Idol Chatter

Idol Chatter

Well, There Goes the ‘Passion’ Sequel

Idol Chatter hardly needs to add to the barrage of quips, canned responses, and commentary about Mel Gibson’s anti-Semitic outburst during his arrest early Saturday morning. Sadly, even in the 21st century, and even from stone sober blatherers, talking crazy about “the Jews” is about as surprising as a cyclist failing a urine test and, pathetically, less consequential: Mel will continue to make movies and Americans will continue to go see them. The folks who might have abstained from his flicks because of his “Jews start all the wars” tirade likely already abstain because of Mel’s refusal to denounce his father’s Holocaust-denial views, and because of “The Passion” itself.


Two questions, however fall clearly into Idol Chatter’s orbit: how Mel’s late-night chat affects the future of Christian filmmaking, and how to summarize Mel’s career in the field, which is likely over. (His spokespeople are even sounding vague about his proposed series on the Holocaust, conceived as a sop to those who found “The Passion” disturbingly anti-Semitic.)

Much of the buzz “The Passion” created in Christian film circles, and the access to the wider cinema market it suddenly promised, will no doubt be harmed, if not quashed, by Mel’s mumblings of Saturday night. None of the Christian filmmakers I’ve encountered have betrayed any of Mel’s millennial mania, but if the scandal won’t end Mel’s career, skittish producers will be less willing to take risks with other, fledgling filmmakers who depict Jesus, lest they share the taint of anti-Semitism by association. This is a shame, since even those who disagreed with “The Passion” had to see that it promised, at least, more intelligent screen explorations of the Christian story and message.


Indeed, future films about Jesus (or old-fashioned Jesus figures) are the more sorely needed because of “The Passion.” Mel’s latest eruption betrayed just how lost he is amid the affinity many conservative Christians have developed toward Judaism and today’s Jewish people, beyond the old Christian right’s attachment to Israel as the custodian of the Holy Land. Theologically, some important evangelical voices see Jesus as one who came to the Jews as a Jew, bent on reforming his own religion and society; the world’s salvation, some new thinking goes, came not in despite of his co-religionists’ history, but completely on its terms, and on its wings. It’s an exciting and interesting route to go down, and one Mel’s ugly spiritual cataracts apparently prevented him from seeing.

  • Joey

    I know this doesn’t have to do with this blog, but I just saw that picture and thought…wow. Looks like Saddam being pulled out of the spider hole. I must remember to never grow a beard… I think this is a pity. While I didn’t get a big spiritual uplifting from it, I didn’t think THE PASSION was anti-Semetic, and it’s a shame that a movie that meant so much to so many has to be tainted by this kind of thing. (Sigh.) God bless.>

  • shotsie

    I loved the movie “the passion” of Christ, sry Mel had to get drunk and say those things,,he does need to go to confession, but I have been drunk 1 or 2 times my self, and some times ya say ,what ya really dont mean to say,If your gonna make a movie or speak of Jesus, at least live that life, Let this be a BIG LESSON to mel, I feel sry for him and his family to half to deal with this reality, I bought the movie and I intend on watching it over and over,it was put together very well, what im trying to say is, Mel get ya act together before its to late for you, get some help with the drinking , and maybe these people will forgive you, as I have.Lets just hope God has, he is a forgiving person, and all us Christians have forgiven you ! We have no right to judge you, right? “So be it !!”>

  • Anonymous Also

    ” I just saw that picture (of Mel) and thought… wow, looks like Saddam being pulled out of the spider hole…” — Joey LOL!!! That was the first thing I thought of as well, but didn’t say it, because I figured someone jump all over it and read thing that aren’t intended. That happens a lot on some of these blogs. GREAT COMMENT!! :-)>

  • Anonymous Also

    let’s try someone would jump all over it. That works better, doesn’t it??>

  • Lori

    I understand that saying negative things towards anyone is hurtful and wrong but we do have freedom of speech in this country and we are free to dislike whomever we choose! I think its a waste of time and energy the way everyone is making such a big deal over the comments he made. We have all said negative things about someone of different races and religions at one time in our life,there are more important things going on in the world why not spend your time and energy working on those problems instead of the babblings of a drunk celebrity!>

  • Kimber

    Regarding Mel’s picture – haven’t you ever noticed that the media chooses the picture they use based on the story? If it’s a positive story, it’s a positive picture – if it’s a condemning story, then it’s a condemning picture…and you all fell for it. Let’s not forget – Mel Gibson is HUMAN. We ALL fall now and then – but his falling is more public than ours – if he has, with a sincere heart, asked God to forgive him for the statements he made then it’s already done – God does forgive us just for the asking (thank you God). His statements are sad to be sure – Obviously there’s always been and always will be a huge difference in christianity vs Judaism – we will find out in the end who is right – until then – controversial statements will always be made between the two. Unfortunately, there WILL be a lot of people out there who will say, “see, christianity is a farce.” just because the human that is Mel Gibson isn’t perfect (and who among us IS?) That is the greatest damage done. But again, it’s DONE and we can’t reverse it. Choosing God or not is just that, a CHOICE. Living God’s way or not is a choice. He gave us free will to make those choices – good and bad, right and wrong. We ALL make mistakes – we ALL sin – and we ALL can be forgiven.>

  • Sophia

    I love Mel. We have all at one point or another said things we don’t mean. I am a recovering Alcoholic, and trust me, I hear things from my family, that I supposedly said and don’t know anything about. Let’s forgive, go on and Praise God that He loves us all. He is no respector of persons.>

  • Ann

    I loved the movie–but I never associated Mel Gibson with the Trinity. He is just a man–it was a human act to say something foolish. It seems many wanted this or something similar to happen in order to discredit the movie. The movie is still a magnificent work. Mel Gibson is still a man. Didn’t something like this happen in the movie? Groups of people sought revenge against someone in the public arena–Crucify Him! Crucify Him! Maybe an apology doesn’t mean anything anymore–let’s call webster and have that word taken out!. To Mel Gibson–actions speak louder than words.>

  • Donna

    I agree, we all are sinners and only by the blood or acknowledgement, of Jesus can we be where we need to be. Even though the Jews are the ones who set in motion the death of our Lord, we have to remember, how much God , and Jesus loved us, at any time, anytime, Christ could have came off the cross, there would have been no Roman, no man, or no Jew, who could have Kept Christ on the Cross, no one, if Christ had wanted to come off that cross, instead he willing died, for us all. What love indeed.>

  • Anthony

    They do not call alcohol a SPIRIT for nothing.>

  • Vicki

    I do not understand why the Jews are so upset about this. “The Passion” is the most Biblicly accurate movie of it’s topic to date. Mel even went so far as to have it done in the original language. As previously blogged, the Jews were the ones crying “Crucify Him, Crucify Him”, even though they, as a race, are blessed of God. They rejected Jesus as the Son of God and are still looking for the appearing of the Savior. Christians believe that Jesus is the Savior. To me, the issue involving the movie is moot. As for Mel spouting things while intoxicated, yes, he was wrong. And because he was a celebrity, his error is known worldwide. If one of us “regular” folks did that, it would never get out and we would never be publicly condemned. It would remain where it should be — between God and that person. I, for one, would like to see Mel publish an apology, but I am also willing to grant him human status –allowing him to make mistakes. This will not affect my appreciation of his movies.>

  • dovid

    “”The Passion” is the most Biblicly accurate movie of it’s topic to date.” I have heard Christians say that this is not so; the NT doesn’t devote hours to the crucifixion. Mel got that from the writings of a 19th century anti-Semitic nun. As for all the rest of the rantings, according to your own religion, if Jesus hadn’t died, you’d all be on your way to Hell, so perhaps you should thank the Jews instead. All kidding aside, from our perspective, the NT was written to kiss up to the Romans, and therefore had to soften their involvement and blame the Jews instead.>

  • dovid

    Incidentally, I’m glad they’ve cancelled the Holocaust movie. I heard there was still no script (maybe his father was writing it!), but the idea was done already in The Hiding Place, the story of Corrie tenBoom in Holland. I would rather not have to avoid another movie about Christians taking care of Jews.>

  • Nashville

    Mel has always admitted his addictions. He feels much and is obviously tormented by much. My first husband was an alcoholic and would rant about things that made absolutely no sense. No telling what was going on in Mel’s mind. I pray for him and his family and I pray for those of us who take perverse pleasure in trying to bring someone down. He is just a man after all.>

  • catherine zoltan

    This is all about bullies and kicking a man when he’s down. I have drank merlot and not recognized my email’s the next day! I am glad Mel has the opportunity to watch his enemies come out and kick him while he is down. There is a scarcity of new news these days, it falls on him! It’s O.K. Mel, lonely at the top! Don’t think everyone hasn’t had thier down days where the vultures fly in! Those unsupporative will tarnnish thier own image! I see the people who jump farward to get in a kick and it makes me sick!>

  • catherine zoltan

    Besides all of that, if the nice Jewish Boys in Hollywood are really so devoted why aren’t they stopping the holocaust the Jews are creating for themselves by sending off the young to die in Lebanon? They sit comfy in Hollywood kicking Mel while their people are being sacrificed by their own people! And they claim to be supporters! Imposters for academy awards!>

  • pat

    We all make mistakes and regret bad things we may have said. “LET HE WHO HAS NO SIN, CAST THE FIRST STONE.” ( GET IT ???) Mel apologized, but some people feel that he needs to be crucified. ENOUGH !!! Mel still gets my vote.>

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