Voila! Finally, the Man Who Sued God
script is here for all you quotes spouting fans of the movie starring Billy Connolly and
Judy Davis. This script is a transcript that was painstakingly
transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of Man Who Sued God. I know, I know, I still need to get the cast names in there and I'll be eternally
tweaking it, so if you have any corrections, feel free to
drop me a line. You won't
hurt my feelings. Honest.
In the latest weather news...
a severe storm warning
has been issued for the Eastern coast.
The weather bureau has also warned of high
winds and flash flooding in low lying areas.
Farmers are advised
that a sheet weather alert is coming.
What's wrong with you, Arthur?
Surely you're not scared of a wee bit sheet weather.
I know, that's where I'm going.
Here we go.
We're nearly there, Arthur.
Something tells me that this isn't
a very good day for fishing, Arthur.
That's instinct, old son.
- This is a day for spaghetti and wine.
- Hi Dad!
And bones, of course.
- Why, it's princess Ornatharicus.
- Why, it's Captain Ahab.
- How many did you catch?
- Millions. The hold's busting with...
I have a lobster for your mum. Hold that,
look after Arthur. I won't be long.
- Don't worry about it.
- Not a second.
We're having chops.
I hate lobster.
Tell your mum to put the kettle on.
Come on, Arthur.
Stupid dog, come on.
Dad, come back!
- Let's have a look. That will have to come off.
- God, what were you doing?
- I was getting a bloody lobster for you.
Forceps, pliers, bone nibblers.
- What the hell are bone nibblers?
- You're a very lucky man.
Yes, it's been a brilliant day.
Why don't you have a look at the prostate?
- I thought the lightning had got you.
- Too fast for lightning, me.
This could hurt a bit.
Not going out today, mate?
Jesus, that's a real thigh-slapper.
- You need anything else?
- No, I'm fine.
Things always go wrong for Dad.
- I feel sorry for him.
- Do you?
He's got no boat, no house, no you.
They say people make their own luck.
Why would anybody make luck that bad?
The wind must have come howling up here, right
underneath this one and buggered the whole issue.
- Place insured?
- You insured?
- Of course.
The old place stood up very well, though.
I was gonna rent one of your caravans
until I get my new boat.
Take a pick.
I don't want to crowd you and Jules,
- me being the ex and everything.
- You won't.
Does Jules know you guaranteed my loan?
You sure you're insured?
Have you looked at your policy?
It's in the boat.
- The premium's up-to-date. I checked.
- So did we.
- It's comprehensive insurance.
- Lightning, you said?
- What do you mean, 'Act of God'?
- Classic 'Act of God'.
My boat was where the lightning struck
because I put it there.
It was an accident, for fuck's sake.
It's in your policy.
Yes, look. Comprehensive.
Bastards. Pains in the arse. Parasites.
You can disappear up your own...
David Myers, please.
What's this crap about 'Act of God'?
Is that what they've got you on?
An 'Act of God' is force majeure.
It's a load of bollocks.
It's a legal fiction, that's what it is.
That's true, but it's a legitimate legal
fiction for things that aren't predictable.
Why would I need insurance
if life was predictable?
Tell me that.
I'm going down there.
- Going down here?
Call them, write them a letter, threaten and
abuse them if it makes you feel any better.
You're a lawyer.
Remember their contracts are bullet proof.
That's very good.
Catch you later.
See you later.
What a guy.
- What's the problem
- No problem.
Don't tell me, they're not gonna pay?
- Of course. Can I borrow the car?
- Thanks very much.
- Why not?
Has it occurred to you that
maybe this is a wake-up call?
A grow-up call?
I don't know. I suppose it could be something
of that nature. What do you reckon, Arthur?
Stop talking to the bloody dog!
- Did you think you were going to die?
- For a second I thought I was dead.
Do you think you're ever going
to finish this house, Dad? Really?
But it's you I thought about,
standing there on the jetty.
Do you know what I though?
I thought you saved me
What do you make of that?
You've never forgiven me, have you,
for giving up the practice?
It's your life,
and I'm sure you'll do whatever you like.
You always do.
How do you do??
I'm sorry to bother you,
but I was just passing by
And I thought I might pop in.
I'm very grateful for your time.
I appreciate the difficulty of your position.
I'm very grateful for your time.
I know you're busy balancing the
interests of your shareholders and customers.
Actually, how do you do that?
There's been a little mistake here.
Little for you, big for me
Normally, I wouldn't bother you,
but it's the crayfish season
and my boat
lies at the bottom of the sea.
Did you read your policy, Mr. Myers?
- I have a daughter.
- I'm sorry, you should have read your policy.
- Four people are facing ruin.
- You should have read your policy, mate.
- It's a wonderful painting.
- Did you read your policy, Mr. Myers?
- Yes it said 'fully comprehensive'.
- Excepting 'Acts of God'.
There's the thing. It doesn't say
anywhere what an 'Act of God' is.
It's because it's widely understood.
It's acts of natural destruction like tidal waves.
Locusts, pillars of fire, plagues of boils,
that kind of thing.
God's not in charge of that stuff anymore.
With science we can forecast the weather now.
- I'm sorry.
- You're sorry? I've lost my work, my home.
My ex-wife's partner guaranteed
the loan and my only asset
with his bloody caravan-park,
which is his only asset.
I didn't come here to take no for an answer.
This may seem an obvious question, but if I
was to rise from this chair and I should slip somehow
and this crutch was to disappear down your neck
and shove your epiglottis out your arsehole...
Would that be an ‘Act of God'?
I'm not leaving.
That's the worst fucking painting
I've ever seen in my life.
What are you doing?! I can walk,
for god's sake! Get my bag.
I have a life, you know.
You're a low-brow, bad taste,
sanctimonious, corporate arsehole!
I'm not finished with you.
I'll give you acts of God.
I'll give you locusts. Boils. I'll give you whirlwinds.
I'll give you the fucking works!
I'll get fucking mad!
You can jump out of your fucking windows!
Excuse me, Mr. Myers,
we've got a little back room today.
- Sorry I'm late.
- I started without you.
- Should you be taking those with that?
- No problem as long as you don't work heavy machinery.
Thank you very much.
Another one of these, pal, would be lovely.
- Let's go somewhere else.
- I like it here. Nice fascist simplicity.
We've got a wee job to do. We're gonna sue
Monarch Pestal Angel from here to the shithouse.
Don't be stupid. Armies of lawyers
have hammered out those policies.
Their liabilities are defined in minute detail.
What about God's liabilities?
Has anybody consulted him?
I'd love to help you. I love you like
a brother, but this is ridiculous.
I'm your brother.
You love me like a lawyer.
Have you met my brother?
He's gonna be a very successful lawyer.
No more drink.
Why don't you fuck...
Let me help you up.
- My skirt!
- I'm very sorry.
I didn't mean anything with that.
Can I buy you some... so sorry.
- Just piss off.
- Alright. I'm going.
I haven't even eaten anything.
I'm bloody starving.
'Scuse me, I'm sorry.
million years ago...
a seed of humanity was planted when a family
of chimpanzees decided to sit around the fire.
They started cooking on it, having
friends over, talking into the night,
they learned reason and manners.
Restaurants are directly descended
from that first gathering.
But the animal that entered my
favourite eating place yesterday
would not have been tolerated
even by those old chimps.
Drunk, stinking and abusive he proceeded to
disturb not only mine... oh my god, this gets worse.
It looks like you've made a friend there.
And I'm not going to help.
Couldn't say it very clear, huh?
This is just another one of
your little stunts, isn't it?
You dig a hole, everybody else falls in,
and you walk away feeling superior.
Not me, pal. Not this time.
- Good morning, The National.
- Anna Redmond, please.
She writes a column at your paper, remember?
Hi, this is Anna Redmond.
I can't come to the phone right now.
Do you know that experiments
on rats have shown that
they recognize the truth far more
quicker than journalists?
And with a wee bit of training a squid will
demonstrate a deeper grasp of moral principles.
You were only doing your job, and you didn't
know you were going to turn out to be a petty assassin.
You really wanted to be a nurse in Africa,
but you failed the medical.
I'm sure you're not there. You're probably
away giving the kiss of life to some fucking panda.
The fact is, modern journalism sucks.
Does it? I'm not so sure.
Of course it does. You told me it does.
That was before you became editor.
Look at this. Some little twerp three weeks out
of high school telling the world what he thinks.
It's all opinion and narcissism.
What's happened to reporting?
Three years ago I used to report,
I used to write stories.
- I was in Washington, Moscow, Beijing.
- You stuffed up Moscow.
I had food poisoning, I missed the coup.
Do you think that makes me feel good?
The fact is I was writing stories.
Where am I now?
I'm on talkback radio, writing columns.
Is that the column?
It's not journalism.
It looks like it, but it's not.
- You're a woman of influence.
- I'm a woman of attitude.
- You know what your trouble is?
- Being patronised? Being asked rhetorical questions?
You're very exciting when you're like this.
- I don't know why we haven't slept together.
- I do.
The reporter. Report. Go after a story,
I'm not going to stop you.
- So we skip the column?
- You still want the column?
You really wanted to be a nurse in Africa,
but you failed the medical.
I'm sure you're not there. You're probably
away giving the kiss of life to some fucking panda.
Do you think I've done
the right thing, Arthur?
I hope you're right.
There he is.
- How did it go up in town?
- Kicked buttock.
- Are they going to pay?
- They're not inclined to paying at this stage.
- What is that supposed to mean?
- It means I have re-registered.
You are not going to sue.
You're going to sue one of the
world's biggest insurance companies?
Apparently I wouldn't stand a chance.
I'm suing God.
I've sent writs on
his most prominent representatives.
We've got this fisherman issuing writs against
the churches. I'm not particularly religious,
but I've got a pretty good nose
for what's right and decent.
And I can smell an idiot a mile off.
Now it's time for our weekly chat
with Anna Redmond.
- Good morning, Anna.
- Good morning, Dirk.
What about this character suing God?
- It's a summons?
- That's the gist of it.
- It's not a prank?
- Some religious fanatic, I suppose.
- Something of that order, probably.
Leave it with me, Your Eminence.
Sometimes I don't know what
the world's coming to.
- Should you admit to that in your position?
- I'll try and keep it under my hat.
- What's your advise?
- Don't sell. It's still a bull market.
- What do you think?
- Let me look at it first.
There's a lot of very strange
people out there.
It's a stunt for money.
That's my view, but I could be wrong.
I wouldn't go that far, Dirk.
The insurance companies have been using
the 'Act of God' clause for at least years.
- So it's stood the test of time.
- Regardless of profound shifts in theological debates,
social and political changes,
and man's effect on the environment.
it's sort of a 'woolly mammoth'.
- A 'woolly mammoth'? I don't follow.
- Don't you?
- The mammoth died out.
- I know that, Anna.
Never mind. The insurance companies
have been under a lot of pressure lately...
As far as I'm concerned
it's a one-day-wonder.
- For once I agree with you, David.
- A wilful, egomaniacal idiot.
But David, it is Steve.
He leaves a stain on the couch and bolts.
- You know he won't go through with it.
I'll tell you what, Arthur.
It was a great idea coming down here.
Not many dogs have ideas as good as that.
- Hi. Caught any fish?
- Nah, just seagulls, tiger snakes, that sort of thing.
- Do you know someone called Steve Myers?
- Yes. Big Irish guy. Crutches.
- He's over there.
- Great. Thanks.
- Mr. Myers?
- No, not me. Got the wrong guy.
- I know you.
- No, no. Somebody else.
You're the guy from the restaurant.
I'm just a tourist from New Zealand,
I'm here on holiday.
I'm sorry you didn't like what I wrote.
I didn't like being knocked over.
What do you want me to do?
Jump in the ocean and drown?
I don't want you to do it.
Don't you want to talk to them?
Why don't you want to talk to them?
I don't want those people
crawling all over my family.
- You're gonna have to sooner or later.
- Go away and take your friends with you.
- Leave me alone and bugger off.
- You're better off talking to me.
- You? I don't think so.
Hurry up, there.
Come on, Arthur.
Will you behave yourself!
You're not a dog.
Look at the way you're rocking
the boat. Crazy person.
Stop the boat.
Thanks for the help.
Give him a good rub and be careful
with the ears. They're very delicate.
- Tell me again, what did you agree with her?
- I didn't agree to anything with her.
She wants an exclusive.
She holds the rest of them an arm's length,
wines and dines you, then writes a three page
colour feature showing you up as a complete moron.
Remind me, you've been
a media-expert for how long?
I read, I watch TV.
I live in the real world.
Oh, I see, the real world.
It makes sense now.
You know what I mean.
- Are you going to be famous, Dad?
- A famous idiot.
She loves me.
Since issuing the writs Mr. Myers has remained silent,
but the Anglican church has been quick to react.
A zealot of some description, most likely.
I wouldn't worry. His wheels have
come off somewhere. Poor fellow.
I'm surprised you do not know.
- I think you have to respond.
- Don't turn the other cheek?
- I think he could be dangerous.
He's more than a crank, Your Eminence, and I think
you'd get more respect if you'd get stuck in there.
He may be deluded,
but he's not gonna go away.
- Are you sure of this?
- My source is impeccable.
This is going to be a big story.
Bigger than you realise.
Shut up, Arthur.
Let's see who it is.
- You didn't think I'd be back?
I knew it.
I thought you'd be sooner.
I don't want to appear desperate.
- What have we got?
I bet you hate those,
catching them all the time.
I love them.
I just can't afford to eat them.
Is that a stunt, suing God?
- No, it's not a stunt.
- If it's not a stunt, it's a great story.
Yeah...story. You wind me down, then do a three
page feature on what a complete moron I am.
You can't win without the media.
- I just don't want them on my side.
- Oh, the big, bad media.
Excuse me, I've got you wrong.
You of course being the good media.
The highly principal, fair minded,
deeply insightful media?
Listen. What you're doing, suing God...
It's a brilliant idea.
You're going to the core, the kern of the existence,
and you're pulling a little wire.
Nobody is gonna understand it,
everybody is gonna misrepresent it,
and the whole thing is gonna be last,
like everything else that is any good.
I just thought I could help.
I'm not really suing God, you know.
I just hate the way that people use God as
some kind of giant all-purpose lying mechanism.
I know what you're doing.
I think you've cracked it.
I have to confess a personal interest.
I really hate insurance companies.
I really hate them.
A reasonable position, in my view.
I just want my boat back.
Maybe the company would settle if
I can just put enough pressure on them.
They've never settled. Trust me. They can't.
It would just open the floodgates.
You have to scare them. Really put the
wind at them. Only the media can do it.
That's why you need me.
I'll coach you.
Ladies and gentlemen, please put your hands
together for woman of the moment, Cressida Roache.
We've got a great show for
you today. Hero or heretic?
We're ready for you now.
Oh...the fucking Bible.
The fisherman from the south coast
who's brought a lawsuit against God.
Don't give them a lecture.
The camera deals in emotion, not reason.
- It doesn't need logic, like language does.
It's so powerful. It's annihilating.
It's changing the way we think.
Television has made the world less
rational now than it was years ago.
We're living in a mosaic of
shallow emotional responses like
- Pavlov's dog.
- Not me. I don't even watch TV.
- Not even like dogs. More like hamsters.
- Pavlov's hamsters.
Its essential function is
to trivialise the culture.
When you make it out there
and feel like you don't really exist...
- What was I saying?
- That I don't really exist.
We live in a world of simulations,
unconnected with real lived experience.
Cressida Roache is not a person.
She's a very careful construct.
A combination of familiar,
very commercial images.
You've got to force her back into a hole.
Humanise her. Really focus on her.
- Excuse me.
- We're coming.
Don't be dull and unanimated. Laugh a lot.
You know? Be yourself. Are you okay?
This way, please.
Could you please wait here for a moment?
You've got a tissue in your...
- Can I take it?
- Hi Steve. Cressida Roache.
Anna's filled me in on the background.
It's a fabulous story. Congratulations.
Mr. Myers, we're ready for you now.
- You okay?
- Good luck.
- seconds to air.
Live in ...
Who is this Steve Myers,
and what's his game?
We thought we'd find out.
Please welcome Steve Myers.
Many people might think this is the work of a crank.
How would you respond to them?
You find it amusing?
No. Well, yes. Somewhat.
Would you call yourself a religious man?
In the broader sense, perhaps.
But me being a fisherman...
- Sometimes when you're out at sea it's easy to...
- To get confused?
It's that thing, "What is God?".
And, indeed, "Where is God?",
when it comes to putting him in jail.
That's very funny.
- It's not a joke.
- Isn't it?
No. The joke is the insurance companies.
You give your money to some global corporation
on the pretext that they will cover
you for any eventuality. For any risk.
Then something happens and they won't
pay you, because they say God's responsible.
- You're assuming God exists?
- No, they are.
Logically, if your argument is
with the insurance companies...
There is no logic involved. Forget logic.
Logic has no business here.
If a woman is driving a car and she's in
an accident, and her daughter is injured,
and her daughter isn't covered by the insurance,
then the girl is virtually forced to sue her mother.
That's not to say that the girl hates
her mother any more than I hate God.
- This is unprecedented, isn't it?
This is the Bible.
I have marked a place.
I think you'll find that it says
"There is nothing new under the sun."
Nothing is unprecedented. That's the word of God.
I'm sure it offends some folks,
but I'm gonna fight these people.
- What about offending God?
- If God exists, I don't think he'd be offended at all.
Not if he has some sense of justice.
I think he'd be on my side.
- Steve Myers, thank you very much.
- Thank you.
Gerry, did you see him?
- What did I tell you.
- Good on you.
Thanks for your calming influence.
Hi. Maxime Jeffrey, Hawk Magazines.
Our readers would love to know more about you.
That's great. We'll be in touch.
You're good. Very good.
- You're very popular.
- Not better than I know.
Did you ever think of doing anything
like that, like Cressida?
No, I wanted to be a nurse in Africa.
Apparently, some of you think that
Myers is doing something decent.
and it makes me sick.
He's outraged some religious groups, but Steve Myers
seems to have struck a chord with the wider community.
The council of churches, together with
representatives of the Jewish community
meet today to discuss
the problem of world poverty.
Ladies and gentlemen,
let us pause for a minute's
meditation and reflection,
and ask God for wisdom
in our deliberations.
The fellow's been seen on TV.
It doesn't mean we have to take it seriously?
- The reverse normally applies.
- It's in every newspaper in the country.
'Does God have a case to answer'', 'Is there
anybody up there?'. It makes them look real.
It's the 'Me-society'.
God is dead.
We've lost our mystery.
Clout is what we need.
- Mystery and clout.
- Which one? The money or the box?
If you want to keep the money,
it's best to say that God doesn't exist.
I think we can take it as
granted that God does exist.
I hope he does.
- I spent half the morning singing to him.
- Could we be serious for a moment?
I am serious. If God's responsible,
we're responsible. Yes or no?
- We need a lawyer.
- Gerry Ryan's going to handle it.
If he can't get this nonsense thrown
out of court, no one can.
If you want my opinion, if the court's got any
sense they'll throw out the case in seconds
and Myers along with it.
And good riddance.
He's caused too much division in the community.
It's disgusting. That's what it is.
- The Federal Court of Australia is now in session.
- Be seated.
Call the case for hearing?
Myers versus God.
Gerry Ryan on the behalf of the Roman Catholic Church,
the Anglican and Presbyterian churches
and the Jewish community.
- Steve Myers on behalf of myself.
And the defendant is?
There is no defendant.
We're moving for a strike out on...
- The defendant is God.
- Who is not a person.
That is a moot point.
God and the churches are one.
They cannot exist without each other.
If God is responsible
for the sinking of my boat,
the religions are responsible.
- So you're suing the Church?
God is an entity with nominated
representatives, like a company.
- And the basis of your case is?
- If there was an 'Act of God',
then God is liable.
The churches are God's representatives on earth.
If they wish to deny liability
by denying the existence of God,
then they are guilty of contravening section
of the Trade Practices Act of .
"A corporation shall not, in trade or commerce,
engage in conduct that is misleading or deceptive."
And to deny that responsibility
is to contravene the Act.
The case doesn't merit the hearing.
It is frivolous, without legal precedent
- And Mr. Myers lacks any ethics.
- You can demand security for costs.
- The boat was worth what?
- $ . Your Honour.
Not a frivolous amount, Mr. Ryan,
even by your standards.
I'm not satisfied the action is entirely without merit.
I will let it go to trial.
Mazy from Foster. Go ahead, Mazy.
I just wanted to say that
Steve Myers is very brave.
This man has no scruples, no ethics
- And no case, if you ask me.
- We were asking. Is there anything else?
- I think it's immoral.
- As I said, he's upset a lot of decent people.
I'm Dirk Striker, and I'm unhappy.
I've got something to show you.
Houses lost in landslides,
flash floods, lightning strikes.
Acts of God.
Didn't you mention a drink?
- Is this your father?
- Yes. Aren't you gonna read the letters?
- You're thinking class action.
- I am.
Give me nightmares?
I don't want a class action.
- Do you want to go to the balcony?
If I go down with my boat that's one thing, but I
don't want to take some poor bugger down with me.
Why did you give up law?
Because I was good at it.
My father was a lawyer, his father was a lawyer
and I was expected to become a lawyer.
It's like being born a sheep,
or a moth.
It's not much of a life when
you can't call your soul your own.
- Are you a good fisherman?
- I was a much better lawyer,
but a happier fisherman.
I hated it.
The average punter goes to court expecting a little
justice 'cause some bastard stole his lawnmower.
What did you see?
Some supercilious toads talking gibberish,
the sole purpose of which is to make
him feel guilty, and the guilty look innocent.
It's the world turned upside-down.
I wouldn't drag anybody through that system
just to see them squashed at the end.
I'm certainly not going to do it to myself.
Did you ever think the Lord
delivered perfect justice?
Of course not. The most you
can expect is to do a little good.
I should warn you I have a brown belt in Ju-Jitsu.
I could very easily throw you onto the roof.
Read some of the letters.
Meet some of the people.
You're making a mistake.
I'll win this.
Nevertheless, we don't want
to make a martyr of this man.
I'm instructing you, Gerry.
- This is great. Thank you.
- Good luck.
- I'm only doing this for you.
- Yes, you're only doing it for me.
It was a mudslide. They said it wasn't our fault,
but they wouldn't pay anyway.
They said it was an 'Act of God'.
They said the water has to come from above,
otherwise it's not a flood.
How can a flood come from above?
It was humiliating.
They treated us like criminals.
How can this be right?
And they make you feel like
you're trying to cheat them.
- What did you say?
- Not very nice people.
No. Why would I know where he is?
I'll tell him if I see him.
- Gerry Ryan wants you to meet with him.
- Is that right? Let's go.
- No, I'm not coming.
- I need a witness.
- I don't think they let women in here.
- Don't be ridiculous.
We don't have women here as a rule.
Never mind, the camels moan, the caravan moves on.
I was hoping to meet
with Mr. Myers alone.
- I invited Ms. Redmond, is that all right?
- Of course.
Regular Bonnie and Clyde, aren't you?
My clients have instructed me
to offer settlement
for replacement value of the boat,
and you will cease all proceedings.
- How much?
- A considerable little set-you-up-nicely.
Unless you're planning on
giving it to the homeless.
- What if there were other plaintiffs?
- There are none, unless you choose to generate them.
There is an undertaking that you will cease
all proceedings in the press, in the court...
Jointly or separately,
just sign here and here and...
- I'll need some time to think about it.
- It's on the table now.
- Can I just have a little look?
- How much is it for?
$ . is the evaluation.
I suppose many people
would say good luck to you.
In the world of dog eat dog
you saw a dog. Clever.
Embarrass the churches
into paying for you,
the churches being the only people with
conscience enough to be embarrassed.
It is a generous offer, Mr. Myers.
Personally I'd be delighted if you refuse.
Would you excuse me for a moment?
Are you seriously thinking about that?
What about all the other people?
I didn't promise anything.
It's not as if you're trying to set
some precedent for humanity, is it?
Precisely. I'm not.
- He accepts.
- Of course he does. $ . for the boat,
$ . for the story. Ms. Redmond has
doubtlessly organised the TV network.
It's a brilliant scam.
- All done?
Explain to me how you could do
what just what you did?
It was really easy. I just told him:
"I'll take the money in dollar coins
So I can ram them up your
arse one at a time."
And you thought I would take
the money. How could you?
This is a class action.
About so far.
- What are you after? Some kind of moral victory?
Yes, I would prefer it to be moral, if possible.
Do you have lawyers?
Yes, me. I'm a lawyer.
This isn't a benefit for the legal profession.
- Who's picking up the bill?
- You are, and anyone else who wants to contribute.
Is this a political mass campaign?
This is a legal action.
A strangely affordable one.
these people will keep you in court
Until you're old, frail, sick, dead,
whatever comes first.
But you're stuffed anyway.
Now at least you have a fighting chance.
- That's ridiculous. Anyway, he's the Church's problem.
- You think so?
If he wins and they lose, who do you
think the churches are gonna come after?
What do we do then?
Nothing much, just prove God exists.
As the suit against God gathers momentum
religious groups around the country
are gathering to make their voices heard.
With some experts predicting
that if the action is successful,
the consequences will be profound, not only for
the Church, but for the global insurance industry.
In these most troubling and perplexing times,
may you bring to your humble servants...
What are the others doing about it?
They're all praying.
They should be praying for better lawyers.
We are looking at almost co-plaintiffs
and a final pay-out of $ million.
There has been a backlash against the outspoken
Mr. Myers from conservative Christian groups
who are urging their followers to peacefully
protest against him and his supporters.
These people are not returning my calls.
Is there anyone else I can ring?
I have no idea.
Could you give me ten minutes?
- I found some here I think we might call.
- Hold that thought, I promise I'll get back to you.
- What was the name of that insurance agent you wanted?
- Ask her. She knows all the names, all the people.
Who ordered this?
I need help.
- Forget it.
- How? There are people depending on me.
- You're dead right there are.
- Did you mention a drink, by the way?
You could have stayed down in that little town,
made a perfectly good living
from drafting or conveyancing,
But no, not you.
You're too good for the law.
Instead you become a bloody fisherman,
like some creeping Jesus.
Wasn't Jesus a carpenter?
Then the prodigal son
returns to the wicked city,
the great human rights crusader,
to take on Gerry Ryan?!
I get it. Jealousy.
Everybody needs a hobby.
Don't you talk to me about a hobby.
Your whole bloody life's been a hobby.
I came here for your help.
I want you on my side.
Join Steve Myers
in his lunatic unwinable case
so he can spend the rest
of his life fighting countersuits?
Join in the public humiliation?
You brought this on, and now maybe
you'll get the kick in the arse...
- You should have had when you...
- When I was what?
When you were ten.
When you were born.
- What the hell has happened out there?
- What are you doing here?
I thought I'd catch up on a couple of
people I used to know in a previous life.
- My sweetheart.
- What's happened?
- We were attacked by a bunch of loonies,
And they smashed the shower-blocks,
and they knocked over the empty...
They poisoned the water and I almost drank it.
Arthur did, and he was really sick.
We have to talk.
The bank rang.
We can't pay our loan.
We made one payment,
but we can't pay any more.
The caravan park's a miss. The insurance
company is giving us the run-around.
There's no money coming in.
- I'll see what I can do.
- Oh, you will, will you?
- David says you had an offer.
- Who told him that?
Why didn't you tell us? That was our
money and you turned it down.
You turned it down.
- I have a plan.
- We've got a plan. Let me tell you the plan for once.
We're gonna sell-up.
We can get something cheaper in Perth.
My family's there.
They're gonna help out.
- How am I supposed to see Rebecca?
- I'm not going to Perth.
We don't have a choice.
Do you know what we need, Arthur?
Some kind of sign.
What do you reckon?
No. I didn't think so.
I'm sorry, it's very late.
- Give it a good push forward.
- That's a good idea.
- There's a handle somewhere.
- What does it look like?
It looks like a handle, funnily enough.
I'll just get the sheets.
I thought I might go see Ryan.
He may have a family. He may understand.
If Ryan thinks he's got you on a spit, he's just
gonna enjoy all the more watching you squirm.
When I was about ten
our house burned down,
and the insurance company wouldn't pay.
It wrecked the family.
My father, he was a salesman,
he was never home much anyway, but...
After that he went away a lot,
and he stayed away.
When he did come home it was even worse.
What I'm saying is...
Look, no visible scars.
I know what you're going through.
You can't, if you don't have a child.
I'm sorry, but you can't.
No, but I was a child.
I've survived in a fashion.
I can't be separated from her.
No, you can't.
I don't know what to do.
Don't know what to think.
Your bed's made.
- I believe in you.
- You do?
They will too.
- Good night.
- Good night.
The Greeks would say the gods were
holding it aransom, wouldn't they?
Testing you from your doubt.
I wrote . words of
you reduce it to words of twaddle
and bury it on a crossword page.
- I don't think it was objective...
- Who's got to you, Hal?
- Be very careful.
The Greeks would say the gods were holding us to
ransom. They're testing us, filling us with doubt.
The Greeks are bastards.
You're very real.
That's kind of unusual.
I like it.
It's kind of exhilarating.
Fuck. I don't believe it.
Stop the car.
Pull over here.
It will be worth your while,
I promise you.
Excuse me, gentlemen.
Do you mind if I borrow this?
It's still alive!
This fish has more decency in its arsehole
than you'll ever have in your entire body.
And you, my so-called brother!
You bloody hypocrite!
How could you sit here paddling
in the ooze with this bucket of slime!?
I'll see you both in court.
Who are you fucking looking at?
You have invested me with
a very grave responsibility.
If we lose,
the Church will never again be safe.
It is not a matter for compromise
It's not even a matter of money.
Though, if you lose,
within a year you'll be penniless.
Lose, and in this cynical, mercenary age
you'll never be credible again.
If the churches lose
they'll hold you responsible.
'Act of God'? There'll be an endless cycle
of litigation and you will lose a lot of it.
I'll win this
And I know you won't forget
who saved your banquet.
- No turning back now, right?
- No turning back.
The feelings are running high as we
await the appearance of Steve Myers...
I have nothing to say.
The Federal Court of Australia is now in session.
- If they're experts in acts of God...
- Then they must be experts in the ways of God.
Mr. Havers, you've been an insurance
assessor with Monarch Alliance for...?
- Seven years.
- And it was you who came to inspect my boat.
- Could you tell the court what you saw there?
- Nothing. It was gone.
- It was struck by lightning?
- I believe so.
- Did you see any evidence of storm?
- Yes. Quite a bit of wind damage.
- Acts of God?
- I couldn't say.
Yet my boat was sunk by an 'Act of God'?
It looked very much like it,
but it's not me who decides.
This committee employed by your company to
decide these matters, they'd be religious experts?
- Not necessarily.
- But they're experts in acts of God?
- Aren't they priests or theologians?
- No, it doesn't work that way.
- Mr. Piggott, you're the general manager
and chief executive of Monarch Alliance?
Would you explain to the court the purpose behind
the 'Act of God' clause in insurance policies?
The purpose is to protect
the vast majority of policyholders
against occasional calamities
that may befall the few.
- Does it mean that God caused the event?
- Heavens, no. Although he may have for all we know.
- It's a figure of speech.
- Like 'out on a limb'?
Or 'away with the fairies'.
- It's not to be taken literally?
- Absolutely not.
- Thank you, Mr. Piggott.
- Why don't we call things by their real name?
An act of storm, an act of weather,
an act of lightning.
The names of the things that have
ruined the lives of my co-plaintiffs.
Because it's customary
to call them 'Acts of God'
Would that be because 'God' has a certain ring to it?
There's a certain moral authority
- that exists only in the name of God?
He's knocked off your copyright,
haven't you, Mr. Piggot?
Would you say that the sinking
of the Titanic was an 'Act of God'?
I beg your pardon?
That was before my time.
It was a ship. It struck an iceberg, and...
perhaps you saw the film?
Yes, that's right. The orchestra played
that lovely little tune as they went down...
- I don't think it was one of ours.
- It was deemed an 'Act of God'.
I'm not surprised. An unassessible risk, an iceberg.
Who would have thought?
- And yet the insurance companies paid out.
- Did they?
Yes, they did. In order to avoid the
bad publicity. Now there's a funny thing.
One last thing. Last year your
company declared profits of $ billion.
Yes, something of that order.
Did you remember to thank God for it?
Mr. Myers has given notice that his
opponents have a fight on their hands.
The day belonged to Mr. Myers
as he exploited the Church's position...
Record high temperatures, strong winds and electrical
storms are fanning bushfires in many parts of the state.
Steve Myers kept the pressure on today,
forcing each witness onto the back foot.
These witnesses, insurance company executives,
had trouble justifying...
I quite liked you today, you know that?
- Remind me how you came into my life?
- I talked to Arthur.
- He said you were beautiful, and smart...
- He always was the brains of the outfit.
It was the house I was born in.
When we lost it, it broke my husband's heart.
- The insurance company didn't pay?
- They said it was an 'Act of God'.
- Mr. Ryan?
The insurance industry reckons that the
'Act of God' is just a figure of speech...
The churches can't possibly agree with that.
- I suppose for legal purposes...
- What about for religious purposes?
For moral purposes?
For philosophical purposes?
Is there such a thing as an 'Act of God'
that isn't meant to be taken seriously?
I shouldn't think so.
It means what it says,
Do you think my boat was sunk by an 'Act of God'?
Who can say with these things?
The insurance companies
think they can.
But we don't go running around saying when
the weather's bad it's an 'Act of Insurance'.
Did God make the bolt of lightning
which struck my boat?
Yes, and no.
These things do not have easy answers.
If you can't tell me what's an 'Act of God'
and what isn't, and these men can't tell me,
how can some shiny-arse
with a diploma in accountancy?
If God does exist,
the Churches must be liable.
The Churches can only win if they
prove God does not exist.
Do you want to tell them?
Aren't you hopelessly compromised, Your Eminence?
Isn't it one of God's commandments,
That we mustn't take his name in vain?
Isn't that exactly what they've been doing?
Using his name to justify a
legitimate legal fiction. A lie.
It comes close to it,
I would concede.
Isn't that blasphemy?
How can you tolerate it?
To be truthful, I suspect we haven't
given it a lot of thought until now.
Do you think it's because the Churches,
whose combined wealth could easily
pay off the entire third world debt,
are massive shareholders in financial institutions,
including the global insurance industry?
What are you doing
in bed with these people?
We are not perfect, Mr. Myers.
We've been on the wrong side
of things very often. We are sinners.
We are blind to much injustice,
we have blood on our hands.
- Guilty, no question.
- I didn't ask for your confession.
Good, it would take eternity to hear it.
I want to know if you recognise
any of the same flaws in yourself?
A little intolerance, perhaps?
A little too much self-luck?
I'm not the one on trial.
And nor is God, I assure you.
My god is an eternal wellspring
of love, hope and inspiration for millions.
He moves mountains.
How does your faith compare with that god?
- It's a poor world without faith.
- I know.
I mean love of God.
I mean feeling God work on your heart.
Have you felt that?
Compared to that loss,
the loss of your boat is nothing.
A speck of dust. Not even a speck.
God might have been trying to teach you that.
It was a sign?
- I wouldn't rule it out.
- Thank you.
- You are excused, Your Eminence.
- I think we might take a break.
The court is adjourned for lunch.
Anna, I'm sorry,
but you brought this one yourself.
That's a joke. Any decent legal system would have
thrown it out and jailed the animal for months
for public nuisance. Instead of that,
he's swanning around like some pop star,
and we're looking at half a billion
in claims if you lose.
At least the cardinal
straightened him up a bit.
That bloody took time to fight after all.
What are you going to do?
Make his miserably life more miserable.
I'm gonna nail the bastard.
- Have we taken care of the girlfriend?
- Ms. Redmond's been taken care of.
- Bye, Anna.
- Good luck, Anna.
Westerly winds from the Red Centre
continue to fan bushfires north of the city,
casting an eerie glow over the
deepening drama of the Myers-God trial.
Your Honour, I'd like to call
Mr. Bart Gidman of Whaleboat Bay.
Retired senior constable Gidman
considered Steve Myers a troublemaker...
- Makes him look criminal.
- I think it's quite a good likeness.
Obstructing a bulldozer, drunk and disorderly,
He was having a pee off his boat.
The former policeman also said that
Mr. Myers' domestic arrangements
involving his ex-wife and her de-facto
husband were morally questionable,
- And inappropriate for a year old girl.
- She's talking about me.
I said, switch it off.
Myers had apparently paid no tax for years,
and confirmed he was currently under investigation.
There have been questions about
Mr. Myers' motives and character
that have threatened
to derail his entire case.
Cockroach! Bloody sewer rats!
This is like something out of Minutes.
It's not gonna work for them, though.
The judge isn't gonna buy it.
- What's the matter?
I'm not gonna let this
bastard get away with it.
There you are.
I'll put you on the stand later.
- To say what?
- To say that your brother told you he's running a scam.
- But he didn't.
- Yes he did. Don't you remember?
Just you wait and see.
Your honour, I'd like to call...
I swear by Almighty God that the evidence I shall
give will be the truth, and nothing but the truth.
- You are a journalist for The National?
- No, I got fired.
- Was it something to do with Mr. Myers?
- Ms. Edmond and I are not on trial.
No, God is. And at any other time in
history they'd hang the both of you for it.
The Almighty surely has the right
to know the character of his accuser.
I ask you again,
was it anything to do with Mr. Myers?
- The thought crossed my mind.
- You're his partner in this, aren't you?
You have a keen interest in his case,
you've written several articles,
made numerous radio appearances.
You've beaten it up?
You could sell his story for twice
the value of the boat, couldn't you?
Will you tell the court about Michael?
We have the letters.
I presume you mean...?
He died. I found him on the carpet.
I don't know what happened.
I should tell the court that Michael was a goldfish.
An insured goldfish.
How much did you get for it
after years and letters?
- I don't remember. Who cares?
- $ .
Do you know how many claims you've
made over the past years?
Injury to a cat from a
faulty spring in a sofa.
That nearly killed her.
In fact, she did die later.
Not before you stood on her
and claimed that too.
It is a history of unremitting obsession.
- I think that's overstating it.
Everyone was legitimate.
What else is insurance for?
- You don't like insurance companies, do you?
Will you tell the court what happened
on the rd of March, ?
? Don't be ridiculous.
It's a quiz, is it?
rd of March...?
Martin Luther King got shot?
Grace Kelly had a baby?
The war ended?
I don't know. I was seven.
- What were you doing?
- Your house burned down.
The insurance company
refused to pay, didn't they?
- They said it was arson.
- Oh, you remember now?
- That it wasn't arson.
- Maybe, maybe not.
It wasn't arson. It was their excuse
because they didn't want to pay.
We lost everything.
You've never forgotten, have you?
My father went to jail.
He was innocent.
Isn't it true that because of that incident
years ago, you are here now with Mr. Myers?
When you saw his little game, you saw a chance
to satisfy your lifelong passion for revenge?
Attempts to make the biggest
claim in history, against God.
It is a fraud, a hoax, a swindle.
By day, Your Honour, they seek justice in your court,
- at night they chase the loot.
- This is ridiculous!
Why are you on the phones to the
magazines, if not to sell your story?
That's not true.
That's a lie.
I have small affidavits from two editors.
I am happy to put them on the stand.
We are fucked.
Why didn't you tell me?
It was not relevant.
Nothing he said was relevant to your case.
Of course it was relevant.
We just got stuffed there.
- What's all that stuff about arson?
- It was not arson.
- My father was a hundred miles away.
- Isn't that what arsonists usually are?
We are buggered.
All that effort is completely out the window.
How many claims was it?
So what!? Do I persecute minorities?
Do I stick pins into little old ladies?
I made legitimate claims.
How come you're taking his side?
He slandered me, he slandered my father.
He tried to humiliate me.
This is an attack on me
When it's you it's shocking, when it's me...
- I'm not a crank.
- I'm not a crank.
I wouldn't even be doing this
if I only wanted my stuff back.
I want my boat, it's all I ever wanted.
I'm not the one following people, trying to
flog the story to some bloody newspaper.
The only reason I made that
call was because of you.
So that if everything fell apart
at least you had some money.
So why didn't you say you'd been fired?
For supporting you. Isn't that a joke?
Why didn't I know? Why didn't I think?
I don't know.
Please just spare me the time.
How the fuck are you
supposed to get out of here!?
Ryan wants me to testify
you said you had a scam going.
And naturally you told him where to stuff it?
He's gonna put me on the stand. If I deny it,
he'll say that I'm lying to protect my brother.
If you deny it?
What did he bribe you with?
Listen. Steve, please,
for once in your life listen.
You can't possibly win.
Do you know why?
Because they can't afford to lose.
They've had you at moments,
but your glory's gone.
And excuse the pun,
but you were sunk before you started.
And you'll be sunk even deeper in
or years when you're still in court.
They know that keeping you there
is their only option.
Where will you be then?
And where will Rebecca be?
Drop your case.
You've dropped your case.
If you give up your obsession,
I'll give up mine.
- You're not a crank.
- No, you're the crank.
I could be in court for the next years.
How does a moral victory sound to you?
There's a lot to be said for a moral victory.
This may contain a few clues.
"He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it."
- A bit close to the bone for me.
"Wheresoever the carcass is,
there the eagles shall be gathered together."
That's very interesting.
You do know everybody thinks
we're sleeping together?
- Yes, well, why not?
What would you say if I was to tell you
I was falling in love with you?
Well, I'd say...
I don't know.
Something I made up.
- Do you always sing afterwards?
- No, I think this is the first time.
- It's very nice.
- Thank you.
You're quite wonderful,
you know that?
You make me feel wonderful.
Absolutely, unprecedentedly wonderful.
Rescue services are
stretched to breaking point
with bushfires now penetrating
the outskirts of the city.
There are long delays as city-bound
traffic has been diverted,
and motorists are advised to be patient.
In federal court Steve Myers'
case seems likely to collapse...
Following revelations about his past,
and those of his companion, Anna Redmond.
Look who's here.
- Darling princess Ornatharicus.
- I'm Jules.
No matter what happens today,
I'm definitely gonna pay you back.
There's no need to go to Perth.
I can set up a practice right here.
I will pay you back.
Where is Arthur?
I've saved him a seat.
I thought what they did to you
yesterday was terrible.
- They're pretty tough on him too.
- But he deserved it.
- Is she nice?
- She's very nice indeed.
I'm proud of you, whatever happens.
Nothing could stop us now.
Is it enough, do you think, a moral victory?
What other kind is there?
In the great scheme of things.
- I call David Myer.
- Your Honour, I'm withdrawing from the case..
What? He can't do that.
- Yes, he can. But he'd better explain.
- What is this?
I brought an action against
someone who doesn't exist.
- The defendant does not exist?
- What about these characters?
If God doesn't exist, they don't
exist as his representatives.
The God of the 'Act of God'
does not exist.
Not one person in this courtroom has
been prepared to say that he does.
It's a lie that they use to
rob decent, honourable people,
the kind of people
who have joined me in this action.
There's something else.
If God exists,
I don't think he sits around
sinking people's little boats,
I don't think he causes
earthquakes and landslides,
or dreams up ways
to make people's breaks fail.
If there is a God, surely he is everywhere.
He's in everything. He's even in this courtroom.
He's in the sea, he's in a lobster,
he's in a line of Robert Burns,
he's in a woman's thigh,
the soft anvil of creation.
He's in the face.
How can I sue these things?
"All other things to the destruct should draw,
only love hath no decay."
That's what I told you.
Maybe you were right. My boat was a tiny little
speck of dust in the great scheme of things.
Losing it was nothing.
Let's say God did sink my boat.
How can I sue God for an act
that led me to this woman?
For an act of love.
- Pax vobiscum.
- Bless you.
- It's a sign.
- A miracle.
- A winged messenger.
- It's a fucking cockatoo.
I think, under the circumstances,
court is adjourned for minutes.
Mr. Myers did more than prove that
the insurers god is a false one.
- A very strange thing happened today...
- He showed us
that even in this globalised world,
love is still a powerful player.
Two very strange things happened today...
Mr. Myers has established to my satisfaction
That an 'Act of God',
as defined by the insurance companies,
is oppressive and exploitative,
offensive to reason and religion...
and almost certainly wrong in law.
He has withdrawn his case,
but he's made his point indelibly.
The position of the insurance
companies is untenable,
and in my view unlikely to survive
concerted challenge in the court.
the case is,
with the greatest respect,
the case was against the churches.
Yes. And they will have to
consider their position.
- Amor vincet omnie.
- Love conquers all.
Court is adjourned.
Please tell the American people
how you feel right now.
I feel terrific, thank you very much.
I'm very, very happy.
What happens with your co-plaintiffs?
Mr. David Myers will be representing them.
- Will they be suing God?
- No, the insurance companies.
The way is now open,
thanks to my brother.
- Is the world a better place today?
- Me? I think so.
Every right-minded person knows that
I've been even-handed throughout the case,
but now that it's over I'll say this:
It's a great victory for ordinary people,
like you and like me.
- Did we win?
- I don't know.
It's been a tumultuous couple of hours
at the stock exchange
where all the large insurance
stocks have crashed.
There's panic at insurance offices
around the city
with thousands of customers demanding refunds.
A spokesman for Monarch Alliance says...
- I suppose the best is to take the long view.
- You're telling me?
We survived, but I certainly
don't have a sense of jubilation.
- I have a depression.
- A terrific victory, Ryan.
- Your grace, you got crucified.
- The games are over. We shall be rich.
Cal's suing? Good on you.
Against Monarch Alliance
and five other insurance companies.
Section of the Trade Practices Act.
Several billion dollars...
- God is our copyright.
- I'll get straight onto it.
We won't be needing you on this one, Gerry.
Not this time.
- God is love.
- What if we've been reading you people?
It's what happens when we
give up the moral high-ground.
I'm against all these lawsuits.
The church is our proper place.
- They're gonna sue you for billions.
We've got to get back to our
core business. The little people.
- We could help fund their case.
- I said to Sam,
you want to win this case
you've got to prove God does not exist.
That's easier said than done.
I saw an article which said
they'll soon be able to, apparently.
- A science magazine?
- No, Presbyterian Monthly.
It's a question of faith. Either you
believe He doesn't exist, or you don't.
Pinch me. Tell me I'm dreaming.
How long is it going to take you
to pay that money back?
Twenty, thirty, forty years.
You've just been offered $ .
for your story.
- No, I couldn't do that.
- You want to be a lawyer all your life?
Actually, it's worse than that.
You've been offered $ . for
the complete, unabridged story.
The full kissy-wissy, touchy-watchy?
- The steamy story.
- Our story.
- I can pay Les back.
$ . would buy a beautiful boat.
I always fancied sailing to Shanghai.
It's too late, it's ruined.
But I've heard Hanoi is wondrous.
- There's pirates on the way.
- Bugger them.
Arthur, how do you like
the sound of that? Hanoi.
They eat dogs in Hanoi.