Natural Made Killers
- By Ray Comfort
After the Columbine school massacre of thirteen people, Leonardo DiCaprio solemnly vowed never to star in another violent movie. Just after the violent murders, the U.K. Mirror reported:
Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio has renounced violent films after one of his early movies was linked to the Columbine school massacre. The actor has told aides he no longer wants to be considered for parts in any productions featuring death and destruction. The 'Titanic' star has been caught up in the wave of revulsion sweeping America after the slaughter of 12 pupils and a teacher at the school in the Denver suburb of Littleton. In the 1995 drama 'The Basketball Diaries,' DiCaprio played a teenage heroin addict who gunned down his teacher and classmates. His twisted screen character wore a full-length trench coat--just like those worn by Trenchcoat Mafia murderers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold who carried out the classroom killings two weeks ago. The parents of three pupils shot dead in 1997 in a school in Kentucky have already sued the makers of 'The Basketball Diaries' for $100 million. The families of the 13 Columbine victims are expected to follow suit, insisting the film inspired teenage misfits Harris and Klebold to mount their terrible attack. Worried British video distributors had the entire classroom killing sequence cut from the film rather than risk sparking copycat murders in the U.K. (1)
Susan Sarandon warned,
Movies are important; and they're dangerous because we're the keepers of the dreams. You go into a little dark room and become incredibly vulnerable. On the one hand, all your perspectives can be challenged. You can feel something you couldn't feel normally. [They] can encourage you to be the protagonist in your own life. On the other hand, [they] can completely misshape you. (2)
So why then hasn't Hollywood stopped making violent movies? Director Francis Ford Coppola reveals why:
I made the most vulgar, entertaining, actionful, sense-a-ramic, give them a thrill every five minutes, sex, violence, humor, because I want people to come see it. (3)
After Columbine, Hollywood didn't change its agenda of violence, even in the face of these massive law suits. It has the world's best lawyers and the money to defend itself. It knows that we are vulnerable, but it also knows that we will pay up at the box office.
Fans shape their bodies and souls to be like those whom they love. They want to talk like them, dress like them, look like them, and some will even kill like them. The little girl, who imitates the way Britney Spears looks, dresses, and sings like her, really does think Britney is like her on-screen image. She and millions of others don't separate the image from the real person. It's a mystery to them when their idol divorces her husband, puts her self into a treatment center, and shaves her head.
An actor can even have a mesmerizing influence over much of their adoring public. The fans have faith in their idol--they believe what is said about God, Jesus Christ, and the Bible. If the actor says that he protects his kids from the Bible or that he hates God, they don't separate the idol from the actor.
Look at these few examples (among many) of Hollywood's distain for the God of the Bible:
In The Mosquito Coast (4) staring Harrison Ford and River Phoenix, a weirdo calling people "brother" passes Harrison Ford and some kids a Bible, and says, "There you are. I've got a gift for you. It's the latest--The Blue Jeans Bible." Harrison Ford takes it and says, "Look at this, kids. It's just what I've been warning you about." (5)
In Dogma (6), a comedy staring Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, the comedy gets a little serious when Matt Damon says:
Now the carpenter, which is an obvious reference to Jesus Christ, who was raised a carpenter's son, he represents the Western religions . . . Organized religion destroys who we are by inhibiting our actions . . . by inhibiting our decisions, out of, out of fear of some, some intangible parent figure who, who shakes a finger at us from thousands of years ago and says, and says, "Do it - Do it and I'll f-----' spank you. (7)
Robin Williams in Patch Adams looks to the heavens and says,
You created man. Man suffers enormous amounts of pain. Man dies. Maybe you should have had a few more brain-storming sessions prior to creation. You rested on the seventh day. Maybe you should've spent that day on compassion. You know what? You are not worth it.
In The Simpsons (8), one of the kids is asked to thank God for a meal. He says, "Dear God. We paid for all this stuff ourselves, so thanks for nothin.'"
Hollywood is fostering a growing hostility towards Christians and influencing an entire generation. See if you can spot the common thread running through modern movies:
• George Clooney (9) asks a man in a cheap suit (with a large patch over one eye), "What kind of work do you do?" The man enthusiastically answers, "Sales Mr. McGill, sales! And what do I sell? The truth, every blessed word of it--Genesis right on down to Revelation. That's right, the Word of God. Let me tell you there is d-mn good money in, in times of woe and want."
• A man in a cheap black suit, wearing large-brimmed black hat, with really weird eyes (holding a large wooden cross in one hand, with another large cross pinned to his suit) stands on a New York sidewalk and says, "The good Lord still loves me. He loves all of His children. Why He loves you . . . Help me! He's burning me alive. He's burning me! "
• A devious-looking weirdo dressed in white, with long blond hair and a large cross around his neck is preaching on a sidewalk. A sane-looking and mystified Jodi Foster slowly walks by and looks at them as they chant a slow and horrible-sounding "Praise God, praise the Lord, praise God." Like a salivating wolf, the weirdo then drips with lust as he looks at her.
Michael Medved Film critic and author of Hollywood vs. America said,
But the attitude you have from Hollywood, where every time someone in today's world is portrayed as some kind of religious believer, that person is viewed as some kind of a crook, or deviant, or weirdo, or an ugly person, or something is wrong with him or her, it's poisonous. (10)
Worth A Thousand Words
A picture is worth a thousand words, so let's look at one picture, particularly its script. This is edited from an award-winning R-rated movie called Blow, directed by Ted Demme. It is the story of George Jung, the man who established the American cocaine market in the 1970's. As you read it, ask yourself why Mohamed, Buddha or the Dalai Lama didn't make it into the script. Why only Jesus? And why use His name in conversation anyway? Johnny Depp is "George" and Penelope Cruz is "Mirtha":
Note: three times the "f" word was used in conjunction with the name of Jesus:
Jesus Christ. Jesus ------- Christ.
MR. T (CONT'D)
MR. T (CONT'D)
Jesus, ---- me running!
Jesus Christ, George, I don't see you in two years . . .
Jesus ------- Christ, Diego.
Oh, Jesus Christ, George.
Oh, Jesus, Get me a 12-lead.
Jesus, is that Mirtha!?
Jesus, George, fifteen percent. That's an extra two-hundred large. (11)
The director, Ted Demme died less than a year later after the movie's release, while playing basketball. Cocaine was found in his system. (12)
Wheel of Fortune's host, Pat Sajak (13) has been working in Hollywood for more than thirty years. He said,
To quote Mr. [Rob] Reiner (14), "Movies are basically advertising cigarettes to kids." No knock on Rob. In fact, I agree with him. But why is smoking open to censorship and not these other issues? And what happened to Hollywood's argument that movies and TV shows don't cause bad behavior, they just reflect it? . . . . The answer is, there is no answer. It's just Hollywood being Hollywood. It's monumental hypocrisy. Kids can't pick up bad habits from what they watch...oh, except for smoking.
Directed By Hollywood
Here are two more transcripts. They weren't written directly by Hollywood. They are from two young amateur film-makers--Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, made prior to the assault on Columbine High School, assembled from the Columbine Report and Time Magazine: (15)
Note: Four times the "f" word when referring to these Christians and to Jesus:
Dylan: "I don't like you, Rachel and Jen [two of their victims], you're stuck up little b------, you're ------- little...Christian, Godly little whores!" (16)
Eric: "Yeah...'I love Jesus! I love Jesus!' -- shut the ---- up!"
Dylan: "What would Jesus do? What the ---- would I do..?" (he acts like he's shooting the camera with his hand, with sound to accompany it)
Eric: "I would shoot you in the mother-------- head! Go Romans! Thank God they crucified that -------."
Eric and Dylan: "Go Romans!" "Go Romans!!" "Yeah!!" "Wooo!"
On April 20th, 1999, 30 minutes before the attack (Evidence item #200):
Eric: "Say it now."
Dylan: "Hey mom. I gotta go. It's about a half an hour till judgment day. I just wanted to apologize to you guys for any c---- this might instigate as far as (inaudible) or something. Just know I'm going to a better place. I didn't like life too much, and I know I'll be happy wherever the f--- I go. So I'm gone. Good-bye. Reb..." (17)
The only difference between the Columbine killings and Leonardo DiCaprio's on screen killings was that the two murderers targeted only Christians. I wonder why.
From Hollywood Be Thy Name, due for publication May/June 2007
4. Nominated for 2 Golden Globes.
6. Six nominations, including "Independent Spirit Award."
8. The Simpsons is an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning American animated sitcom created by Matt Groening for the Fox Network. Thank God It's Doomsday typifies screen-writer's message. God is the almighty ruler of the Universe. He once attempted to flood Springfield (the Simpson's home town), but was stopped when Reverend Lovejoy showed that God was the path to good, and also once chose to end the world. This time, he was stopped by Homer Simpson, who requested him to turn back time and leave the apocalypse off for a few years. God has two aides, Colonel Sanders and Buddha, although he is seen with Jesus in Heaven.
9. For George Clooney's beliefs, see What Hollywood Believes by Ray Comfort
10. Hollywood Unmasked--www.Goodfight.org
13. Host of Wheel of Fortune, television production company owner, radio station owner (Annapolis, MD), music publisher, board member of the American Cinema Foundation
14. As the son of multi-talented comedic genius Carl Reiner (Your Show of Shows), Rob Reiner instantly outgrew his father's legacy to establish himself as an independent force in multiple facets of the entertainment industry.
16. "If the world hates you, you know that it hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love his own: but because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, the servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do to you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me." (John 15:18-21)
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Re: Natural Made Killers
Movies,tv,songs,books,etc all are a distraction,temptation,seduction,upon us.During h school I wasintroverted +in a whirlwind of pain, alcoholic father back in forth in my life. I sunk into books,television,food anything as a distraction. I was teased ridiculed in school even worldly kids in my youth group at church. You know that song Jeremey spoke in class today.Well I thought of shock,blow away every kid caused me pain or myself,but I remembered what I'd been taught when I was lil girl by my momma,what missionarys(in school)taught us bible stories and songs,what I learned in vbs,now take away all that15 yrs later+what does todays youth have stopping them from adapting to what they see.eyes are the gateway to the soul song we used to sing Be careful little eyes what you see,is true. It affects even us ChristiansI became addicted to home improvement shows a few yrs ago couldn't turn it off innocent as it seemed to others holy spirit spoke to me I was letting spirit of covetous in. woh. Renew your mind in Christ how much of Christ does our mind hold and how much of world? Lord led me to writing cartoon book last year called HELP ME GOD I'M A TV JUNKEE I haven't finished it but I got to, Wouldn't know who to send it to if I tried I'm no ministry big wig still struggling with the same temptation of tv,music,movies we all are in,but what about kids that don't know Christ how is this shaping their lives?look at music videos crime and sex for teenagers friends with benefits slang look how it spread, commercials of new products and toys to children the covet spirit,the eastern culture in cartoons of spiritism and powers what is that grooming them for,the immoral lifestyle that started in talk shows now tv shows,movies,school seminars books,lessons that is centered in the word tolerance until is is common talk,could go on forever yes those two boys are a reflection of what can go wrong without Christ. I tried to get petitions to get prayer + bible reading back in school after Columbine had a page worth of signatures I sent it to one of the biggest churches in town they nver sent it back the apathyhurts,God bless those that are doing something now in the struggle of shaping young minds the right way.
|Posted On: 03/21/07 04:45:40 PM
||Age 32, OK
Re: Re: Re: Natural Made Killers
You are so right...satan is using the media to get to the hearts and minds of our children. The biggest concern I have is that we, as adults, assume we're catching everything that's thrown our way. Based on what we've seen over the years that's highly unlikely. We got rid of the television set in our home 17+ years ago, distancing ourselves from the clamour. Now when we go over to a house that has a TV (which is uncommon) its alarming to see the variety of vile, unbelievably subtle, verbal and visual 'seed-sewing' methods being used - even in the vast majority of 'good' shows. Truly it really is a frog-in-the-pot type of syndrome. We never would have had this perspective if we had left a TV in the house. Frankly, I can't see how God would revive this nation while His children are mired in the muck of the world. That's an opinion, but one rooted in Scripture - "friendship with the world is enmity with God".
|Posted On: 03/16/07 11:00:01 AM
||Age 49, TX
Re: Natural Made Killers
I grew up feeling turned off by pop culture even before the Lord saved me, but on the other hand I grieve that I have spent so many hours immersed in it via TV, films and radio. If I could get back even half that time I wasted. I purposely don't have cable, not because I am afraid of being temped by the bad stuff, but because I know I would spend endless hours watching "good" stuff.
My interactions whith Christian friends and family members on this subject of media has left me frustrated. Some see it only as "entertainment" and chaffe at the idea that there is an agenda (worldview) being communicated by media. I have had heated arguments about this. Just after Columbine I was in the home of a Christain man who owns a small media company. I showed him an article by David Grossman (author, "On Killing") My friend rejected the argument that media influennces poeple to do violence. With all due respect, when the media reps say this, they come across to me as eithter blantant liers or mentally ill. After all, they make a lot of money on Advertising on the very premise of influencing people!
I have read "Hollywood vs America" by Michael Medved, and other books and articles. I wish more folks would listen. But if we as Christians want to overcome the slanderous way we are potrayed we need to in all honesty BE MORE LIKE CHRIST! I just left a church because of disappointment with fellow Christians. I just had a conversation with a profane co-worker who rejects God on the basis of all the hypocrisy he saw in church as he was growing up. On the bright side I have a friend who was a pastor's kid, and rebelled in her teen years. In her late twenties she came back to the Lod and is now serving with Campus Crusade. An incident which was a turning point in her life was when she was challenged by a friend about the kind of media she let polute her thinking. It made sense to her and set her on a journey to see her own sin and need for the Savior. Now she serves HIM passionately!
|Posted On: 03/15/07 06:19:12 PM
||Age 46, TX
Re: Natural Made Killers
I have always believed that movies have a powerful influence on people. Especially on children and teenagers. Hollywood wants to say that they only make the films and people choose to see them. And if they act out the films in real life then it is not Hollywood's fault. I think film studios should be treated like tobacco companies. Prove the link between movies and behavior and then make them pay. They'll stop making those types of movies I bet!
I have a police officer friend that told me he witnessed a huge increase in street racing after a very popular movie glorifying street racing was released. The police department was already braced for it before the movie was released based on their experience with the effects these movies have. It proves the point. Peace.
|Posted On: 03/15/07 04:04:27 PM
||Age 47, FL
Re: Natural Made Killers
I'm conflicted...because i think it is a good idea for someone to intake less, much less, television and movies than the average person does, but i don't want to impose regulations or restrictions on hollywood the way many christians want to. I also don't have a problem with criticisms of christianity, or anything for that matter, in the context of intelligent and thought-provoking films. its the unintelligible drivel like 300 that i think we are wise to avoid.
Also, i don't think movies caused columbine. Sure culture at large played a part, but these were kids who weren't happy with culture, not exactly carbon copies of the main characters from the movies described. No, these were individuals who needed more attention from their parents, at the least, and a more accepting loving environment that focused on including them, rather than exlcuding them
|Posted On: 03/15/07 03:50:51 PM
||Age 19, VA
Re: Re: Natural Made Killers
I totally agree, that is why in our house we only have SkyAngel TV. Sometimes the grandchildren are unhappy but they know we stand my our convictions. Why pay for cable when over half is not fit to watch? I save money and time this way. I don't attend movies either unless it is the Very few we have offered like "Facing the Giants" etc. The last "Kids" movie I saw was The Bridge to Taibithia can anyone remember the scene where they talked about "God" in it. Did it imply that a loving God who created this beautiful earth could not or would not damn anyone to hell (in their words)? I discussed it with my grandchild after the movie,so she could see how the media is intent on puting Christians in a bad light, that it would sneak in little things in any movie.
|Posted On: 03/15/07 12:49:38 PM
||Age 55, OH
Re: Natural Made Killers
Ray, could degrading our Lord and his precious Son have anything to do with the preponderance of Jewish movers, shakers, and decision makers in the film industry? Please don't take this as prejudice; it is not. I just wonder, and am quite curious as to how other Christians may feel about this aspect of the film industry...
|Posted On: 03/15/07 10:39:56 AM
||Age 53, AZ
Re: Natural Made Killers
Ray - amen. Its so sad to hear how the world treats our Lord's name...not too unlike what we understand happened the day He went to Calvary. Indeed, there is nothing new under the sun. We can not change what the world thinks, except when given the opportunity to share the Gospel that indeed changes the heart.
But, as we live in the world we can make the choice by either turning this garbage off the TV screen or by not going to movies. The thief can enter the strongman's house only when the strongman is bound. As Christians our lust for entertainment of this sort binds us to it, and allows the devil to the steal precious treasure in our homes - our wives and children. How? Just like this...the subtile innuendos, slurs, and mockery of our Lord.
|Posted On: 03/15/07 10:21:24 AM
||Age 49, TX
Re: Natural Made Killers
Ray is on target as always. I always have a hard time buying the Hollywood lie that entertainment does not influence behavior. If it did not, Hollywood would not have such put so much of their political and ideological agenda in their movies, TV and music.
|Posted On: 03/15/07 04:53:24 AM
||Age 37, TX
Re: Natural Made Killers
It breaks my heart to see our Lord and Savior's name used in such a way. It's hard for me to see how people can use His precious name the way they do. Thank you for reminding me why I stay away from the theater. (Of course I did go to the Nativity Story and I want to see Amazing Grace, but there are too few movies like those out there.) I agree with you that Christians are a target to those wanting to portray us in a negative light. Thanks for keeping us informed.
|Posted On: 03/14/07 10:44:35 PM
||Age 45, OK