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Holy Flying Circus - Comments

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 1 by Alan4discussion

I commented on the repeat of the original blasphemy TV debate over here on the "comedy" discussion http://richarddawkins.net/comments/882252 It followed the Holy Flying Circus re-enactment of it showing quite a close resemblance. The Bish and Muggins really do come over as pretty pathetic preachers who just disparage the film without ever getting the point or the humour! At times anyone who has seen "The Life of Brian" would have to wonder if they watched it at all, or if they had their hands over their eyes in" offended mode". Like many theist trolls explanations from the Pythons went straight past them without any connection to a brain.

Thu, 20 Oct 2011 21:36:22 UTC | #882637

El Bastardo's Avatar Comment 2 by El Bastardo

There should be a Youtube version of this for anyone in Non-Engurland

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 00:31:19 UTC | #882712

Quine's Avatar Comment 3 by Quine

Thanks for the link, El Bastardo. I am enjoying it very much. This is why I get my copy of Life of Brian out and watch it, irreligiously, every Easter. I first saw it when it opened in San Francisco in the summer of 1979, where it was packed and the audiences went wild cheering.

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 02:21:55 UTC | #882747

Rich Wiltshir's Avatar Comment 4 by Rich Wiltshir

This is really well written and produced. There's a huge number of one-liners and hilarious cameos, too.

xian #1 "i've had it verified, it's as real as the Turin shroud"

xian #2 "we could ask people to pray - you know - just let god sort it out"

xian #1 "yes, could do, let's not rely on that though"

Palin "I'm no more self-depricating than the next man"

Brilliant.

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 10:25:13 UTC | #882845

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 5 by SaganTheCat

I shall be watching again this weekend

this was scripted bt Tony Roche who worked on The Thick Of It in case anyone is still unsure

Personally I think the original Monty Python cast at their best couldn't have made it funnier [bracing myself for public stoning]

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 10:39:50 UTC | #882847

Spassy's Avatar Comment 6 by Spassy

I saw it at school and I must say, well done! A great depiction of the Python gang and some hilarious jokes with the same humorous style. The voice of the actor who portrayed Cleese was very identical to the real one. And the actor who played Eric Idle, looked a lot like the real actor, I mean, wow!

Overall the film was very entertaining and had some outrageous moments about religion (when Cleese spoke with the news paper salesman etc.).

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 12:47:21 UTC | #882867

hitchens_jnr's Avatar Comment 7 by hitchens_jnr

Best quote in the film (and a quote that should be displayed in huge capital letters inside every church in the world):

JOHN CLEESE: “There’s nothing wrong with being offensive! It’s part of life! If you get offended, so what? In a way it’s a good thing. It tells you you’re still alive, at least. Why can’t I say things to offend you? Why can’t I say ‘I don’t like your hair’? Or ‘your wife looks like a man and makes fucking awful soup’? What is the worst that could happen?"

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 20:00:54 UTC | #883006

hitchens_jnr's Avatar Comment 8 by hitchens_jnr

Also, if anybody's interested, the original TV debate about Life of Brian (Cleese and Palin v. Muggeridge and Bishop Stockwood) can be seen here:

link text

(UK only again!!!)

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 20:50:12 UTC | #883015

Stevehill's Avatar Comment 9 by Stevehill

I caught the debate last night on TV. I thought it as instructive - 32 years on - as to how much we both have and have not moved on.

Today's versions of Muggeridge and Bishop Stockwood would not simply be able to retreat behind bland nostrums saying it's "tenth rate comedy" and "offensive". At the very least a modern (UK) audience would expect a couple of debaters who actually had some arguments... while every word Cleese and Palin said would be just as valid today as it was then.

You could practically see them (doing whatever might be the 30-year old equivalent of) facepalming, as they restrained themselves from screaming "you dumb fucks, when are you going to grow up?!"

So, we've made some progress. Well done the Pythons. And George Harrison, without whom etc etc....

(He finally funded the film when no one else would, because he "wanted to see it").

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 21:04:05 UTC | #883021

rrh1306's Avatar Comment 10 by rrh1306

I all ways saw that name at the beginning of the credits but never thought it was the beatle him self. Watched a documentary about George the other day and sure enough it was. The Python wrote's the whole script and turned it in to the guy who was supposed to produce it and he said no way. "That script is blasphemous". George stepped in with out missing a beat and actually mortgaged his house to help put up the money. Who know where they'd of got the money to make such a movie in 1979 without the help of the great George Harrison.

Comment 9 by Stevehill :

So, we've made some progress. Well done the Pythons. And George Harrison, without whom etc etc....

(He finally funded the film when no one else would, because he "wanted to see it").

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 21:36:48 UTC | #883030

Rich Wiltshir's Avatar Comment 11 by Rich Wiltshir

Thanks for the link Hitchens-jr. Muggeridge and Stockwood were vulgar creeps weren't they?

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 21:57:36 UTC | #883034

hitchens_jnr's Avatar Comment 12 by hitchens_jnr

Comment 11 by Rich Wiltshir :

Thanks for the link Hitchens-jr. Muggeridge and Stockwood were vulgar creeps weren't they?

Odious. It's ironic that Muggeridge kept talking about how posterity would ignore the Life of Brian. Thirty years on, it's a revered and cherished movie, while the whole world has forgotten entirely about Muggeridge's tiresome apologetic screeds.

I like to think that Muggeridge and Stockwood's performance in the debate played a significant role in the decline of British Christianity.

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 22:04:27 UTC | #883036

Ignorant Amos's Avatar Comment 13 by Ignorant Amos

Comment 12 by hitchens_jnr

Odious. It's ironic that Muggeridge kept talking about how posterity would ignore the Life of Brian. Thirty years on, it's a revered and cherished movie, while the whole world has forgotten entirely about Muggeridge's tiresome apologetic screeds.

Indeed, I wonder what Muggeridge would've thought about how his hero, Madre Theresa turned out too?....fecked up on both accounts, boorish tit that he was.

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 23:41:05 UTC | #883046

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 14 by Alan4discussion

Comment 11 by Rich Wiltshir

Thanks for the link Hitchens-jr. Muggeridge and Stockwood were vulgar creeps weren't they?

I used to find Muggeridge on TV quite entertaining - when I turned the sound off and put a Beatles record on, - as I waited for next programme to start.

We used to think that Muggeridge earnestly "singing", "A Hard Day's Night"etc was much better than his usual patronising drivel!

Fri, 21 Oct 2011 23:44:53 UTC | #883047

mmurray's Avatar Comment 15 by mmurray

There is the Not the Nine O'Clock news take as well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asUyK6JWt9U

In this version the Bishop is undertake by conservative Pythonist's for his new movie General Synod's Life of Christ. Contains the immortal words "there's little enough real python around these days".

Michael

Sat, 22 Oct 2011 02:48:47 UTC | #883065

DavidXanaos's Avatar Comment 16 by DavidXanaos

could anyone put the video on youtube please, the UK server of my VPN ist unfortunetely doen sinde a few days.

Sat, 22 Oct 2011 08:24:32 UTC | #883095

hitchens_jnr's Avatar Comment 17 by hitchens_jnr

Comment 16 by DavidXanaos :

could anyone put the video on youtube please, the UK server of my VPN ist unfortunetely doen sinde a few days.

There's an incomplete (but still fairly substantial) chunk of the debate on YT here.

Sat, 22 Oct 2011 10:33:59 UTC | #883114

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 18 by Alan4discussion

Today - Saturday 22 Oct. BBC4 TONIGHT:

7.00pm David Attenborough - LIFE : marine invertebrates

9.00pm BBC4 "The Life of Brian"

followed at 10.30pm by "Holy Flying Circus"

Sat, 22 Oct 2011 13:38:09 UTC | #883144

Meira's Avatar Comment 19 by Meira

Religion has to be fiction - doesn't it? Why would there be so many versions if there was one true story to which we could cling? Given that is the case there can be no harm in expounding upon it, embellishing it, and, if we feel inclined, distorting it, unless ... Unless, unless in the process we cause offense. I'm not too keen on causing offense because it tends to defeat the object.

Making a joke about an obviously ridiculous concept such as that of heaven and hell, or that a supreme being can see everyone and everything they are doing, deserves to pilloried, ridiculed even, but if all that achieves to create a backlash from the offended, then little is gained. Better then to offer alternatives to religion, such as evolution, and Theosophy, dontcha luv Helena Blavatsy, or Neoplatonism as presented by Plotinus, that is Plato without theurgy. In that same vein there is the Matriarchy, a much older administration using the Sun for all it's energy needs that, in turn, is based on Christopher Jordan's Secrets of the Sun Sects.

The Python Team have done an excellent job in making us laugh at the ridiculous men in dresses, but the somewhat transparent device of substituting Brian for Christ fails to ovoid offense. A better weapon would be a swathe of alternate stories in book, film and TV that might nag at the closed mind, or the animations thereof that will appeal to the offspring of the closed minds.

Sun, 23 Oct 2011 05:24:57 UTC | #883300

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 20 by Alan4discussion

Comment 19 by Meira

A better weapon would be a swathe of alternate stories in book, film and TV that might nag at the closed mind, or the animations thereof that will appeal to the offspring of the closed minds.

Hi Meira,

I don't know if you saw the original Monty Python TV series, but it was noted for its humorous animations.

Sun, 23 Oct 2011 10:08:42 UTC | #883341

the great teapot's Avatar Comment 21 by the great teapot

just watched the original interview. I have to say i thought the Bishop was much better in dads army. muggeridge is as thick as bat shit. No wonder he attested to "mother" Teresa's miracle. he is quite clearly immune to reason as John Cleese tried to point out. I was also amused by the suggestion that " you wouldn't say that about Mohamed." correct me if i am wrong but at the time racism was pretty much the default position.

Sun, 23 Oct 2011 10:14:04 UTC | #883342

the great teapot's Avatar Comment 22 by the great teapot

Meira, a better weapon? I watched this film as an agnostic in my early teens. i have never considered religion as anything but a joke ever since. Job done JC and MP. I do agree however that Palins protestations about not taking the piss out of the myth that is christ are a little (ok very) disingenuous. Perhaps they wont convert but as the bishop correctly feared any 14 year old watching the film with a clean slate will not be inclined toward his mythology.

Sun, 23 Oct 2011 10:50:32 UTC | #883346

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 23 by Alan4discussion

I particularly liked the God to Jesus quip, in Holy Flying Circus - "You've turned the beer to water again"!

I'm not sure if Amos & aqilacane picked up on this over here! - You just gave me an idea for a wine label.- Christwater

Sun, 23 Oct 2011 18:41:17 UTC | #883447

Mr DArcy's Avatar Comment 24 by Mr DArcy

I hate to admit it, but I'm old enough to remember Malcolm Muggeridge. A bit like Cliff Richard, he never quite made it across the Atlantic. What a silly old twit he was! And a sinner at that. I never saw the original debate at the time, but I do remember Muggeridge was wheeled out for various opinion pieces on TV. Whilst I have nothing against hedonism, I found M. M.'s particular variety of moralising and hedonistic Christianity too much too bear. (And his voice didn't help).

I did enjoy both films last night! (No postings from me on this site last night!)

Always look on the bright side of life!

(Man U supporters will have to do that tonight having been beaten 6 -1 by Man City)

Sun, 23 Oct 2011 20:59:08 UTC | #883489

hitchens_jnr's Avatar Comment 25 by hitchens_jnr

Comment 24 by Mr DArcy :

(Man U supporters will have to do that tonight having been beaten 6 -1 by Man City)

Ha ha! Maybe there is a God!!!

Sun, 23 Oct 2011 22:08:54 UTC | #883498

passutoba's Avatar Comment 26 by passutoba

Quote-mining again, let's not forget the Terry Gilliam character....'That's one big motherfucking bishop!'

Thu, 27 Oct 2011 07:13:31 UTC | #884461

Paul92's Avatar Comment 27 by Paul92

just to point out Stephen Fry was playing God.

Mon, 19 Dec 2011 12:50:05 UTC | #900934

Saganic Rites's Avatar Comment 28 by Saganic Rites

Comment 27 by Paul92 :

just to point out Stephen Fry was playing God.

And that means what? If your point is that he's an atheist so for some bizarre reason shouldn't play a character that he doesn't believe in, he also played (brilliantly, I might add) Jeeves to Hugh Laurie's Bertie Wooster. Would you suggest that, as Jeeves is just as much fictional as God, then Fry shouldn't have played him either?

Or are you just telling us that Fry is in it?

Mon, 19 Dec 2011 13:19:34 UTC | #900941