Dogma (1999)

Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Linda Fiorentino, Bud Cort
An abortion clinic worker with a special heritage is called upon to save the existence of humanity from being negated by two renegade angels trying to exploit a loophole and re-enter Heaven.
Provocative and audacious, Dogma is an uneven but thoughtful religious satire that's both respectful and irreverent.
  • Lions Gate Company:
  • R Rated:
  • IMDB link IMDB:
  • 12 Nov 1999 Released:
  • 02 May 2000 DVD Release:
  • N/A Box office:

Trailer:

Smart, Funny, Intriguing........10/10

I have always loved Kevin Smith's style of directing and this film has re-affirmed my belief that he is one of the top directors in the film industry at the moment. Dogma's topic was a very sensitive one and could have been misused but Kevin Smith has dealt with the subject perfectly. Anyone who has critisized Dogma for being offensive has really not understood the film. Dogma is full of excellent moments, not least Alanis Morissette who I thought was fabulous in her small but important role as 'God'. All the performances were excellent and the actors complimented each other superbly. Overall this film has a mixture of everything and its underlying message is one which should reach everyone.
A Religious Comedy10/10

I am a huge Kevin Smith fan and after seeing this film I can say that it was everything I hoped it would be, and a little bit more. It's extremely well written and directed. The film has the same great comedy we're used to from Kevin Smith, but he shows that he has another dimension that I don't think many people thought was there.

Jay and Silent Bob have their biggest role so far. Jay has some of his laugh out loud funniest one liners yet. But what really makes this a great film is that it is genuinely thought provoking.

There are religious people out there who will criticize this film as being anti religion, anti Catholicism, when it is anything but (well, a little anti Cathlic maybe). The central theme to the film is that there is a God, but not the God that most people know (or think they know) or believe in. The characters in the film are trying to get the message across that people have changed the original God, man has made God into the image they want him/her to be, made their own religious rules, rules that God never intended. From a strictly biblical standpoint, Smith is right on, which is not something that can be said about many films dealing with religion. And isn't that the entire point to Christianity, that it's based on the bible.
simply fabulous--kevin smith rocks!9/10

While both funny and frightening, this film is more than just a comedy with gratuitous violence and (bad)-language. It's a theological reflection...and a call to the Church to focus on things that matter (like living life to the fullest, helping those in need, honoring and respecting all, expecting respect in return) rather than those that don't (like...well, dogma [doctrines/church laws] or any belief that causes us to "draw a line in the sand," condemning to hell or perdition any who disagree with us). As I watched it (the first and all subsequent times), I felt sure that the movie was written by someone who really loves his church -- but is smart and aware enough to recognize its shortcomings, its blindspots, even its failures and hypocrisies. Rather than simply leaving or ignoring or dismissing it, Smith chooses to enter into dialogue with it, using the potent medium of film to do so. One can only hope that the church--not just Roman Catholic but all branches of it-- takes him up on his call to conversation.


Not to be missed in the film, on a lighter note, are the introductory disclaimer and the "Thank Yous" at the end. Smith thanks Elaine Pagels, for God's sake -- who knew anyone in Hollywood read contemporary, feminist theology? What a welcome revelation....
Chesterton lives!9/10

Another vote from a cradle Catholic who was not remotely offended by this movie. Not that some of the negatives mentioned by other posters here aren't true -- yes, a lot of the humor is gross, yes, the F-word is overused, yes, its criticism of organized religion is less stinging that you'd expect (though that in itself is a slightly foolish expectation, given that the writer/director is himself an active member of an organized religion). And yes, if you're not Catholic, much of the movie is a little foggy, under-explained, and not very engaging. That last one I definitely agree with; I seriously doubt whether I'd recommend the film to a non-Catholic at all.

But, oh, God, I LOVED it, serious flaws and all! It's a huge chaotic mess with about sixty different trains of thought and philosophy, from the ecstatic to the scatological, slugging it out for dominance, and in its very sloppiness there's a sense of anarchic, exultant wonder I've never seen in a movie before. The only two things like it that I can think of are Thornton Wilder's play "Skin of Our Teeth" and G.K. Chesterton's amazing joyous fever dream of a novel "The Man Who Was Thursday", both of which are works by people who may or may not have faith but who definitely have a good idea. Or several dozen of them, and who just run with them wherever they go. These works are big chaotic messes, but in that way they are mirrors of Creation, the mother of all big chaotic messes. In all these works, just as in the real world, love and joy and beauty and filth and cruelty and despair are constantly tumbling over and bleeding into each other; the one universal rule is that everything is absurd, that the human race is the most absurd thing of all, and that this absurdity can be the catalyst to either suffocating grief or a kind of hilarious wonder.

If you go into "Dogma" expecting a trim and tidy theological comedy of manners, you'll be sorely disappointed. If you're looking for something with the same filthy gorgeous lunacy of existence itself, this is it.
I laughed till I cried (really)10/10
I always thought the phrase, "I laughed until I cried," was just an oxymoron. Until it happened to me. I watched Dogma: the funniest movie I have ever seen. The movie seemed designed specifically for my warped sense of humor. It was an incredible mesh of the high-brow and the low-brow.

It had one character who was extremely foul-mouthed, and kept making up hilarious obscene phrases. It also had a lot of perceptive, biting (and very funny) theological and social commentary.

For me, it was sort of like being tickled hard in the ribs for about an hour. When I reached the breath-taking climax of the film, the resolution was such a shock and was so unexpectedly emotional and I was so sore from all the laughing, I actually burst into tears. Now, dammit I am a grown man. I never do that. Not even for anything real, much less a movie. But it happened.