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(2011), NR [PG-NR*] (1hr 23.25min)

Final Score
Analysis Date
Date Posted
Influence Density
October 7, 2011
October 9, 2011

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(While the Scriptural references are certainly not subjective, my commentary may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)

If Scriptural references appear, the full text appears at the end of the Summary / Commentary.

(2011), NR [PG-NR*] ... a noble destination does not excuse an ignoble path

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Digital Filmz International, Skipstone Pictures
Distribution (US): Bridgestone Multimedia Group
Director(s): Johnny Remo, Lance Bachelder
Producer(s): Lance Bachelder, Dan Backman, Johnny Remo
Story by: Dan Backman, Johnny Remo
Screenplay by: Lance Bachelder
Cinematography/Camera: Lance Bachelder, Johnny Remo
Film Editing: Lance Bachelder
Casting: Gabrielle Evans
Viewed on Bridgestone Multimedia Home Video

I do not remember viewing a teen film that did not portray the quintessential teen (or teens) with a know-it-all, "It ain't good enough no mater what 'it' is" attitude. This film is no different. Maybe that is the way teens are supposed to be [Prov. 22:15] but you can bet teens will get emboldenment for such an attitude in films that portray them with such an attitude. This film is no different.

All-growed-up Luke Harris (Justin Schwan), a high school senior is sure of what it is he wants to do for the rest of his life ... surf. But his parents, Janet (Raquel Gardner) and David (Greg Carlson), who simply do not understand, have strange desires for Luke. They want Luke to go to college to get an education. After years of sacrifice to save for Luke's education they will even pay for it.

Luke has a chance to prove to his parents that he can make it as a surfer. An opening on the local surf team is coming up. But Luke must win in a competition to earn the slot on the team. In addition to his dad, standing in Luke's way to becoming the new team member is Matt McCoy (Andy Shephard) who has his sights set on the team opening as well. But Luke is confident he will be the one who will rise victorious.

So, Cutback Luke is ready to commit the rest of his life to the waves. By the way, "cutback" is a surfing maneuver to "cut back" to the crest of a wave in the foam to get more time on the wave.

As things progress in Luke's attempts to avoid college and get on the surf team, cute "church girl" Emily Lopez (Kelsey Saunders) appears and "lures" Luke into the church youth group headed by ex-surfer Pastor Shane (Danny Smith). There Luke decides it might be worthwhile to investigate other options on the path of his life, Emily being high on the list of priorities.

It was not until after Luke's BFFL, Casey Sanchez (Angel Cruz) committed his life to Jesus then died in a traffic fatality collision the day after he got his driver's license that Luke started asking hard questions. Fortunately he got answers ... the right answers.

Luke indeed found redemption in the loving arms of God but his path to redemption was not wise and humble. Rebellion and arrogance toward his parents. Drunkenness. Defiance. Disobedience. We might all take a moment to realize that while Luke's destination being the foot of the Cross is blessed indeed, a noble destination does not excuse an ignoble path. And it is the portrayal of that ignoble path that can serve as a template and emboldenment for negative behavioral choices of the viewer, especially the teen viewer. The end does not justify the means.

In a spirited discussion with his parents wanting him to go to college but he wanting to surf, Luke displays a considerable number of darts of disrespect. While his father essentially lays down the law about Luke's obligations, Luke's mother does that glare at the father in front of Luke showing Luke her disapproval of his father's words, expressions, justification or something. I would like to offer up a little advice on such parental interface during discussions with their offspring. Mom, don't do that. At least not in front of the child(ren). You are certainly entitled to your opinion but showing opposition to the father in front of the son or daughter gives the son or daughter immeasurable "justification" to continue in and even amplify his/her disrespect of the father. And that door swings both ways. If the father glares at the mother as she "lays down the law" the son/daughter now has all the reason in the world to continue and even amplify his/her disrespect at the mother.

In Schwan's defense I would like to offer that he appeared more comfortable with one of his final scenes, that of giving grace at the family supper table than with his portrayals of arrogance and defiance.

With a final score of 79 Cutback etched a spot along side PG-equivalent films (68 to 86 out of 100) in the comparative baseline database. But be aware that the Impudence/Hate content investigation area score is 44 out of 100 - fully R-equivalent. Likewise the Drugs/Alcohol content investigation area score is R-equivalent at 44. The alcohol content of this film makes it a significant danger.


Following are brief discussions of the content per individual content investigation area. As always the Findings section of this report is the best source for discovering the full accounting of the content of this film.

Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - 88 out of 100
Luke's father is a police officer. One time he displays his firearm. Other than that, the only content that applies to this content investigation area is the traffic collision fatality.

Impudence/Hate (I) - 44 out of 100
Here is where one of the two spikes in assaults on morality and wholesome ethics appears. Luke is heavily disrespectful of his parents and practices defiance and disobedience repeatedly. Even though one of Luke's mentor characters reminds Luke he must honor his parents, it is presented almost as background and without power or significant importance. God told us in the 5th of the Ten Commandments that we must honor our parents. And God gave no conditions under which we may not honor them. It is safe to assume God was speaking of honorable and noble parents with solid ethics founded in His Word. [Exod. 20:12] God has provisions for dealing with parents who are abusive of the children He gave them. Severe provisions. [Eph. 6:4, Matt. 18:10]

Sexual Immorality (S) - 100 out of 100
There is nothing even remotely connected with sexually immoral display or behavior in the entire 83.25 minutes of the show.

Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 44 out of 100
Here is the second of two spikes in assault on morality and wholesome ethics. There is much dismay regarding alcoholic beverages in this movie. There is a teen drinking party, teen drinking and teen drunkenness. By the findings of the American College of Physicians (ACP) this is of great concern.

A 2002 study by the ACP revealed that adolescent exposure to drinking in and as entertainment undeniably leads to abuse of alcohol among underage viewers. The finding entitled Relation Between Parental Restrictions on Movies and Adolescent Use of Tobacco and Alcohol reports that of 4544 youths from grades 5 through 8 of fifteen Vermont and New Hampshire middle schools (90% of the youths were under fourteen years old) only 16% were completely restricted in their entertainment diets. Within the ACP study population, the prevalence of having tried alcohol without parental knowledge was

o 46% for those with no viewing restrictions
o 16% for those with partial viewing restrictions
o four percent for those with complete viewing restrictions. [Eph. 5:18]

There is nothing to say that viewing smoking in and as entertainment does not carry the same danger of influence as viewing drinking. Actually, the same matter of behavior influence applies to any behavior demonstrated in and as entertainment, including good behavior.

Offense to God (O) - 96 out of 100
Luke tries to excuse his own shortcomings with the shortcomings of his father: he tries to "heap sin upon sin" by trying to excuse his own with those of his father. [Isa. 30:1] The sins of one do not excuse the sins of another. To expand upon that, the second time of a sin does not excuse the first. Nor does the third time excuse the second ... nor does the thousandth excuse the first, nor the first the thousandth.

Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
There are no murders or suicides in this film.


If needed to focus or fortify, applicable text is underlined or bracketed [ ] or bold. If you wish to have full context available, the Blue Letter Bible is a convenient source. If you use the Blue Letter Bible, a new window will open. Close it to return here or use "Window" in your browser's menu bar to alternate between the CAP page and the Blue Letter Bible page.


  • Eph. 6:4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord
  • Isa. 30:1 Woe to the rebellious children, saith the LORD, that take counsel, but not of me; and that cover with a covering, but not of my spirit, that they may add sin to sin:
  • Prov. 22:15 Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him. ["Foolishness" is ivveleth {iv-veh'-leth}: senselessness, thoughtlessness, recklessness, folly, foolishness, foolish, foolishly; from the same as eviyl {ev-eel'} meaning of one who despises wisdom; of one who mocks when guilty, is quarrelsome, is licentious. Note that the "rod" (of correction) does not have to be punishment and must never be physically harmful. A simple "good job" when warranted can serve as the "rod" as well. If you would like to know more, please visit our Spare the Rod ... Spoil the Child: A Parental Perspective article. It is rather long though.]
  • Exod. 20:12 Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
  • Matt. 18:10 Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven. ["Despise" is kataphroneo {kat-af-ron-eh'-o}: to condemn, despise, disdain, think little or nothing of, to look down upon (which includes abuse, even by influence or bad example, lying to them, enticing/teasing them, seducing them and/or their thoughts, involving them in sin or crime, etc.). What do you want the angels for your kids to say to God? By the way, "little ones" is mikros meaning less by birth, younger. All of your children are "less by birth" than you. All of them are younger. So, "little ones" includes at-home teens, the most easily influenced, morally malleable age stratum.]
  • Eph. 5:18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. [Since "drunk" is methusko {meth-oos'-ko}: to intoxicate; make drunk; to get drunk; become intoxicated, "wine" can be any intoxicating substance including illegal drugs or abuse of prescription drugs. The issue is do not abuse the body by intoxicating it [1 Cor. 6:19]. Though it is not a sin to drink, it is a sin to get drunk OR to influence to get drunk OR to drink in defiance such as underage drinking.

    Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry

  • Jer. 37:9 This is what the LORD says: Do not deceive yourselves, thinking, 'The Babylonians [the destroyers from within] will surely leave us.' They will not!
  • Ps. 12:8 The wicked freely strut about when what is vile is honored among men [when enough people continue to defend what is vile, embrace it, enjoy it, want it, submit to it.]
  • Col. 2:8 Beware lest any man [by his influence] spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
  • 1 Cor. 15:33 Be not deceived: evil [kakov: of a bad nature, not such as it ought to be] communications corrupt good manners.
  • Rom. 5:19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
  • Jude 1:4 For there are certain men* crept in unawares [secretly slipped in among us], who were before of old ordained to this condemnation [whose condemnation was written about long ago], ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness [a license for immorality], and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. [*men: anthropos {anth'-ro-pos}, generic, a human being, whether male or female]
  • Matt. 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
  • Luke 17:2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones. [Offend: skandalizo {skan-dal-id'-zo} - scandalize; to entice to sin; to cause a person to begin to distrust and desert one whom he ought to trust and obey; to cause to fall away.]
  • Ps. 119:133 Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me [let no sin rule over me].
  • John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
  • 1 Thess. 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil. ["Evil" includes all things that are sinful.]


    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.
    (The objective heart of the CAP Analysis Model, independent of and insulated from the Summary / Commentary section.)

    Cutback (2011) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - 88 out of 100
  • police firearm for defense/protection
  • traffic collision fatality

    Impudence/Hate (I) - 44 out of 100
  • teen arrogance, rebellion and defiance, repeatedly
  • father stirring up son's wrath [Eph. 6:4]
  • teen staying out late to avoid parents
  • teen sneaking in late including in defiance of father's rules
  • parental argument
  • facial piercing

    Sexual Immorality (S) - 100 out of 100
  • none noted

    Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 44 out of 100
  • teen drinking party
  • teen drinking, repeatedly
  • teen drunkenness
  • offer of booze to underage teen

    Offense to God (O) - 96 out of 100
  • teen trying to excuse his own "sins" with the "sins" of the father (Heaping sin upon sin [Isa. 30:1])

    Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
  • none noted

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    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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    * CAP Equivalence to MPAA Rating Scale:
    Please note our new manner of indicating a film's Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) rating in comparison with the CAP equivalence such as "PG-13 [R-13]." The first term is the Motion Picture Association of America's (MPAA) rating. The second term [in brackets] indicates that which the film earned under the CAP analysis model. In the example, "PG-13 [R-13]" indicates the MPAA rated the film PG-13 but the film earned a CAP final score in the scoring range earned by R-rated movies in the comparative baseline database. Other comparative terms used might be "PG [13-PG]", "G [PG-G] or even 'PG-13 [PG]" as was the case for Alien vs Predator. I doubt there will ever be a "G [R]" used, but only time will tell. The CAP analysis model is Rock-solid. The MPAA is not.

    The current CAP to MPAA** nomenclature is:

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    PG-13 equivalence: PG-13
    R equivalence: R-13
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