Saturday, March 08, 2008

The video that the "Church" of Scientology tried to suppress.

Gawker.com has the Tom Cruise Scientology video that's caused such a stir lately.

I have mixed feelings about this sort of thing. On the one hand I take religious liberty seriously. Cruise has taken some knocks for his faith and I tried to imagine how I'd feel if this was a video of someone talking about his faith in Christ. On the other hand...he comes off as stupid and possibly crazy. Add to the mix the bizarre nature of Scientology and it thuggish tactics toward it's opponents and you're left with something rather unpleasant.

Warning: There's no nudity or foul language in he video but if you watch it you'll probably never want to see a Tom Cruise movie again. I'll miss A Few Good Men.

h/t the wife.

2 comments:

Thorsten said...

Dear Mike,
I've actually seen the three hour video where the clips are taken from. The part with Tom Cruise is half an hour and he doesn't come out in that as he does in that clipped "secret" version.
The original video has been available for viewing in any Scientology church since October 2004 and some places it has also been playing on large flatscreens to the street.
The "secret" idea came about because it was edited and posted on YouTube and the church's lawyers sent a letter to YouTube to remove it because it was copyrighted work.
One might ask oneself, who posted the video and why did they edit it?

Mike Stajduhar said...

Your point is well taken. With proper editing almost anyone can be made to appear foolish. Still-and this is the part that's difficult for me to get past-in the extended sequences in the "YouTube cut" of the video he comes off as unhinged. It's true I haven't seen the full length version-nor am I likely to. It's possible to make judgments about the character and intelligence of people without viewing their every utterance. We all do this every day. Sometimes those judgments are wrong but it's a necessary compromise between rash decision making and paralyzing self doubt.

I guess my complaint about Cruise is not that he's a Scientologist-Kristie Alley, Anne Archer, Isaac Hayes, Jason Lee, John Travolta and many others appear to be committed Scientologists without making fools of themselves. Rather, it's that Cruise comes off as deeply disturbed and in desperate need of that which he abhors-psychiatric counseling.