T: If you have ever spent more than 10 minutes with me, you have probably discovered my deep love for documentaries. Although there are some serious duds and exploitation out there, it never ceases to amaze (and entertain) me when watching the very real stories of the very often scary world we live in. A friend of mine suggested this film after discussing recently watched documentaries, and I couldn’t be more thrilled that she did. This documentary has everything one would want to watch in a nonfiction tale: an arguably crazed, science-fiction writer who seems more appropriately casted in one of his own stories than the real world; the nuances of a very complex ‘religion’; celebrity hype (notably Tom Cruise and John Travolta); and series of candid stories organized in a very enticing way. Admittedly, most of my understanding of Scientology has been in relation to gossip magazines and I was excited about discovering more and more about this curious and controversial religion. What I ended up learning about was so much more. I really don’t want to spoil anything – especially for those that might have been just as clueless as I – but I will tell you that it will haunt your dreams and make you realize just how easy it would be to create your own kind of cult. I will say for those naysayers who may be apt to criticize this style of storytelling, the documentary does an excellent job in terms of research and expert witness (many of whom left the church after 30 years!) testimony. This one packs a punch and has the merit and credibility to back all the blows.
RV: Before I watched this documentary, I thought of Scientology much the same way I thought of people who live in nudist colonies. They are kooky for sure, but as long as they aren’t harming anyone, to each his own. I’m not normally a person that wants to cast judgments on anyone’s beliefs, so I am generally a skeptic when I watch documentaries that are trying to expose a company or a religion for gross wrongs because I know how spin works. I also know that documentaries can make eating a McDonald’s burger seem as bad as murdering babies. With that being said, I’m a full believer in this documentary. It sets out to expose Scientology in ultra negative light for its crimes against people since its conception, but it also does it in a way that is reasonable and backed with a lot of credible witnesses and evidence. In fact, Scientologists actually prove the documentary with their own rebuttals to the documentary as was foretold by the already victims of the church’s harsh propaganda methods. I used to laugh at Tom Cruise and his couch jumping antics, but now I pity him and the Truman Show-like prison that he is kept in.
5 Red Vines: Freudian Therapy plus a science fiction writer’s nightmare equals a fucked up religion.
5 Twizzlers: Truth is truly stranger than fiction. #savetomcruise