The producers of Expelled! apparently invited a member of the New Orlando Sentinel to an early screening by accident. The result is another early glimpse at Ben Stein’s Intelligent Design flick that didn’t exactly impress so much as enrage the reviewer with its duplicity.
I lost track of the number of times Stalin’s image hit the screen, and in the ways the movie equated science with Darwinism with atheism with Hitler or Stalin. Subtle, it’s not.
The guy from the Sentinel did seem to think there was something to the “academic freedom” message of the film, however. Which means that it was effective enough to at least partially hoodwink even a hostile reviewer into thinking that ID proponents have been merely “shouted down” or even discriminated against on the basis of their beliefs. Educating viewers on this scam is going to have to be a major focus of efforts to counter this propaganda when it reaches a wider audience.
The reviewer also mentioned something I’d been previously unaware of: Stein was apparently involved in the utterly crackpot right-wing movement alleging that Bill Clinton was part of a huge murder conspiracy in Arkansas. He even wrote a forward to one of the books.
Stein wanted to call Expelled! “From Darwin to Hitler.” Perhaps a better title for this latest outing would have been “From One Loony Conspiracy Theory to Another.”
Addendum: More posts about more recent reviews: from Josh Timonen (his is nice and detailed), Richard Dawkins, & Greg Laden’s nearly endless linkfest about the infamous “Myers/Dawkins” showing in which Myers, a thanked interviewee, was refused entry to a showing.