Why Was Monty Python Anti-Zionist Scene Cut From The Life Of Brian?

For all fans of Monty Python, and Rebel Voice is but one, this is a special treat. Anyone who has watched The Life Of Brian will remember the crack suicide squad who appeared at the end of the movie when Brian was on the cross. They promptly killed themselves for no apparent reason other than they were a suicide squad and wanted to prove it.

At the time, many thought that their appearance was just one more strange quirk to be expected of the Python team. They were wrong. The following clip provides context for the suicide squad and their actions.

This clip was edited from the final cut. The reasons have become fairly clear.

The Monty Python team made a strong statement about religion and fanaticism in The Life Of Brian. It is regarded as not only one of the funniest movies of all time, but also one of the cleverest. The crack suicide squad were, in fact, Zionist supremacists. They are depicted as such in the following clip. They are also compared to Nazis, a comparison that many across the globe readily and accurately make today with regard to the rogue state of Israel. It is a comparison that would be deemed anti-Semitic under the IHRA definition of that term.

The Python team were well ahead of their time in not only their comedic genius, but also in their assessment of geopolitical affairs in the Middle East. The message from the comedic team, therefore, is clear to even the most reluctant supporter of Palestine. Zionism can be equated with Nazism in the 1970’s (when the movie was made) just as it can be today.

What is of interest though, is that while the released version of The Life Of Brian does poke fun at Christianity in a light-hearted manner, and although it also casts a critical and comedic eye upon our perception of society at that time, it does not cast serious aspersions upon Zionism in the way that would appear to have been first intended, as evidenced by the content of this short passage of film.

The question could be asked, just what pressures were brought to bear upon the Python team and their backers to coerce or force them into editing content openly critical of Zionism, that provided necessary context for a later scene?

The following video contains a number of edited clips from the movie. The anti-Zionist scene is at 9:15. Take a look at the emblems on the helmets of the Zionist suicide squad. Enjoy.

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12 Responses

  1. I have read every book by & about Monty Python & all of them state, especially Python themselves, that the scene was cut because it dragged on & did not fit with the flow of the movie. It was cut after previews when the members of Python agreed that the movie worked better without it. No group, whether it was Jews or Christians or Hollywood executives could tell them what to do or what they couldn’t do. That’s why they are the greatest comedy group ever


      1. Mr. Smokestoomuch

        No producers or distributors could tell them what was OK to put out. You just don’t seem to get it. Michael Palin’s diaries has the day to day goings on & is a great source, as well as Idle’s & Cleese’s autobiographies.


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