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CATHOLIC BISHOPS HIT NEW JAMES BOND MOVIE FOR SEX, VIOLENCE

MALACANANG, December 2, 2002 (STAR) Influential Roman Catholic bishops in the country warned the public yesterday against the latest James Bond movie for its casual sex and large-scale violence.

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) said there was nothing new to appreciate in the plot of "Die Another Day," noting that British agent "007" has not mended his womanizing ways since the first Bond movie "Dr. No" in 1962.

"He is still into casual sex/promiscuity with willing partners — Miranda Frost (Rosamund Pike) and co-agent from another agency Jinx (Halle Berry)," the CBCP film review body Catholic Initiative for Enlightened Movie Appreciation (Cinema) said.

"While some viewers are entertained by what they take as the pleasing spectacle of action and sound in the conflict of good versus bad, others see this as a spectacle of violence and acts of terrorism that disturb," Cinema said.

It said the movie was a "fantastic tale with destruction of such magnitude" that people should hope would not happen in reality.

The ingredients that have made the Bond movies a hit have remained the same — fast story sequences, sexy and daring women, gadgets and machines, and the attractive and ruthless Bond, the CBCP said.

Cinema, however, said the movie was not totally morally unacceptable, giving it a plus for portraying women as equal to men.

"It is a plus for women’s causes that Jinx is Bond’s co-equal as an agent, and as good as he is in action, if not better," Cinema said.

It also praised Berry as "remarkable as an action star" and Bond star Pierce Brosnan as his usual dapper "but improved, though a little tired, self."

The CBCP holds considerable influence and have in the past partly caused the banning of critically acclaimed movies such as "The Piano" and "Schindler’s List."

Early this month, the CBCP warned parents against dark and violent scenes in the "Harry Potter movie Chamber of Secrets," but the move did not stop children from flocking to the cinemas. — AFP, Sandy Araneta


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