documentary DVD and movie reviews and previews from - curled up with a good dvd
documentary DVD reviews and previews from - curled up with a good dvd
DVD reviews, previews and info - documentary
  action movies on DVD
  animation on DVD
  art house and international / foreign language films on DVD
  comedies on DVD
  documentaries on DVD
  dramas on DVD
  children's and family DVDs
  horror and sci-fi on DVD
  suspense on DVD
  television series on DVD
  Blu-ray DVD reviews


The Atheism Tapes - documentary DVD review
THE ATHEISM TAPES Not rated by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) rating: 5 stars
Featuring: Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Colin McGinn, Arthur Miller, Denys Turner, Steven Weinberg
Director: Jonathan Miller   Distributor: Alive Mind
DVD release: 08 July 2008   Runtime: 180 min. (2 discs)
Format: Color, DVD-Video, Widescreen, NTSC
DVD Features: Audio tracks (Dolby Digital - English)

The Atheism Tapes is a collection of Jonathan Miller's interviews with noteworthy educated people about atheism that came about after Miller's BBC4 series Atheism: a Brief History of Disbelief left too much interesting material on the cutting-room floor. The Atheism Tapes consists of six roughly 30-minute interviews with British philosopher Colin McGinn, American physicist Steven Weinberg, American philosopher Daniel Dennett, American playwright Arthur Miller, English biologist Richard Dawkins, and British theologian Denys Turner.

Each conversation enthralls and entertains in its own way, each interviewee offering their own experiences on the subject of atheism, agnosticism, and belief. All are non-believers save one. Cambridge theologian Denys Turner and Miller discuss God in maddening circles, Turner claiming that card-carrying atheists have a habit of avoiding any questions that they don't have the tools to answer, Miller claiming that the question hadn't occurred to him. The big question for Turner is, why is there anything at all rather than nothing? Miller goes round after round with Turner - a good discussion, though it's difficult afterward to recall what exactly was discussed.

The interview with Richard Dawkins (atheism's poster child these days) focuses on the underpinnings of the war in Iraq, which was just winding into full swing as the interview was taped. Bush and Blair seemed to be working from the position that there is evil in the world and that it is personified in people like Hussein and bin Laden. Also talked about is Dawkins' childhood and his coming into disbelief. I would have enjoyed more about his 'coming out,' as it were, as I am still a mostly closeted atheist.

America and its somewhat puritanical attitudes toward religion come up repeatedly throughout. Americans tend to automatically avoid theological discussions, whereas Europeans do not consider it off the table. It's interesting to hear what is being said about the U.S. in other countries (relax; I think they find us adorable in most ways).

This collection of interviews is an excellent source for discussion of matters of belief. For atheists, it may well bolster their position; for theists, it may give them a better understanding of their faith-free friends, though the God crowd will not likely watch this, I fear, at least not in America.
  buy this DVD now or browse millions of other great products at
reviewed by A. Theist
    action | animation | art house/international | comedy | documentary | drama | family | horror/sci-fi | suspense | television    
    browse DVDs alphabetical by title    
    contact | home