Fourteen minutes into the new film Collision, my fingers started to itch for the fast-forward button. I desperately scanned the movie’s press materials: “How long can this go on?” I wondered. (Answer: 90 minutes.) The documentary, which opens this week, shows the public intellectual Christopher Hitchens and an Idaho pastor named Douglas Wilson arguing in one drab venue after another over whether Christianity is “good for the world.” So uncinematic is this picture—two middle-aged white men talking—that my attention insistently wandered toward anything humanizing and finally dwelled, for too long perhaps, on a fleck of something on Hitchens’s eyelash. All the while Hitchens and Wilson went on and on and on and on, always well mannered, never conceding a thing.
About The Author
Lisa Miller is a contributing editor at New York magazine. She is the former religion columnist for the Washington Post, former senior editor of Newsweek magazine, and author of “Heaven: Our Enduring Fascination with the Afterlife.” She is a multi-year winner of the New York Newswomen’s Club prize for feature writing and has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award.