'Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief': Sundance Review - 2015-01-25

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F117.png 'Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief': Sundance Review January 25, 2015, Leslie Felperin, Hollywood Reporter

Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, director Alex Gibney's documentary about the famously litigious, allegedly religious organization, arrived in Sundance trailing high expectations, wild speculation and a massive amount of anticipation. There were rumors on the streets of Park City that the screening on Sunday, Jan. 25, might be the only time it would ever be shown, that (per executive producer Sheila Nevins) over 160 lawyers examined the film and that there might be protests from angry members of the church. There were even whispers of damning new material about famous followers Tom Cruise and John Travolta.

Read more Sundance: Scientology Film Subjects Called "Brave," Get Standing Ovation

As it happened, the event went off with no protests — except from peeved festivalgoers who failed to find a seat at the packed screening — and there was little in the way of revelations that couldn't be found already in Lawrence Wright's 2013 book of (almost) the same name, upon which the film is based. Indeed, there were subjects covered extensively in Wright's book that the film eschewed completely, such as the mystery surrounding the whereabouts of Scientology head David Miscavige's wife, Michele Miscavige. But none of that detracts from the fact that this impeccably assembled and argued film represents a brave, timely intervention into debates around the organization that have been simmering for some time.

{{cite news | author = Leslie Felperin | title = 'Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief': Sundance Review | url = http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/review/going-clear-scientology-prison-belief-767023 | work = Hollywood Reporter | date = January 25, 2015 | accessdate = January 14, 2017 }}