Sunday, December 20, 2009

Hanging or Banging: the Passion of Mel Gibson's Cross

     Remember when ultraconservative Catholic Mel Gibson was promoting his film The Passion of the Christ and defending the film's graphic violence, which many categorized torture porn?  Gibson spoke piously of the film's rib-stripping violence as a tool to help increase people's respect for Jesus' "sacrifice" on the cross, which he called the "ultimate hero story."

     Five years later, Gibson is (unfortunately) back to acting, staring in his usual revenge flicks.  This time the Payback meets Ransom meets Conspiracy Theory meets Mad Max parts 1, 2, and 3 meets Lethal Weapon parts 1, 2, 3, and 4 plot is rehashed in Edge of Darkness, where apparently Gibson plays a father on a rampage to avenge his daughter's death by an agency of the government (The Patriot anyone?).

     Remember all that passion and respect for the cross and suffering of Jesus?  Well,  like Prince Edward's lover in Braveheart, even Mel has thrown it out the window, when in a not-very-turn-the-other-cheek voice he bullies a "bad" guy in the Edge of Darkness trailer and demeans his own savior's cross threatening: "You had better decide if you're hanging on the cross or banging in the nails!" 

     A star with Gibson's power could easily have demanded a rewrite of such a demeaning line, that is, unless devout Catholic Christians enjoy having their savior's death fleeced for the sake of Hollywood's profit.

     Skip ahead to 2:20 for the hypocrite's "hanging or banging" comment. 


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