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HBO's Friends of God - TCA Report

by Kevin Kelly, posted Jan 12th 2007 9:57PM
Friends of God - HBO FilmsDocumentary filmmaker Alexandra Pelosi, who also directed the doc about the Presidential campaign of George W. Bush Journeys with George, tackles evangelicals in Friends of God, an original film for HBO. It's a startling look deep inside the conventions, beliefs, and personalities that make up this larger than you would think demographic in the United States, which contains an estimated 50 to 80 million Americans.

Some of the subjects in the film are some wrestlers who describe what they do as "Taking TV wrestling, cleanning it up, and putting Jesus in it," and a minister who brags about the amount of sex he has with his wife. He also dubiously claims that evangelicals have "The most satisfying sex lives out of any group." He also asks two of his constituents how often they have sex with their wives, and they both claim every day. Two times a day, sometimes ... and they climax every time. Wow. Not exactly what you'd expect to see in a documentary about evangelicals, and that's what makes this look appealing.

Alexandra views this film as "The blue states sending scouts into the red states to find out what they're all about," and she's gone a long way to continue her documentary filmmaking (she appears very little in this film) and stepping out from under the shadow of her mother, newly-elected Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. Friends of God premieres on HBO on January 25th.

Quote of the panel:

  • Dr. Larry Poland said that seeing certain evangelicals on-screen made him cringe a bit, because "Every congregation has their 'jerk factor.' The gays and lesbians have it, the Democarts have it, and we have it."

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Mr. Big John Stud,
Your comments are quite histerical. I like the way they try masqeraude as intelligence but in fact are truly ignorant. You have proven that you yourself do not have an adequate knowledge of the bible as well as of the U.S. Constitution. However, if you listen to the things that politicians (rhetoriticians) try to shove down your throat then you would be correct. The fact is, that "seperation of church and state" was NEVER in the constitution. It was in a letter from Jefferson written after the Constitution which I think does not carry a lot of weight. The point I am trying to make is that I wish everyone would actually read the bible for themselves but more importantly read it IN context. The OT is very much a part of the NT. Christianity is not about striving to be a "good" (shutter) person or going to church or even following in the footsteps of many American and just claiming to be a Christian. It is not what you say or do it is how you walk and who you have walking with you! Romans 6:23 NIV "For the wages of Sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."

January 29 2007 at 6:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Stephanie Sterrett

I watched the documentary last night and was disappointed. I thouroughly enjoyed Pelosi's film Journey's with George and hoped this film would be as good. However, she focuses on some positives things that evangelicals do but still managed to miss their hearts. For example there was nothing about American evangelical missionaries. It would have been nice if she included how many missionaries there are and how much they do in America and oversees to help the poor. Instead she made her focus on Haggard and Falwell. I wish she would have visited some midsize evangelical churches. She went to Lexington, Ky my hometown and visited a putt putt golf course but didn't visit any churches in the area. She could have visited a variety of Christian collges in Indiana like Taylor or Indiania Wesleyan but instead only limited herself to evangelicals in the south. Next time widen your search Pelosi. I think you really missed the true heart of evangelicals.

January 26 2007 at 1:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Bradley Christian

Yew cain't spel. I sume yur not smart in other wayz ethur.

January 26 2007 at 6:46 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Kim Lukianov

Big John Stud -- I love you!! You took the words right out of my mouth. Ms. Grabowski, I assume from your name that your ethnic background is Polish. I'm sure you have been offended by jokes that make fun of Polish people and their alleged stupidity. I would think that you would be a bit more sensitive. And Bradley, dear heart, if you are going to rip someone a new a**hole, please use the spellcheck and grammar check functions on your computer. What you and Ms. Grabowski fail to see is that you are nothing more than a source of amusement when you sputter forth with such incoherent crap.

January 25 2007 at 8:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gloria E

Hi John,
I am hoping that you know that there is not 'a christian god' and 'a jewish god' or any other name for God that you are trying to use to make your point. There is only ONE God and He does not change. Jesus, our Messiah, is a Jew. Also, Jesus did not persecute ANYONE. In fact, he spent his time with thieves, prostitutes and liars. He loved the sinner but hated the sin. He might have spent time with homosexuals as well but it does not mean that He condoned their actions any more than those of the others He spent his time with who were in sin.
He just loved them and died for them. All of us. The price to pay for sin is death and He paid the ultimate price for us all. We have only to believe and live as He would have us live. No individual rules depending on who you are. We have One God, One Word.

January 25 2007 at 6:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Big John Stud

Ms. Grabowski

When did legalized immigration become a sin in the eyes of God? As a matter of fact, legalized immigration is what made our country what it is. Unless your a native american, you're a descendant of an immigrant to this country, without legalized immigration you wouldn't be here. Is it wrong to deny someone in the present, that was given to your ancestors in the past?

Besides that, you pro-lifers have got to get the idea into your skull that pro-choice does not mean that a person is FOR abortion. It merely means that choice is left up to the person and is not already made for them by government. It does not mean that person goes out and signs people up for abortions because they want to see more abortions.

You have alot to learn about the history of this country. Abortion and homosexuality may be looked down upon in the Bible, but you must remember that in our constition there is a separation of church and state. Don't give me that crap about our country was founded by Christians and that's the way they intended it. If they had intended it, they would have written it into the constitution that way. The reason there is a separation of church and state is because up to that point in history, religion had skewered governments into persecuting other religions. That's why our forefathers came to this place in the first place. It was christian on christian persecution. Your abhorration of homosexuality is merely a belief held by you and other christian fanaticals that the Bible says it is wrong. The only part where homosexuals are even mentioned in the Bible is in the old testament, which is just that---the OLD testament. The christian god created a new testament which the coming of Jesus. Never once did jesus persecute homosexuals. By the way, the image of the Christian god in the bible changes over time. The christian god goes from a god of punishment and retribution in the old testament to a god of forgiveness in the new testament. The new testament is meant for christians, the old testament was meant for jews. The only reason the old testament is even attached to the christian bible is to recount the message of the socalled prophets to prove to future christians that jesus really was the christian messiah.

You pretend like you know the bible, but in reality, you only know what your church has forced down your throat. The same goes for your view of this country.

January 25 2007 at 3:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Connie Grabowski

Re; dave deane
Mr. Deane, Nanci Polosi is FOR Homosexuailty, Gay Marriage, Abortion, Legalizing Immigration....doesn't that go against God's Law? You make some good points as far as the state of our nation and the coming of "A New World Order". That is noted in Prophecy and so many are decieved and blinded by the Truth. What's most important is where YOUR heart and soul is. AND be ready to be persecuted, jailed, murdered, for your Faith in Jesus Christ. I am a Modern Day Martyr....(Martyr-someone who would die, rather than give up their Faith").

January 23 2007 at 6:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
joe magner

I find the reactions to things by the evangelical right christian amusing and tragic and threatening. X-Rev Ted said it - they have the best sex, and i bet drugs, and weak consciousess too.

i consider myself to be an atheist-for-jesus and read the bible to understand the message and life of someone else like MLK or Mandela or Rev Tutu. i lived in the bible belt for 13 plus years and can give testimony to the basic mechanism of transference of suppressed internal states on to the rest of the world, hence the X-Rev Ted projects his own need for homosexuality and drugs on to the rest of society. he fights his own demons by projection and then condemnation - doesn't that remind us of others like Bush? - get them bad guys that insurgency - while he is that which he condems..and creats that which he abhors......just like ted

im anxiously awaiting her film and if its as revieling as journies with george hope to learn more these jesus freaks

January 22 2007 at 7:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dave deane

miss pelosi, i am a "former" lifetime republican (christian conservative) who voted twice for bush; even had the "w" sticker on my car. however, with a great deal of questions over the cause of 9-11, his mismanagement of the iraqi war, his refusal to seal our borders and his apparent desire for illegal aliens in the u.s., and the iceing on the cake, THE NORTH AMERICAN UNION, whereby our borders will be erased, our sovereignty erased, our freedoms erased and constitution erased has caused me to reject bush and the republican party. i am now an independent. in my opinion, all christian conservatives were "had" by bush. he courted our votes by appealing to our conservative religious sentiments. he really took us for a ride. it took me almost three years to wake up to what the "neocons" were doing to our country. my biggest disappointment is the question i have of why would a christian conservative president join with fox of mexico and martin of canada, in two meetings in texas in march, 2005, to plan for the consolidation of mexico, canada and the u.s. into one nation?? the next big question is, why is the major media, except for lou dobbs of cnn, ignoring, for the most part, the biggest story of the 21st. century? i can't even get my old senator, kit bond and my new senator, claire mccaskill, to comment on the subject, even after many requests for a comment. we now realize that george bush is really aligned with our shadow government, the council on foreign relations whom are the instigators of the north american union/nafta super highway. my opinion is that bush, like daddy bush, is pushing for the formation of a new world order in which the u.s. will be part of a one world government. any christian conservative who can't see what's happening to their country either is misinformed or has their head in the sand. i am embarassed over what bush and the republicans have done to our country and i am hoping that a lady named mrs. pelosi will take heed and become involved in the study of the nau and take action against it. she will be receiving email from me soon. thanks, dave deane, st. louis.

January 22 2007 at 6:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gloria E

Dr. Poland, that you for reminding us that as humans, we all have that 'jerk factor'; it is called sin. Praise God that He sent His Son who was crucified and rose from the dead to pay for those sins. Like the evangelicals and those of us who believe, we are not in any way perfect but we are redeemed

January 22 2007 at 5:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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