- National Post: “The Hollywood Holy Grail”
The basis for the film is “research” done by amateur treasure hunter “Ben Hammott”—actually a pseudonym formed by rearranging the letters in “the tombman”—who claims to have discovered the body of Mary Magdalene. Some conspiracy theorists have argued that Jesus survived the crucifixion, then moved to southern France with His wife, Mary Magdalene. Thankfully, the National Post takes a close look at what amounts to a near-hoax that even Da Vinci Code believers scoff at.
“Ben Hammott” . . . claims to have discovered the body of Mary Magdalene.
Hammott, who will not reveal his true identity, alleges that he discovered the “apparent tomb of a Knight Templar” in a hole in a rural cave in southern France. Excited, he fetched a Hollywood director who then “lowered a pole into the tomb with ‘some sticky stuff on the end’” and removed the shroud from the body.
The director and treasure hunter also used the pole to retrieve hair from the corpse’s head. The hair was then sent off for DNA analysis at Canada’s Lakeland University. The result of the testing was less than blockbuster-worthy, however: even the corpse’s gender could not be ascertained. However, the individual was “traced to a genetic grouping that originated in the northern Middle East and spread into Europe.”
So let’s hear the two views on the film. First, Bloodline producer Rene Barnett claims the research and discoveries the film presents “clearly call into question the historical Jesus and the story that we've been taught all these 2,000 years.” Barnett also believes the tomb may be that of Mary Magdalene, despite the lack of DNA evidence to even show the body was a woman’s.
But Andrew Gough—who, as a contributor to The Dan Brown Companion and the operator of a web forum on “esoteric mysteries,” is no stranger to conspiracies—has a different view. “I think almost all the pillars in the film are fraudulent,” Gough claims, adding, “I may have been born at night, but it wasn't last night, you know? [Hammott] has no credentials.” Furthermore, Gough reports knowing Hammott personally. “The story [of discovering the tomb] is different every time [Hammott] tells it,” he adds.
At this point, it may sound as though Bloodline isn’t even worth commenting on (or is even a complete hoax, which is entirely possible). Sadly, though, the film has already received press from the mainstream media in the U.S. (such as excerpts shown on ABC’s program Good Morning America), and we have no doubt many will see the film without bothering to research the integrity of its conclusions. Do your part to stay informed!
(Visit the Internet Movie Database to watch the Bloodline trailer.)
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