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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones through you in His name by His Word
(2007), PG [Hard PG*] (1hr 41min)
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(While the Scriptural references are certainly not subjective, my commentary may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Avi Arad & Associates, Crystal Sky Pictures, MGA Entertainment
Distribution (US): Lionsgate Entertainment DVD
Director(s): Sean McNamara
Producer(s): Avi Arad, Eric M. Breiman, Benedict Carver, Kyla Kraman, Isaac Larian, Steven Paul, Susie Singer Carter
Screenplay by: Susan Estelle Jansen
Story: Adam De La Peña, David Eilenberg
Cinematography/Camera: Christian Sebaldt
Music: John Coda
Film Editing: Jeff Canavan
Casting: Joey Paul
Production Design: Rusty Smith
Art Direction: Rosario Provenza
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
This analysis was prepared from a Lionsgate Entertainment DVD.
Bratz: The Movie (the live character version) earned the lowest possible PG score. The range of scores earned by PG movies in the comparative baseline database is 86 to 68 out of 100. Bratz earned a final score of 68. That makes Bratz a "hard PG." Why? Largely due to social warfare and cruelty throughout, "lite" sexually-oriented content such as mannerisms and dress, and rather heavy use of God's name in vain in that three syllable sentence with His name trailing it which Hollywood apparently wants us to think is so popular with teens. Maybe it is, but there is no need to spread and perpetuate the abuse of God's name by including it in and as entertainment.
The story? There is not much of one. For the most part it is social warfare between the Bratz and the high school student body president and rich social engineer, Meredith Baxter Dimly (Chelsea Staub). Meredith is also the daughter of Principal Dimly (Jon Voight). This role for Voight leads me to believe the aging Voight is scraping the bottom of the opportunity barrel. He is little more than an empty-headed figurehead puppet of his daughter with no chutzpah at all and is not very good at it at that.
Not the kind of girls to whom I would like my sons to attach. Nor the kind of girls I would want the attitude and value development of my girls to emulate. Lots of quite short skirts and dresses. Little concern about how much below-the-navel or upper posterior skin shows. Behaviors and posture to force the viewer on private parts. Brashness, provocativeness and alluring expression. Too worldly for me. The live actresses may not be as bold in their "sexy-cutsie" as the dolls but the imagery is there.
As clear-skinned freshman students of Carry Nation high school, the girls -- cheerleader Sasha (Logan Browning), soccer star Chloe (Skyler Shaye), science and home-ec fanatic Jade (Janel Parrish) and journalist/singer Yasmin (Nathalia Ramos) -- do social warfare with Meredith and her socially supreme clique. Meredith's specialty in maintaining control of the student body is her segregation of the students into their assigned factions from the cool kids to the goth.
For two years the girls, who have been best friends forever (BFFs) all their lives, bow to Meredith's social engineering and become more and more distant. Meredith's intent in keeping the Bratz separated is to manipulate her competition for student body president -- Meredith sees one of the girls as a true contender. But the girls eventually realize what Meredith is doing and their common history wins out. The girls again become BFFs. Then is when the girls decide they are going to have their revenge on Meredith's brutal social controls.
The show climaxes in an extravagant 16th birthday party for Meredith, complete with an elephant and a MTV crew. There is where the 'feel-good with a vengeance' events unfold.
Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
The only instances of violence and/or crime noted were two instances of fighting, one of them while shopping. Though these matters of violence may not seem that significant on the surface, any exposure to the use of violence to settle friction can and does take its toll on the coping skills of the observer, especially the young. [Prov. 16:29]
Social segregation and warfare is the theme of this film. Along with teen arrogance at a parent, punk attire and mannerisms, conceit, lots of lies and more, the saturation of the film with social friction caused the film to earn an Impudence/Hate investigation area score equivalent to a "very lite R" or "hard PG-13." [Rom. 12:18]
Sexual Immorality (S)
Jade changes clothes in open school grounds with only the legs of the other three girls to shield her from sight. She does this because she did not want her parents to know what clothes she wore at school. This is a point of deceit as well as a point of exhibitionism, making it fit the criteria of either the Impudence/Hate or the Sexual Immorality investigation area. However, each instance of assault on morality and wholesome ethics can be incorporated into one and only one investigation area.
This investigation area indeed found the most assaults on morality. So much so the area score is 24 out of 100. R-rated movies earn final scores of 54 and below, clearly making this area of Bratz equivalent to some R-rated features, not in the intensity of individual examples of assaults on morality but in the sheer number of them. See our CAP Rule of 1000 for more information on this relatively new technique of filmmakers loading a film with lots of "lesser" examples of ignominy to give the film the "feel" of a more severely rated film. The less-than-54 score in Sexual Immorality earned by this film is the reason for the red CAPCon Alert Light.
Additional examples of behavior/imagery that fit the criteria of the Sexual Immorality investigation area include teen girls in underwear, choosing clothes based on how much skin they show, camera angle and posing to force the viewer on private parts, scant swim wear on teen girls, exceedingly short skirts, exposure of below-navel and upper posterior skin and more. So much if the ignominious content is so transparent. For example, the scant swim wear were apparently inserted just to show some more skin since the flow and connectivity of presenting swim wear was so weak. In other words, it was obvious the filmmakers put the swim wear in there just to show more skin. There was no other identifiable purpose to having the girls in swimsuits. We might as well face it, the very reason for the lessening of the the amount of skin-covering fabric in swimsuits over the decades is to show more skin. [1Tim. 2:9]
As it is with any onscreen behavior, the demonstrations of lowering the threshold of acceptability in and as entertainment regarding personal choices of manners and dress can proselytize the moral core of the viewer. [3 John 11] While 3 John 11 uses "evil" to speak to the point, anything that challenges, distorts, counterfeits or corrupts God's standards to excuse personal choices can certainly be called "evil." First Corinthians 15:33 applies as well.
Fortunately, the content of the film was entirely vacant of any instances of booze, drinking, drunkenness, illegal drugs and their consumption, abuse of prescription drugs or smoking.
Offense to God (O)
UNfortunately, the film is not vacant of abuse of God's name. Nine times someone used His name in vain though each use was without the four letter expletive. [Deut. 5:11] Deuteronomy 5:11 shows us that God is quite serious about using His name in vain. With the uses of God's name in vain, the plethora of appearances of kids in goth dress plus the jealousy/revenge dragged this investigation area score down to equivalence to the same scoring envelope magnitude as such content in some R-rated films.
The cut of Bratz: The Movie I saw is free of any instances of murder or suicide.
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***Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry***
As always, it is best to refer to the Findings/Scoring section -- the heart of the CAP analysis model -- for the most complete assessment possible of this movie.
Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
Sexual Immorality (S)
Offense to God (O)
|There are some in the entertainment industry who maintain that 1) violent programming is harmless because no studies exist that prove a connection between violent entertainment and aggressive behavior in children, and 2) young people know that television, movies, and video games are simply fantasy. Unfortunately, they are wrong on both accounts." And "Viewing violence may lead to real life violence." I applaud these associations for fortifying 1 Cor. 15:33. Read the rest of the story. From our years of study, I contend that other aberrant behaviors, attitudes, and expressions can be inserted in place of "violence" in that statement. Our Director - Child Psychology Support, a licensed psychologist and certified school psychologist concurs. For example, "Viewing arrogance against fair authority may lead to your kids defying you in real life." Or "Viewing sex may lead to sex in real life." Likewise and especially with impudence, hate and foul language. I further contend that any positive behavior can be inserted in place of "violence" with the same chance or likelihood of being a behavior template for the observer; of being incorporated into the behavior mechanics and/or coping skills of the observer. In choosing your entertainment, please consider carefully the "rest of the story" and our findings.|
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In the name of Jesus:
Lord, Master, Teacher, Savior, God.
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