Mr. Movie

The irreverent 'Religulous' isn't

Bill Maher finds religion a deterrent to the progress of humanity.

From Christianity to Islam to Hinduism and Buddhism, limited human beings claim to interpret the will of God and it’s sometimes hard to see much deity in their actions.

Christianity is the main target of Religulous. Maher is troubled by a preacher wearing enough gold to fill Fort Knox.

Was Jesus anti-gay?

What about speaking in tongues?

Did the people who wrote the New Testament know Jesus? Maher doesn’t think they did. He also ponders original sin, a snake in the Garden that talks and was it really an apple.

His intelligent questions deserve intelligent answers. That’s where the cracks appear in his documentary.

Does Maher seek out great minds that will offer stimulating debate and thought-provoking opinion? No.

Ordinary people with few communication skills are his target, and he often edits their interviews out of sequence to make them look as stupid as possible.

The lack of fair play and cheap shots bother me. But that’s Maher’s modus operandi. Though I’m not close to being a religious scholar, there are answers to his questions and I almost called his producer to offer a debate. Then, I remembered Maher is not interested in any opinion but his own.

Mr. Movie rating: 4 stars

Rated R for mature themes, language. It opens Friday at the Columbia Mall 8.

5 stars to 4 1/2 stars: Must see on the big screen

4 stars to 3 1/2 stars: Good film, see it if it's your type of movie.

3 stars to 2 1/2 stars: Wait until it comes out on video.

2 stars to 1 star: Don't bother.

0 stars: Speaks for itself.