Ben Stein’s Expelled: The ‘Experts’ Weigh In

Many comical things have been written about actor Ben Stein’s soon-to-be-released anti-evolution, pro-creation movie, Expelled. But the most (unintentionally) amusing appraisal comes from “reviewer” Chuck Colson, who brags, “I love Ben Stein. We worked together in politics many years ago.”In his previous life, of course, Colson was President Richard Nixon’s chief counsel and hatchet man. He was disbarred and sent to prison for obstruction of justice in the Watergate era. About the same time he went to the Big House, Colson became Born Again and went on to found Prison Fellowship, a successful ministry.

Stein, meanwhile, was a Nixon speech writer and lawyer, and went on to become a movie actor, appearing in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off – and his new big project, the aforementioned anti-Darwin “expose,” Expelled, which is set to hit theaters on April 18.

As Colorado Confidential’s Dan Whipple and Wendy Norris have noted, the movie’s makers have been, uh, pointedly ungenerous about sharing their art with reviewers – at least the secular bunch.

(As the Orlando Sentinel‘s Roger Moore has noted, “keeping your movie from the public because you’re afraid of ridicule is just gutless.”)

Moore was invited, then uninvited, then somehow made it in anyway to a screening of the film at a Florida mega-church. He describes it this way:

“It’s a rabble-rouser of a doc that uses all manner of loaded images, loaded rhetoric, few if any facts and mockery of hand-picked “weirdo” scientists to attack those who, Stein claims, are stifling the Religious Right’s efforts to inject intelligent design into science courses, science curricula and the national debate…”

“…It just isn’t particularly funny. Or the least bit convincing.”

Colorado Confidential’s Whipple was also inadvertently invited to screen the flick, and subsequently wrote about the creators’ efforts to have him and other reviewers sign nondisclosure agreements and how they have staged “press conferences.”

But fear not! The movie’s makers themselves have released their own line-up of special guest movie reviewers, including such noted “experts” as Colson, James Dobson of Focus on the Family, the president of California Baptist University and the director for cultural issues at Phyllis Schlafly’s group, Concerned Women for America.

Here’s a sample of what they’re saying:

“I love Ben Stein. We worked together in politics many years ago. He’s a charming, engaging, and very bright guy. He’s on the right track here.”