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Palermo is saved.

Bill Maher begins Religulous by saying he's intent on finding out why some otherwise smart people are religious. Then he spends most of the movie talking to people who can barely articulate a thought. The mission statement was more interesting. But what ends up saving Religulous happens unknowingly of Maher and director Larry Charles' often smarmy, sometimes amusing interrogation scenes. They've made a film about modern culture's standardized stupidity. Whenever Maher responds with critical scrutiny, his subjects look at him like he's in dire need of help. It's why Religulous is more incisive for the interviewees' reactions to alien Maher than for anything he says to them. Religulous continues Michael Moore's defacement of the documentary format into a soapbox, but it stays afloat on its own anger.

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Vol 25, No 32
January 11, 2018

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