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The Unbelievers (2013)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 13 December 2013 (USA)
Renowned scientists Richard Dawkins and Lawrence Krauss cross the globe as they speak publicly about the importance of science and reason in the modern world.

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Storyline

'The Unbelievers' follows renowned scientists Richard Dawkins and Lawrence Krauss across the globe as they speak publicly about the importance of science and reason in the modern world - encouraging others to cast off antiquated religious and politically motivated approaches toward important current issues - making the world a better place for all. The film includes interviews with celebrities who support the work of these remarkable scientists. Written by Anonymous

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What are you willing to believe?

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Documentary

Certificate:

Not Rated
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13 December 2013 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The world premiere for The Unbelievers was on April 29, 2013 at Hot Docs Film Festival in Toronto, Ontario, and all four screenings of the film were sold out. See more »

Quotes

Ricky Gervais: You know early Christians were called atheists by the Romans because they didn't believe in all the gods. I mean that's what atheism is really, it's the belief in one less god than you.
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Soundtracks

Find The River
Written by Bill Berry (as Berry), Peter Buck (as Buck), Mike Mills (as Mills), and Michael Stipe (as Stipe)
Performed by R.E.M.
Published by Warner-Tamberlane Publishing Corp.
Night Garden Music.
By Arrangement with Warner Music Group Film and TV licensing
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User Reviews

 
For the pursuit of reason
30 April 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Like the previous reviewer, I was lucky enough to be one of the 3000 in attendance for the test-screening of this movie on March 29th. I could have rushed to write a review, but thought that giving myself awhile to digest it all and really think on it would be the best thing.

I left the screening with a buzz, almost a high, and perhaps it was partially due to being in a room with so many like-minded individuals. Upon waking the next morning, that buzz had subsided a bit, and was replaced by questions. GOOD questions. I wanted to know more, to research, to research, to learn and understand and seek out new things.

This film touches on so many subjects - from getting something from nothing, to evolution and our inability to comprehend long time, to arguments for reason in a world with very little of it, to the importance of making decisions based on reality, to the dangers of religion in society, to snippets of historical science trivia – that it would be literally impossible to fully explain any one of those issues without turning the movie in to a 24-hour-long miniseries. Maybe that was the point. Spark the interest, pique the curiosity, and let the viewer take it from there. The snippets of celebrity interviews were just enough to season the movie and give some different angles without taking away from the focus on the film, and as always, Ricky Gervais didn't fail to disappoint.

The directors described this movie as a rock-and-roll-tour-film about scientists. While that definitely came across, especially through the beautiful shots of packed audiences in several different locations and multiple countries, what I got more out of this movie was the human aspect of these two men. Anyone in this community knows the names of Professors Dawkins and Krauss. We've all got our favorite quotes, our favorite arguments, our favorite books (and passages therein), but we know them only in that regard. What I think we fail to understand much of the time is that these two are people (and hard-working people, at that!). They travel and sight-see and take pictures and eat ice cream and work on their laptops and get tired. They really are human, and it seems they really are friends, and I feel like I'm more familiar with them now than I ever could have been reading all of their books or watching all of their lectures. While I won't claim to feel like I was on the road with them, the beautifully captured scenes of auditoriums, backstage areas, crowds, cityscapes, and close-ups of various objects of interest, makes me feel much more connected and like a part of these two lives.

One thing worth mentioning is that this film treads somewhat lightly. It's not as in-your-face as I would have expected, and looking back, I think that's probably for the best, and was more than likely a choice made by the directors, as (if I heard correctly) they had some 250 hours of footage to sift through. Knowing RD, LK, and their cohorts, it definitely could have turned into something brash and abrasive that would immediately turn off any even slightly believing or sensitive viewers. As it stands, it's really more of a conversation starter, and with all of the topics I mentioned above, can start the conversation about any number of subjects, depending on the viewer and their interests.

And lest I forget, this movie is FUNNY! To anyone in fear that a 90-minute documentary about an evolutionary biologist and theoretical physicist may be drab, I assure you that couldn't be further from the case. There were several parts of the movie I couldn't hear because there was so much laughter in the auditorium.

That leads me to my one major complaint: the sound quality. While I understand that with a documentary, you're simply there on the scene and can only get the sound that was originally produced, there were many times that voices were muffled, lines were indiscernible, or that the music was simply too much for the dialogue. As the previous reviewer stated, this was a test screening only and much may change before the first official release. If the sound quality is the only thing that changes, I think this will be a near-perfect film and one that I would be proud to recommend to friends of all faiths, beliefs, and convictions.


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