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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Is 'Dogma' a dog?

Full of vulgar sex jokes, rough language and violence, Roman Catholic director Kevin Smith's new film, Dogma, was labeled "anti-Christian hate mail" by the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.

But Gene Phillips, a priest and professor of film at Loyola University, Chicago, says the league doesn't speak for the whole church and its protest brought Dogma publicity: "We can do more good by endorsing good films than slamming bad ones."

Is Dogma a dog? "I don't think it's a particularly good movie," he said. "But it's not harmful. If Dogma gets people to look at the mystery of faith, even in a sophomoric, satirical way — that's good."


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