The Stoning: Real human rights vs. counterfeit human rights
One of the things that is most execrable about Canada's so-called human rights commissions is that they trade on the words "human rights". And, like counterfeit money devaluing real money, their counterfeit human rights, like the "human right" not to be offended, devalue the term that once was reserved for real rights like freedom of religion, the equality of men and women before the law, and the right to be free from violence.
Which is why I'm excited about a new movie by Cyrus Nowrasteh called The Stoning of Soraya M. Unlike most of Hollywood, which is dead silent in the face of human rights violations in the Muslim world (or, in cases like Sean Penn, positively excuse the fascism of foreign dictators), Nowrasteh has created a blistering indictment of the ayatollahs' misogyny and violence. Take a look at this trailer:
That's pretty powerful and it looks beautifully produced. The journalist is played by Jim Caviezel, from The Count of Monte Christo. He also played Jesus in Mel Gibson's The Passion.
Could The Stoning be another surprise box office hit, like The Passion was? No big studio would touch that -- they either didn't understand Christianity or were hostile to it. Gibson pressed on alone, and created the top-grossing R-rated movie in history -- over $600-million worldwide.
I don't think The Stoning has the kind of near-universal appeal that a story about Jesus does. But based on the trailer, above, I think it will do suprisingly well. Movie-goers have indicated time and again that they're not interested in the anti-war movies that Hollywood has served up for the past five years -- almost all of them have been box office bombs. The closest thing to a pro-war movie in that time was 300, the biggest R-rated movie of 2007. It spoke with moral clarity and confidence about defending western values against illberal hordes from Persia. It was based on history, of course, but its similarities to today's battles were crystal clear to moviegoers.
I think that there is a pent-up demand for movies that explore stories like these -- stories of theocratic brutality that the Sean Penns of the world would surely have produced had the bad guys been, say, priests and popes instead of imams and ayatollahs.
I'm told the movie opens in June. For those who care about true human rights, it looks like a must-see. And as to Canada's embarrassing HRCs? I think it's more likely that they'd charge the movie with "hate speech" against radical Islam than go see it.