I obviously have Golden Compass on the mind. Consequently, I’ve been surfing the web, reading this and that. Unfortunately, as anyone who has ever googled “The Golden Compass” knows, I have witnessed a barrage of headlines like “Catholic League urges Golden Compass boycott” and ” ‘Golden Compass’ criticized as anti-Christian.”
I wasn’t going to write anything about this, because I feel as if even the slightest acknowledgement of this irrelevant crap validates it in some way, but I changed my mind. So shut up.
I’m not going to defend The Golden Compass (book and maybe film) from the validity of Christian critics’ claims – Pullman, the author of the This Dark Materials trilogy, isn’t shy about his atheism nor is he in his contempt of all things totalitarian in nature. And I’m not going to attack The Golden Compass film for not being true enough to the”anti-church hierarchy” that is such a large part of the books – I’m almost certain Pullman okayed the script, so, who cares?
What I do want to say is this: why would anyone in their right mind give a shit about what these conservative Christian groups think? Or do? And I’m not saying this from a political standpoint, I’m saying it from a purely economical standpoint:
“The film, opening Dec. 7, already has raised the ire of one outspoken conservative, Catholic League President William Donahue. Earlier in October, he called on Christians to boycott the movie because it will ‘seduce’ parents into buying Pullman’s ‘pro-atheist’ book. Thus far, Donahue’s blanket mailing to media and other religious groups of his exhaustive 30-page brochure titled ‘The Golden Compass: Agenda Unmasked’ seems to have done little more than help promote the film.
Of course, all that hubbub about Harry Potter promoting witchcraft to kids didn’t stop that franchise from becoming the highest-grossing film series of all time. But Donahue’s protest got the attention of James Dobson’s evangelical Christian behemoth Focus on the Family, the moral activists who review films and books for an audience of 5 million – though even that group’s protests of Fox Searchlight’s 2004 film on pioneering sex researcher “Kinsey” and the TV cartoon “SpongeBob Squarepants” didn’t significantly affect viewership of either.” – Macon.com
So, a lack of “Christian” approval doesn’t effect how successful a film is, generally speaking. Thier outcries don’t matter. They’re irrelevant. They’re not even news worthy, but for some reason they keep getting press. Lame.
What does matter, however, is The Golden Compass trailer.