Wednesday, October 5, 2016
‘My Scientology Movie’: Louis Theroux’s Revealing Expose, Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief review, Trial ordered for firm accused of requiring cult-like acts ‘Onionhead’ ruled a religion
- ‘My Scientology Movie’: Louis Theroux’s Revealing Expose On The Cult of Scientology
- My Scientology Movie review: Louis Theroux's giddy, Pythonesque jab in the ribs
- Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief review: 'an ocean of weirdness'
- Trial ordered for firm accused of requiring cult-like acts
- ‘Onionhead’ ruled a religion in Syosset discrimination case
‘My Scientology Movie’: Louis Theroux’s Revealing Expose On The Cult of Scientology
Kristine Moore October 4, 2016
It may seem rather damning to categorically point to one religion and refer to it as a cult, but if the trailer and interviews for Louis Theroux’s My Scientology Movie are anything to go by, Theroux has bravely revealed just what lengths Scientologists will go to in order to keep the media out of their lives and the public from knowing the truth about their organization.
Louis’s new film comes off the back of his recent documentary on Jimmy Savile, which aired on October 2 on the BBC. Theroux has always managed to elicit truth in the candidates he interviews, drawing them in and making them feel comfortable enough to speak honestly....
Theroux spent three years learning about Scientology before embarking upon My Scientology Movie. Scientologists, however, were not pleased when they discovered that they would be the target of his newest documentary. They are reported to have followed him around on the road wherever he went, shown up uninvited during filming, and even, rather amusingly, turned the cameras back at him by filming him while he was filming them.
In one interview, Louis seemed genuinely perplexed that anybody would be so critical of a documentary. After all, he said, if you disagreed with the Catholic Church over their cover-up of abuse, priests didn’t just turn up at your house unannounced and begin filming you. So why did Scientologists do this?
“One of the fascinating things about Scientology is that they fight back. It’s not like other churches – you know, Christianity, you think of turning the other cheek – well that idea doesn’t exist in Scientology, as far as I know. In fact, they believe that if you’re under attack as a Scientologist, you have a license to destroy that person.”....
My Scientology Movie review: Louis Theroux's giddy, Pythonesque jab in the ribs
By Tim Robey, Film Critic 4 October 2016
Louis Theroux versus the Church of Scientology. It’s a near-irresistible contest: the very face of deadpan scepticism, up against that many-headed hydra of indecipherable rage.
My Scientology Movie is the second documentary on the subject in recent months, following Alex Gibney’s more thorough and methodical Going Clear....
His efforts in Los Angeles to speak to their current membership meet with stony refusal, so only the apostates come forward: figures such as Marty Rathbun, former “Mister Fixit” of the organisation, and now Public Enemy No. 1, as far as the church and its much-feared leader, David Miscavige, are concerned....
Naturally lacking face-time with Miscavige or Tom Cruise – probably the world’s two most notorious Scientologists, with all due respect to Travolta – Theroux comes up with the neat gambit of auditioning various jobbing actors to play them both. Key public statements are read out, in what amount to screen-tests for a film Theroux and director John Dower don’t even end up making: the tests themselves do the job.
Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief review: 'an ocean of weirdness'
Tim Robey 26 June 2015
Alex Gibney’s Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief has also faced massive legal obstacles to even achieving a release. Though the film is heavily based on a pre-existing book, by the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Lawrence Wright, the Church of Scientology has devoted every shred of zeal its legal team can summon to prevent what it sees as an inaccurate and distorted account from being made public. In the UK, especially, largely thanks to the unreformed libel laws of Northern Ireland and Scotland, distributors have had a nightmare getting it okayed....
Gibney is too serious and analytical a filmmaker merely to turn this into a gawping session. He methodically takes us back to Scientology’s roots, laying down a potted biography of founder-philosopher L. Ron Hubbard....
Segueing from prolific pulp science-fiction writing to the Fifties Dianetics movement was the first step to setting up the Church of Scientology in 1953, which gave Hubbard much-cherished tax exemption; the movement’s repeated success in fending off the IRS, combined with burgeoning income from its members, gave it real financial muscle and reach into society across the world....
the very heart of a movement founded on selling fear – Hubbard would say the banishment of fear, but the trick of Scientology, as the film presents it, has always been to keep its members active and paying by keeping them afraid....
Trial ordered for firm accused of requiring cult-like acts
October 5, 2016
By The Associated Press
NEW YORK - (AP) -- A federal judge in New York City has ruled that a Long Island firm that provides discount medical plans must face a discrimination trial after workers said they were forced to pray, chant and participate in spiritual interpersonal workshops.....
The judge says the program, known as "Onionhead," used an approach that amounted to a religion.
The judge says workers described a cult-like environment with religious ceremonies that included burning incense to cleanse the workplace and dimming lights to prevent demons from entering.
An attorney for the firm says there's no proof workers were required to participate in Onionhead activities.
‘Onionhead’ ruled a religion in Syosset discrimination case
October 4, 2016 By John Riley
A Brooklyn federal judge has ruled that a Syosset health care business will have to face a discrimination trial for allegedly forcing workers to pray, chant and participate in spiritual interpersonal workshops known as “Onionhead” and “Harnessing Happiness.”
U.S. District Judge Kiyo A. Matsumoto said the program — represented by a logo with an anthropomorphic onion — amounted to a religion....