In terms of early Christian history, [TDVC’s version] is not uncomparable to Holocaust denial, to claiming that it was really the Jews who were oppressing the Nazis (or, at least, “we can’t be sure” who was persecuting whom). Yet the meme that “it’s only a movie” or “it’s just fiction” has largely obscured the fact that the conspiracy-theory conceits of The Da Vinci Code are by and large not novelist Dan Brown’s own flights of fancy, but are based on a lunatic-fringe view of history set forth in “non-fiction” books like Holy Blood, Holy Grail and The Templar Revelation.
While these books have about as much credibility as the likes of Did Six Million Really Die? or The Hoax of the Twentieth Century, which is to say zero, many people who would find the raving anti-Semitism of the latter an insuperable obstacle in a thriller seem willing to overlook the raving anti-Catholicism of the former in The Da Vinci Code.
Imagine a popular thriller based on the version of history set forth in The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, with a secret cabal of Jewish leaders conspiring to destroy Christianity and establish a global government to rule the world. . .
A few years ago, the release of The Passion of the Christ generated much discussion and concern regarding the question of possible anti-Semitism in the film. Yet, perhaps strangely, while critical reception of The Da Vinci Code has so far not been kind, most reviews seem to be sticking to safe, uncontroversial charges that the film is “boring” and “talky,” while avoiding the more pressing question of anti-Catholicism.
The review is excellent: uncompromising and smart, though it’s not really a review. It’s more of an essay. It concludes with this ancedote:
Catholic writer Mark Shea tells an anecdote about a college bull session among students at Central Washington University over The Da Vinci Code. “Even if it’s just fiction,” a student opined, “it’s still interesting to think about.”
To which another student replied: “Your mother’s a whore.” And then, to the first student’s stunned incredulity, he added, “And even if that’s just fiction, it’s still interesting to think about.”
Amy Welborn has also weighed in. Her best line, also dealing with the movie’s version of early Christian history:
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This is more than just silly movie-making. It’s a serious lie, akin to maintaining that Africans strolled on to slave ships because they wanted to go west.