I just finished watching the movie. It begins alright, but unfortunately goes on to link "darwinism" to Hitler's holocaust, and as the catalyst for euthanasia and abortion, which go along with, in the movie's opinion, "devaluing of human life" and "deprivileging of humans".
This movie likens the refusal of academia to debate and entertain the idea of intelligent design to the Berlin wall. Yes, the Berlin Wall! It's a recurring theme, and finishes with Regan telling Gorvechev to "tear down this wall" and urging others to get involved to tear down the wall of academic resistance to freedom!
Yes, folks, it's about the freedom of people to use religious ideas in the scientific realm.
Ben Stein interviews several academic/scientific professors and scholars who have lost their jobs in their view due to their mention of ID in papers they have written.
He takes these cases and runs with them.
Where does Stein end up?
Nazi Germany in the extermination institutions, Hitler and the Nazis, Arlington Cemetery
and yes, the Berlin Wall.
He says, and I quote, "I know Darwinism does not automatically equate to Nazism, but if Darwinism inspired and justified such horrific events in the past, could it be used to rationalize similar initiatives today?"
Then he goes on to interview guests who decry euthanasia and abortion as the devaluing and deprivileging of human life.
He tells of men and women who have died to keep the freedoms our country enjoys, that it was founded on such freedoms, (makes a to do about Jefferson's penning these rights endowed by our "creator") and we must fight for academic freedom. He definitely continues to equate the scientific establishment as East Berlin and the wall, in as much as the Scientific Elite refuse to let anything in that would be what they consider distasteful and subversive.
The conclusion of correlation between Nazism and Darwinism (there isn't any) really struck a chord with me, and I'm convinced that this film is misinforming propaganda. Needless to say, I'm really disturbed about it. Those of us who will watch the film and then try to supplement the information or dispel it on our own are not the majority. I noticed that there wasn't a single segment shedding light on the "evidence" that lead to the suggestion of intelligent design. It's because it isn't convincing evidence, and the film exploits the ignorance of the lay public by not including it. Expelled is a hoax-motivated piece of political propaganda masquerading as an objective documentary.
What did you think about the interview(s) with Richard Dawkins?
Agreed! It started off showing Dawkins having make-up applied, when you know that many of the other interviewees (and probably Stein himself) HAD to have been buffed up off camera. The lighting and music was obviously intended to set the scene as confrontational rather than inquiring.
Richard has his low points as well, but none as low as the methods in this film.
Not only was Ben Stein spinning a straw-man argument, but the assertions made in the movie are dubious at best and, at least, some of the interviews were obtained fraudulently by misrepresenting the nature of the film being prepared to the interviewees. In fact, Richard Dawkins was one of those.
Expelled Exposed is an excellent website. I'm almost hoping that there will be a movie made, but just Expelled attracted a mostly sycophantic, religious-right audience, a movie exposing the fallacious claims made in Expelled will almost certainly repel them. Isn't culture war tedious?