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Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP Ministry)
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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones through you in His name by His Word
(2005), PG-13 [PG-13*]
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(This section may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Columbia Pictures Corporation, Tall Trees Productions, 3 Art Entertainment, Katalyst Entertainment, Katalyst Films, Regency Enterprises
Distribution (US): Sony Pictures Entertainment, Columbia Pictures
Director(s): Kevin Rodney Sullivan
Producer(s): Joseph M. Caracciolo, Andrea Giannetti, Jason Goldberg, Steve Greener, Steve Greener, Ashton Kutcher, Bernie Mac, J. Roberts, Erwin Stoff, Betty Thomas, Betty Thomas, Matthew Tolmach, Jenno Topping
Story: William Rose (*Guess Who's Coming To Dinner*), David Ronn, Jay Scherick
Screenplay: David Ronn, Jay Scherick, Peter Tolan
Cinematography/Camera: Karl Walter Lindenlaub
Film Editing: Paul Seydor
Casting: Victoria Thomas
Production Design: Paul Peters
Art Direction: Gary Kosko
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
Well! Guess Who squeeeeaked through by the skin of its teeth to stay in the PG-13 realm. With a final score of 55, it is at the dregs of the PG-13 barrel. And that is too bad, too. The high wattage master of comedy, Bernie Mac gives a large portion of the power to this comedy about a black family's daughter bringing home a white boyfriend for dinner. From Stanley Kramer's 1967 Guess Who's Coming to Dinner from Columbia which had a white girl bringing home a black man for dinner, this mirror image of it was a delightful romp into forced racial homogeny ... with teeth. Sharp teeth that cut deeply into wholesome morality.
Dapper and bright New York businessman Simon Green (Ashton Kutcher) and the beautiful Teresa Jones (Zoe Saldana) become an item. They fell in love. He is white. She is black. But what does that matter? They are in love. She measured the time they have been in love from the day they met. Simon measured the length of their love from the first time they ... This admission of sexual immorality was one of the first of the many "teeth" in this film.
A little trivia here. There was interracial kissing in Guess Who. Even in the 1967 Guess Who's Coming to Dinner there was no interracial kiss. Such was not done. Not until the Star Trek sci-fi icon William Shatner as Captain Kirk and the grande and lovely Nichelle Nichols as communications officer Lt. Uhura locked lips in a 1968 Star Trek episode, Plato's Stepchildren. I have it on tape. It was the first ever interracial kiss on television, a kiss Nichelle admitted she "really enjoyed." It was a forced kiss, forced on Kirk and Uhura by the enemy mental giants who were trying to force Dr. McCoy to stay on their planet. Nichelle said she almost quit Star Trek because of the kiss but Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. talker her out of quitting.
If Simon and Theresa as a pair were to survive, it came to the obvious duty of meeting the parents. Theresa wanted dearly for Simon to get along with hers: the jock bank officer Percy A. Jones (Bernie Mac) and the wise peacemaker Marilyn (Judith Scott). So, Simon and Theresa headed for a weekend with mom and dad. Hers.
The first meeting goes "well." The pair arrive in a taxi driven by a black man. As Percy greeted the driver, thinking he was Simon since he was black, an innuendo about sexual relations between the driver and Theresa blocked Simon from being recognized as Theresa's boyfriend. But eventually Simon is introduced as Theresa's boyfriend, Simon. "That her boyfriend name, ain't it?" exclaimed the shocked Percy.
From there, all manner of racial friction abounded and every conceivable interracial opportunity is taken ... until the formula ending of camaraderie between Simon and Theresa's family.
The film was quite enjoyable ... except for the tons of ignominy which could have very easily been left out without sacrificing any of the power of the film or its performers. It was sort of like enjoying a large chunk of pecan pie but biting down on a hard shell fragment with nearly every bite. The flavor was rich and the calories were plentiful but the pain was relentless.
Among those teeth were 39 uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary [Prov. 8:13, Eph. 5:4, Col. 3:8] plus God's name in vain once with the four letter expletive and ten without [Deut. 5:11]. While there was no nudity or intercourse seen, there was detailed admission of intercourse as if the practitioners had done nothing wrong [Prov. 30:20, 1 Thess. 4:3, Hebr. 13:4, James 1:15]. Booze, drinking and drunkenness were frequent [Eph. 5:18]. The listing in the Findings/Scoring section reveals all that was found.
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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.
(The heart of the CAP Analysis Model)
Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
Sexual Immorality (S)
Offense to God (O)
Christian Educators Association International
|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 more than eight 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.|
|In the name of Jesus: |
Lord, Master, Teacher, Savior, God.
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