Chrisitian Civic League calls for boycott of theaters

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AUGUSTA (AP) – The Christian Civic League of Maine is urging a ban of movie theaters in preparation for the upcoming release of “The Da Vinci Code.”

People should boycott all movie theaters, even those not showing Ron Howard’s movie, to make a point about the “deplorable state of the movies in general,” said Michael Heath, the organization’s executive director.

“Adding to the need for a boycott is the current trend in movies to exalt and extol every form of immorality and vice, while relegating all that is noble in man to insignificance. Among the virtues and human emotions which find no admittance to the movie theaters of Maine are honor, love, duty and patriotism,” Heath said.

Heath is not the only one concerned about “The Da Vinci Code.” Critics say the book and movie are full of historical and theological errors about Jesus Christ and the Roman Catholic Church. The movie adaptation of Dan Brown’s book is due for release on May 19.

J.P. Devine, movie critic for the Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel newspapers, said boycotts are nothing new. He recalled that the Catholic Legion of Decency condemned the movie “The Moon is Blue” in 1953 because the word “virgin” was used.

While he believes such boycotts are “preposterous,” he said it’s not necessarily a bad thing for the movie industry.

“Hollywood loves it. There is nothing they’d like better than to have a movie boycotted,” said Devine, of Waterville.

“The Da Vinci Code,” which contains a mix of code-breaking, art history, religion and mystical lore, explores the theory that Jesus had a child with Mary Magadalene, and that the blood line has been kept secret.

Heath said he has not seen the movie, nor read the book. His criticisms, he said, are based on reviews and others’ descriptions of the book.

Heath is hopeful others will join in the boycott and it will be effective.

“People are waking up,” he said.

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