My Scientology Movie - Louis Theroux documentary

Discussion in 'News and Current Events' started by CommunicatorIC, Feb 10, 2014.

  1. The Wrong Guy Member

    Video: Scientology - Louis Theroux talks about his first theatrical release | Belfast Telegraph

    Documentary maker Louis Theroux admits that he wanted to experience harassment from the Scientologists whilst filming his documentary about the religion, and suggests he would have been disappointed if he did not receive extra attention.

    My Scientology Movie is out now in cinemas across the UK.
  2. Incredulicide Member

    Video Waybacked
  3. The Wrong Guy Member

    My Scientology Movie review Ireland

    Fiona O'leary, October 9, 2016
  4. The Wrong Guy Member

    Louis Theroux: ‘I don’t want to just run up to Scientology and punch it on the nose’ | British Film Institute


    “If you went down there,” Theroux tells me, “and said ‘I’m curious about you’, they’d say ‘Come on in, we can really help you. Would you mind filling out this questionnaire? It could really help you in your life and when we look at the results we can recommend some courses.’

    “‘L. Ron Hubbard’s a brilliant, brilliant man’” – this is still the hypothetical Scientologist speaking, Theroux is at pains to clarify – “‘and based on his teachings we could structure a series of things for you that would amazingly improve your ability to communicate, make you have better relationships in your private life, do better at work and be happier and more successful.’

    “Now, if you went in there and said ‘I want to do a story on you’ – different reaction. I don’t know what would happen but I expect they’d say ‘Talk to our communications office’, and then it probably wouldn’t lead anywhere.”
  5. The Wrong Guy Member

    Piers Morgan challenges Church of Scientology after branding followers 'sinister little weirdos' live on TV

    The presenter has been trolled by followers and is convinced they want to 'shut down the truth'

    By Nicola Agius, Mirror Online


    Piers Morgan has challenged the Church of Scientology.

    The presenter, who claims he has been trolled by members of the 'religion', has asked followers to come on Good Morning Britain to defend their beliefs.

    He is convinced that they are hiding dark secrets and dislike journalists investigating the faith.

    Desperate to take them on in a live TV debate, he fumed: "Come on you gutless cowards. We think you're a bunch of sinister little weirdos!"

    Piers was discussing the subject in light of Louis Theroux's new documentary, My Scientology Movie.

    He was joined on the GMB sofa by Panorama journalist John Sweeney who also claims he was targeted by members of the church while conducting an investigation into the faith.

    Opening up about his experience with scientologists, the reporter said: "It's dark stuff. It's a space alien cult. Members like Tom Cruise will say it's a good religion but ex-members claim it's all about mind-control. They brainwash people. It really is bonkers."

    He continued: "I remember when we did our Panorama investigation, they came chasing after us! Why did they do that? Clearly because they have something to hide."

    Piers admitted he had also been on the receiving end of abuse after writing columns about Scientology.

    "I was bombarded by an army of people whose only job is to shut down the truth!" he said.

    More here, including video clips:
    • Like Like x 1
  6. The Wrong Guy Member

    • Like Like x 2
  7. Spangly Member

    I got the chance to see this yesterday in central London - it's damn good and I recommend getting to a legit screening if you can, or buying the DVD when it comes out. It deserves to be financially supported.

    Also I can't help but wonder if there were other anons or robustly anti-sci people in the same screening. A few specific laughs at details that only us lot would get. (Like Louis adopting the word "enturbulated" without having introduced it in the film)
    • Like Like x 5
  8. afternon Member

    I plan on seeing it this weekend- I expect it'll be a little bit lighter than "Going Clear" (which was thorough and hard hitting but had nothing new for us Anons to chew on). I love the trailer where Louis is so reasonable with the mono syllabic scilons sent to bullbait him they look nuts and reprehensible and he simply stands his ground with patience and humour.
  9. afternon Member

    Saw it last night- I wasn't expecting to see anything new but the whole way the film was constructed and how Louis interviewed people made it a unique approach, the guy who was cast to play David Miscavige did an incredible job- and the usual harassment that the cult use to dissuade journalists was handled really well by Louis- the insanity and inflexibility of the culties and their creepy behaviour was very evident.

    It's not deeply researched journalism like Going Clear but it does show an entertaining and revealing approach- Marty is not given an easy ride by Louis at all and there are tense moments as well as light hearted and funny ones.

    Fans of Louis who haven't had an interest in the scientology cult will be introduced to the subject and the vile psycho terrorism that the cult use.
    • Like Like x 4
  10. The Wrong Guy Member

  11. The Wrong Guy Member

    “Do I Look Brainwashed To You?” – Louis Theroux’s My Scientology Movie

    By Edward Dixon, VultureHound

    First paragraph:

    Of all of the Louis Theroux canon to date, my favourite of his contributions to journalism is his description of BBC reporter John Sweeney going “shouty-crackers” when continually hounded by Scientology members when filming a documentary about the church. You can imagine my excitement upon finding out Theroux was to take on the church in a documentary of his own.

    Last paragraph:

    One of Theroux’s greatest skills as a documentary maker is to present the blackly comic aspects of his subjects, to draw out the funny side, without making light of their essential moral and intellectual wrongness. Also, his commitment in attempting to portray his subjects as real people with good intentions, is never more apparent than it is in this film. Theroux is continuously thwarted by a high-ranking church member, Catherine Fraser, as he attempts to film outside one of the church’s buildings. Coincidentally, Fraser happens to be the ex-wife of Jefferson Hawkins, one of the contributors to this documentary and author of Counterfeit Dreams, a book about the church and his defection from it. Hawkins, when asked by Theroux, says his ex-wife is “trapped in a not-good system” but knows she is a “good person at heart.” And that’s probably the perception of Scientology most accurately conveyed in this film – well-intentioned people tricked into working for an organisation with a heart of darkness. As funny and ludicrous scientology may seem to us (and is), it has ruined the lives of real people trapped in its beliefs and there are some who may never get out.
  12. sceptical Member

    Watched it last night, I was a little bit disappointed with it to be honest. He didn't and was never going to be able to get a two sided view point on this documentary and it lacked any real purpose, so I don't think he achieved what he originally had set out to achieve. It was almost pointless which is a shame.
  13. What is certain is that Louis Theroux's documentaries will be difficult for some to get.

    When you are daily and continuously bombarded by a seemingly endless series of hotheads feverishly upping the ante in real or faux outrage at the topic of the day, it takes some kind of re-calibration of the emotions to appreciate the subtlety of Louis' approach.

    Louis embodies timeless values of reasonableness and fairness, with a certain understated firmness in the face of dogma and hate. I hope more people will learn to appreciate such thoughtfulness and care above the ranting that is standard fare in the media.
    • Like Like x 3
  14. CarterUSP Member

    Watched it, loved it. My review:
    As well as being fascinatingly entertaining I think it succeeded in doing what it set out to do which is to give a fair and humanising representation of its subjects. Theroux is well known for giving fringe groups and indviduals room to express themselves in their own words in their own way, giving the audience a greater empathy with even the most twisted and degraded ridges of society. For those of us well acquainted with the myriad range of critical scientology documentaries out there, there may not have been any new facts and information, but Theroux has given us a fresh and accessible look at the subject.
    Theroux tries to look positively where he can on those we would otherwise be quick to condemn; here the actual scientologists themselves do much greater damage to their own reputations than anything else in the documentary could have. Theroux is disarmingly unflappable in the face of scientologist attempts to intimidate and we get a sense of their frustration that their tech doesn't work on him (and fear that miscavige will punish them for failing to handle the situation).
    As a critic of scientology, one way I judge any documentary like this is to ask if this is all someone knew about scientology, how would it inform and protect them against being victims of the cult themselves. Theroux's documentary does this brilliantly, letting paranoid, oppressive, creepy cultists show how paranoid, oppressive and creepy their cult is by their own words and actions. Theroux even gives us the most candid view of someone like Rathbun, leaving us with a sliver of sympathy for the guy who is now reaping even a tiny bit of all of the damage he had sown in countless others for years.
    Theroux's popularity as a documentary maker means that many out there who wouldn't ever touch something like Going Clear will get to watch a film that shows the cult to be a nasty, insidious, dangerous organisation headed by a psychotic villain that they should stay far, far away from.
    • Like Like x 2
    • Like Like x 2
  15. sceptical Member

    Fair point, in reflection after it being a while since seeing it I do agree.
    • Like Like x 2
  16. The Wrong Guy Member

    Scientology Used Leah Remini to Recruit Me | Steven Mango

    Celebrities, such as Leah Remini, were used to recruit new actors like myself into the Scientology Celebrity Centre. Networking seminars, fancy galas, and a celebrity mentorship with Tom Cruise: Scientology promised everything imaginable to help launch my career. Little did I know, they were all empty promises used to get my credit card number and ultimate devotion to their organization.

    My Video “Inside The Scientology Celebrity Centre”:
    • Like Like x 1
    • Like Like x 3
  17. RightOn Member

    • Like Like x 1
  18. ravenanon Member

    Wonderful news! I would love to see Leah show up to the premier
    • Like Like x 1
  19. The Wrong Guy Member

  20. VIDEO: Filming My Scientology Movie with Louis Theroux, by Steven Mango.

    * * * * * BEGIN INTRODUCTION * * * * *

    Published on Jan 23, 2017

    I wanted to share my experience filming My Scientology Movie with Louis Theroux and BBC Films. I was very excited to have had the opportunity to share my story about Scientology. I wanted to take you guys back to 2014 and give you the scoop on what actually happened on set of the film all the way up to the premiere in NYC at the Tribeca Film Festival.

    My Scientology Movie will be in theaters in the USA on March 10. It will also be available On Demand and on Amazon Video!

    Have you seen the film? Please comment your thoughts below! Don’t forget: please subscribe to my channel!

    Blog Post (Check out my new blog!):

    My Second Channel (Please watch & subscribe!):

    Contact Information and Links:

    Press/Media Contact:

    * * * * * END INTRODUCTION * * * * *
  21. The Wrong Guy Member

    Louis Theroux’s ‘My Scientology Movie’ is named Best Film at the VO5 NME Awards 2017

    The documentary looks at the mysterious religion

    By Damian Jones, NME


    The VO5 NME Awards 2017 prize for Best Film has gone to Louis Theroux’s ‘My Scientology Movie’.

    In the film, the renowned documentary-maker explores the mysterious religion of Scientology. It beat Hollywood blockbusters Deadpool, Captain America: Civil War and Suicide Squad, the Richard Linklater-directed Everybody Wants Some!! And the Sam Neill-starring Hunt For The Wilderpeople.

    The award was presented to Theroux by Adam Buxton. Accepting the accolade, Theroux said: “Thank you, simmer down. A big, big thank to NME, to everyone who voted, a big thank you to my wife, who’s had a baby while I was making this film. He’s now two and a half years old.

    “But there’s one person out there that made this film possible and that is Tom Cruise. He wouldn’t be in the film but Tom if you’re out there please call my agent, let’s do an expose, I’ve already got already got a title – My Scientology Sequel.”

    Director John Dower added: “We had a lot of fun making this film, we thought the Church Of Scientology were out there, and then Donald Trump came along. Thanks to Louis, my producer, editor. Who needs BAFTA when you can win a fucking NME Award?”

    • Like Like x 3
  22. The Wrong Guy Member

    • Like Like x 1
  23. The Wrong Guy Member

    The Most Insane Revelations From My Scientology Movie | Esquire

    Louis Theroux's documentary asks new, tough questions about the church — and its critics.

    ‘My Scientology Movie’ Exclusive Clip: BBC’s Louis Theroux Explores the Controversial Church in New Documentary | Indiewire

    Watch our exclusive clip below, which shows an exchange between current Scientologist Catherine Fraser and Theroux outside of Gold Base, in Riverside County, California, which is believed to be a key headquarters for the Church of Scientology.
    • Like Like x 1
  24. Perplexing Marty is perplexing!
  25. The Wrong Guy Member

    • Like Like x 1
  26. The Wrong Guy Member

    Confessions of a Former Scientologist: David Miscavige and Donald Trump Are Eerily Similar

    Tom De Vocht served close to thirty years in Sea Org, the clergy of the Church of Scientology, before leaving the religion. He opens up about his traumatic experience.

    By Marlow Stern, The Daily Beast


    There is a scene in My Scientology Movie, a documentary hitting theaters this Friday by the British provocateur Louis Theroux, that will leave you rattled.

    Upon landing at Los Angeles International Airport en route to an interview with the filmmaker, former Scientology senior executive Marty Rathbun is ambushed by a trio of high-ranking Scientologists. Rathbun, once the second-highest ranking official in Scientology, has become a whistleblower since exiting the church in 2004 — famously claiming in the documentary Going Clear that he was tasked with facilitating Tom Cruise’s “breakup with Nicole Kidman” by church leader David Miscavige.

    With a camcorder trained on Rathbun, a woman gets in his face. She is incensed. She shouts, “Stop committing suppressive acts! Full-time suppressive acts! Just end it!” as her two male comrades look on, grinning impishly.

    For Tom De Vocht, a former high-ranking Scientologist, the sequence hit particularly close to home: The woman is none other than his ex-wife, Jennifer Linson.

    “That’s my ex,” mutters De Vocht. “I left Scientology and we were divorced within 24 hours. It’s a pretty gross scene, and was jarring for me, too. Although, having been in it, you can sort of see where they’re coming from—and not in an ‘I agree with you’ way, but ‘I feel sorry for you.’”

    He pauses. “They’re under extreme pressure by [David] Miscavige, and these are people that believe in their religion 100 percent. They believe that if they don’t do what they’re told and don’t do everything they can to protect their religion their eternity is screwed forever. They’re true believers. So from their perspective, it’s the right thing to do. I was there at one point, man.”

    Continued at
  27. The Wrong Guy Member

  28. The Wrong Guy Member

    Scientology deserves your compassion: An interview with filmmaker Louis Theroux | America Magazine

    "There’s tremendous self-sacrifice, there’s amazing levels of commitment, and many are earnest people, devout people, people who really wish to do good in the world. But they’ve been imprisoned, figuratively, in this way of thinking."

    My Scientology Movie: EW review | EW

    ...for its imagination and open-mindedness, My Scientology Movie is one of the best documentaries of the year.

    'My Scientology Movie' Review | Hollywood Reporter several scenes document "I'm filming you filming me" standoffs, silly is very much what you get when venturing into the world of Thetans and E-meters and L. Ron Hubbard.
  29. Incredulicide Member

    Ross and Carrie and Louis Theroux: My Scientology Movie

    Ross and Carrie speak with Louis Theroux, filmmaker and journalist extraordinaire, about his new film: "My Scientology Movie." Hear all about the Church's response, Louis' visit to the Los Feliz Mission, his complicated relationship with former high-ranking church official Marty Rathbun, and more in this exciting dialog between Louis and two of his biggest fans.

    Audio Waybacked
  30. The Wrong Guy Member

    When you make a movie about Scientology, Scientology comes to you: A walk with Louis Theroux through L. Ron's hood

    By Jen Yamato, Los Angeles Times


    According to Scientology spokesperson Karin Pouw, the church has not yet screened “My Scientology Movie.”

    “We did notice several reviews saying things like it was ‘far from his finest hour’ or ‘nothing more than a desperate bid to get in on the hype,’ and that Theroux was also ‘accused of deception’ by the individual he cast as the star of his film,” she wrote in an email, quoting two negative reviews of the film, which holds an 89% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and a Yahoo article referencing Rathbun’s blog post.


    “I feel no animosity towards Scientologists,” said Theroux, who is currently working on three documentaries about crime in America. “I do believe Scientology does real damage, in the way in which it separates families and uses psychological techniques to keep people in a system in which they are abused and exploited — they deny that, but that’s my take on it.”

    “[Theroux] has no knowledge qualifying him to make this opinion,” Scientology’s Pouw responded. “The church’s beliefs and practices very much include the building blocks of strong family ties.”

    More at
  31. The Wrong Guy Member

    Subject of Scientology film: Louis Theroux used 'morally bankrupt tactics' | The Guardian

    The film’s chief interviewee, Mark Rathbun, says the film-maker and his associates used ‘pranks’ and ‘drive-bys’ to provoke a reaction from the church

    By Rory Carroll


    While Louis Theroux filmed a documentary about Scientology, the movement struck back, dispatching members with cameras to confront Theroux, his crew and interviewees.

    He exposed the tactics in the BBC documentary, My Scientology Movie, which debuted to mostly positive reviews in the UK last year and in the US last month.

    “It’s hard to deny the edge-of-the-seat drama that the film-makers generate whenever they calmly push back against the cameramen and operatives who’ve been assigned by the church to follow them around Los Angeles and intimidate them,” said the Los Angeles Times review.

    There is, however, a different version of what allegedly happened on- and offscreen: that Theroux adopted his own questionable tactics when the Scientologists initially refused to respond.

    This accusation comes from the documentary’s chief interviewee – Mark Rathbun, also known as Marty, a former Scientology enforcer turned apostate who is at the heart of the film.

    He alleges that the BBC team made what he described as “extraordinary efforts” to provoke Scientologists with “pranks” and “drive-bys” outside the church’s headquarters in LA.

    He first made the claim in a blogpost last September and repeated it to the Guardian this week in a statement via email, accusing Theroux, the producer, Simon Chinn, and the director, John Dower, of “intellectually and morally bankrupt tactics”.

    Theroux rejected the accusation and said the film’s goal was to tell the truth.

    Rathbun, a hate figure for Scientologists who consider him a traitor, said he had cooperated with the documentary on the promise it would explore the movements’s origins and philosophy. Instead, over the course of nearly a hundred hours of filming in 2014, he claimed he found himself being used “as bait to incite the wrath” of the church.

    When the organisation initially failed to respond the documentary, makers resorted to “tabloid” tactics and “childish shenanigans”, he claimed. “I witnessed Theroux and Dower stalk and harass Scientologists repeatedly with no sign that the Scientologists were interested in the bait.”

    When, eventually, church members did respond by confronting Rathbun – a key sequence in the documentary – Theroux and Dower “reacted with a mix of relief and glee”, the former enforcer said. “Chinn even referred to the confrontations and their fallout as the saving grace of an otherwise potentially failed project.”

    In a statement, Theroux responded: “The aim of the film was to tell the truth about Scientology, not to provoke Scientologists. We certainly never stalked or harassed church members. I very much enjoyed working with Marty on the film. He seemed to like the finished product, until he decided he didn’t like it. I wish him all the best.”

    The film, Theroux’s first theatrically released feature, earned $2.2m at the box office and is now available as a video on demand. Chinn, the producer, has won awards for his previous documentaries Man on Wire and Searching for Sugar Man.

    The Church of Scientology declined to cooperate with or give access to Theroux, so the documentary focused on confrontations with Scientologists, interviews with former members and dramatisations and re-enactments of church practices. The church did not respond to a comment request for this article.

    Scientology, founded by the science fiction writer L Ron Hubbard in 1955, boasts Tom Cruise and other Hollywood adherents despite a reputation, long denied by the group, for manipulation and bullying. Rathbun rose up the ranks to become inspector general, a senior post, before breaking with the church in 2004 and becoming a leading opponent.

    In an article for the Guardian in 2015, Theroux said he sought to genuinely understand Scientology and to break the mould of documentaries which focused on its confrontational tactics.

    But he also acknowledged relief that the group struck back during filming: “I had begun worrying that the church might have given up counter-investigating. I’ve never been so relieved to have an unidentified pair of people show up and start filming me in a random creepy way from across the road. After studying the subject for years, watching countless YouTube videos of Scientology handlers filming critics and journalists, it felt amazing to be on the receiving end myself: I felt like I’d been blooded.”

    Rathbun’s blogpost, and comments to the Guardian, raise the question of whether Theroux and his team went too far in seeking drama.

    “The jiggery-pokery Theroux and Dower attempted in provoking Scientologists – and were called out for in real time as I witnessed it – was legion.”

    He alleged the film-makers told Scientology lawyers about his collaboration in the hope of blowback and hosted him in a motel just a block from the home and office of the church leader, David Miscagive. He accused them of “loudly cavorting” with anti-Scientologists outside the movement’s headquarters and making a false, lurid dramatisation of Miscagive. He also denied having initially endorsed the film.

    Tony Ortega, a journalist and author who has tracked Scientology for 20 years and who knows both Rathbun and Theroux, defended the British film-maker.

    Theroux, Ortega said, used legitimate documentary methods to draw out an elusive, uncooperative subject. “Were they hoping Scientologists would react and follow them? Well, look, they were making a movie. What good would it be if no one did anything?” The confrontations were real, he said. “That is how Scientology reacts. If you show up with a camera, that is how they’ll react.”

    Rathbun’s denunciation of the film, Ortega said, reflected an apparent softening of his hostility towards the church. The apostate’s blogposts used to excoriate Miscagive but now they assail the church’s foes. “The real story is not so much Louis and his techniques but what the heck happened to Marty Rathbun.”

    • Like Like x 1
  32. mojo Member

    exactly - can anyone shed any light?
  33. The Wrong Guy Member

    ‘My Scientology Movie’ Is Now On Netflix, And Thank Xenu For That

    By Jade Budowski, Decider


    In 2014, Louis Theroux, an English documentary filmmaker and broadcaster, sent out a simple, inquiring tweet. “Open call to any #Scientologists out there,” he wrote. “I would love to speak to you for a documentary I am working on. About Scientology.” Within minutes, he was bombarded with a slew of messages warning him against making a film about the Church, as he may put himself in danger in the process. Because the Church of Scientology has long held a reputation for threatening anyone who gets too close, many filmmakers shy away from the subject. Theroux, however, did not, and because of his relentless insistence to make his film, we have My Scientology Movie – and it’s now streaming on Netflix.

    If you’re anticipating something in the same family as Going Clear, you should adjust your expectations now. Theroux’s film is not nearly as dramatic. My Scientology Movie begins in a similar, basic documentary structure – with clips of the eerily enthusiastic David Miscavige giving speeches at Scientology galas and such – but when Theroux realizes gaining access to inside the Church is going to be harder than he thought, he takes matters into his own hands. With the help of faces that may be familiar to you if you’ve consumed any of the other Scientology flicks or books out there, Theroux casts actors to perform reenactments of the most horrifying stories that have come out of the Church.

    Ex-members like Marty Rathbun, Tom DeVocht, and Jeff Hawkins all recall the most terrible happenings that they witnessed (or took part in) while involved in the Church, and at times, it’s harrowing. Rathbun is clearly plagued with remorse about what he’s done, and his testimony aids heavily in the scenes played out by the actors cast as Scientology higher-ups.

    While the premise may sound a little goofy, the employment of actors to play these people – particularly the young man who takes on the crazy-eyed David Miscavige – is totally effective and uniquely terrifying. Theroux boasts a unique charisma and deadpan delivery that makes even the most scary situations more cringingly uncomfortable than anything – he doesn’t seem to have any fear when he stands up to Church members attempting to intimidate him.

    There’s nothing entirely revolutionary about My Scientology Movie, but if you have even a slight interest in immersing yourself in the consistently controversial Church and the scandals that plague it, you will most certainly enjoy yourself.

  34. July 2017

    My Scientology Movie is trending on Netflix.

    Netflix has almost 100 million subscribers, and each subscriber can have up to 6 user accounts.

    So a very rough guess is that the movie is being seen by tens of millions of people around the world.
    • Like Like x 3
  35. The Wrong Guy Member

    It’s, unsurprisingly, really difficult to make a documentary on Scientology

    By Thomas Chiles, University Press


    As I sat down to watch the 2015 “My Scientology Movie” on Netflix, I realized how little I knew about the religion.

    Besides that it was founded by sci-fi author L. Ron Hubbard, all I knew was that famous actors like Tom Cruise and John Travolta are part of the church.

    Documentary filmmaker Louis Theroux has been determined to make a film about Scientology since 2011. But not a single member of the church would cooperate.


    Although new groundbreaking information about Scientology wasn’t revealed, the unique documentary style alone is enough to give this Netflix film a watch.

    Full article, with open comments:

Share This Page

Customize Theme Colors


Choose a color via Color picker or click the predefined style names!

Primary Color :

Secondary Color :
Predefined Skins