation bias”. Since you are not muslim, Jew, Protestant, homosexual ect. you won’t realize those as much as Catholicism. If you buy a new car that you like but also isn’t popular you start to see it everywhere. When we bought an Astro van we started seeing Astro vans all over the place. It is the same thing. As much as I would not like to admit it there are plenty of things that are against the list you gave. I am not including common jokes in this since EVERYTHING is made fun of in jokes. For movies and TV shows muslims are made fun or misrepresented all the time or shown a stereotypical one. The same thing Protestants. I almost NEVER see a satisfactory depiction of Protestants, though I think this is in many ways their fault. Jews are also depicted stereotypically as are homosexual, and catholics. No matter what you do in life you will have this problem so don’t go pointing fingers because everyone will point them back at you.

      As a personal note, I find it easier when my convictions are displayed comically not fictionally. Every bit of fiction has to have truth to make it believable and it is a drama it has a more believable feel to it. Comedy on the other hand people don’t think much of, they don’t analyze, they just take it, laugh, and let it go. As long as it isn’t anything too offensive I can see the humor. However, from what I heard of Dan Brown, he tries to make people question if it really is fiction. He plants little things in them that makes them ask “but what if”. It is this part of his work that I find most damaging.

  11. It’s been a while since I read Angels & Demons, long before I had read its sequel, the DaVinci Code (enjoying both immensely), but my recollection is that in the preamble of both books, Brown makes the very ambiguous statement that while some of the plot is fictional, all of the historical events are true and accurately depicted. What he is not honest about, however, is the credibility and accuracy of his historical sources. So while we can all assure ourselves it was only a work of “fiction”, the author himself attempts to undermine that confidence.

  12. I agree with the second comments that many of us Catholics felt that to rent the film was feeding the coffers of those who would defame the Church for their own personal gain. It feels like participating in aiding and abetting, making it possible for future films like it. Gee? I wonder where that idea would come from?

  13. I am not Catholic. That said let me continue.

    Catholics do believe that it is fiction and are aware of it. The problem is that those who are not well versed in the ways of the church can get the wrong idea. Yes, they also know it is fiction, but how much? Where is that line between what is real and what is not. If you are not Catholic and don’t have any or very limited knowledge of the religion would you be able to say what is real and what isn’t?

    People will always take religious fiction and say that it is truth. Not that it happened but that is what they believe. Where do most people learn about Islam, movies and TV shows. They will tell you that they know it is fiction but as I said before the line between truth and fiction is very thin. Another example of this are the Left Behind series. I can’t tell you how many times people said that the Left Behind series was equal to the Bible.

    This said let point out the final flaw in what you said.

    “I also know some other Catholics who (won’t) see the movies because they don’t like their Church being depicted like that. Frankly, if a work of fiction can shake your faith to its core, I wouldn’t blame the fiction as much as I would blame your weak devotion to your faith.”

    This statement is completely wrong if I do say so a complete misunderstanding and misrepresentation of religion. The work of fiction does not shake it to their core, it shakes the perception of those who do not share the faith. Those Catholics who did not see the movies or read the books did not do so because they thought their faith would be challenged but rather that any misrepresentation of their beliefs was and is an insult to them. By watching the movies or reading the books it would signify that the desecration was of no matter.

    1. You presume my statement about rocking the faithful

      It is not wrong. It is an opinion. People who are not Catholic are very unlikely to see this movie and think “oh, that’s what Catholicism is really about” and those who are faithful can clearly see the flaws to the fiction and differentiate.

      If this fiction could change their faith, then they don’t have much to begin with.

      Those who disagree with the depiction can simply opt not to buy a ticket or rent the movie.

      I found Dogma to be utterly entertaining and it pisses all over what the church and faith is about. Its just fiction.

    2. It is obvious that you are not religious. Somehow, I am not sure how, you missed my point. When you say “If this fiction could change their faith, then they don’t have much to begin with.” that is the exact opposite of what I am saying.

      Your statement is an opinion, yes. I agree, if a work of fiction makes a person question their faith then they don’t have a very strong faith. However, the part that you are wrong is that this is the reason that catholics don’t want to see the movie. A piece of fiction that depicts a false impression of the Catholic church does not change the faith of a devout Catholic or even a semi-devout Catholic. What the piece of fiction does is give a false impression on the way others, those who are not part of the Church, view the church. Now the mass majority of people will not think that the Catholics are a big conspiracy, but that does not mean that they won’t glean a smaller, yet still inaccurate, impression of the religion.

      Since I don’t know of any convictions that you have, if any, I can’t draw upon them to make my point. The convictions that you may have are also probably not about anything sacred and holy because few separate from religion are. I realize you don’t agree with these religious beliefs, I don’t either, but that is not the point. The point is to put yourself into their shoes to understand them.

      Finally, those who have their beliefs should not be rebuked for defending the image of them. If you saw someone taking the Mona Lisa and start burning it you would probably try to stop them. Not because you like the painting but rather because it is held in awe by so many and the destruction of it just unthinkable. In the same way the catholics have the right and I would even say are expected to try and stop what can be described as a desecration of their religion. If they didn’t, that is the sign that they have week faith. So let them be. Yeah, their method may not be the best, they may end up giving more publicity to the film and end up increasing the box office but they are doing what they see as right and in the end, does it really matter.

    3. Mandarin, your presumption couldnt be farther from the truth. I have studied theology, was a roommate to the Pastor of the Largest Church in Canada, practically provided housing for a Youth Pastor as well as researching Mormon and Catholic faiths.

      Don’t presume that because I dont sound like a bible thumper that I havent cracked the spine.

      My opinion applies to both your points Mandarin… If the movie can rock your faith, then you have none, and quite the other side of the coin, if a piece of fiction can establish your opinion on a faith then you have no independent thought either.

      I have and still consider myself a Christian and though not a very good example of one, I still hold to my beliefs and have a deep understanding of theology from a number of different perspectives.

      No stab at the church in any film has changed my beliefs and let me tell you there are plenty of documentaries based on FACTS that could attempt to do so. If they cannot, then I don’t see how a fabricated speculative fiction could.

      Its silly to start a campaign against this movie since the most they are likely to accomplish is some free publicity. They can choose not to see it if they want (anyones right to do so) but their protest might just be counter productive.

    4. I apologize for making the assumption. It was your use of the word “you(r)” that made me assume this. For an example “your bible”. I still hold all else I said to be true.

      I concede that you have a valid point. Yes on one side of the coin those who’s faith falter based on a work of fiction, regardless of how much the author tries to claim or imply that it is fact. And yes those who do not have the faith and believe the lies don’t have any free thinking. But I think that is the problem. I don’t think the masses have free thinking. So much of what people believe is based solely on the word of the people that we have raised up on pedestals. Many people do not just get their information from educated presumably reliable sources. The most note worthy of these are movies. I don’t mean to repeat myself but I honestly don’t think most people realize how much they “learn” from movies and TV shows.

      My only point is this. The difference between what you are saying and what I am saying is that we both agree that believing a work of fiction is bad. However, I think that many of those who do not believe in Catholicism, will believe that the movie holds truths, which it does, but that they will take some of the lies away along with the truths. You on the overhand seem to believe that the movie will have little if any adverse affects on the aforementioned group of viewers.

    5. And anyone who is going to let fiction taint their perception of a real religion is just going to change their mind again the next time some peice of fiction comes around that says something different.

      Only the weak minded and gullable can be mislead so easily. The problem is that there is a lineup of people waiting to mislead them, so as much as you think this could hurt Catholicism, honestly if it did at all it wouldn’t be for long.

    6. @MandarinOrange

      I was raised as a Catholic and left the Church because of its repeated failure to put humanity before tradition.

      I’ve got no problem with your Christ, but I’ve got plenty of problems with His followers.

      If you’re worried about the small percentage of people out there who will consider this movie as fact, you’ve got some seriously misplaced priorities. There are people out there who are that irrational (and will simply believe something because it’s told to them), but it goes both ways. I always ask myself the question, how many Christians would there be in this world if that wasn’t the religion of their parents?

      It’s a shame people don’t use common sense more often.

  14. I find The Da Vinci Code quite a fun treasure hunt. I love those types of movies, like National Treasure, and Sahara. This one is more of a thinking movie, as some of the twists and turns really were quite nicely thought out. I’m eager to see this film.

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