ChildCare Action Project (CAP): Christian Analysis of American Culture


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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to our youth through you,
their parents and grandparents, in His name by His Word

Ice Age (2002), PG
Analysis Date: March 15, 2002
CAP Score: 81
CAP Influence Density: 0.33

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NOTE: If you do not want the plot, ending, or "secrets" of a movie spoiled for you, skip the Summary/Commentary. In any case, be sure to visit the Findings/Scoring section -- it is completely objective to His Word and is the heart of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie.


If Scriptural references appear, the full text appears at the end of the Summary / Commentary likely using a mix of KJV and NIV.

ICE AGE (PG) -- ...a bright and dazzling achievement in computer animation with a warm story ... to indoctrinate your children to the theory of evolution.

Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
Director(s): Carlos Saldanha, Chris Wedge
Producer(s): Lori Forte, Christopher Meledandri
Written by/Screenplay: Michael J. Wilson, Michael Berg, Peter Ackerman
Visual Effects: Oktay Ahiska, Mitch Kopelman, John Siczewicz
Music: David Newman, Justin Skomarovsky
Editing: John Carnochan

PG movies of the CAP comparative baseline database earned scores from 86 to 68 out of 100. "Ice Age" earned a score of 81. I guess that truly makes Ice Age a PG. It is a nice story targeted at adolescents down to toddlers ... IF you like them to hear about slicing others up for eating, about dying and threats to kill and if you like them to see, of course, fecal matter being flipped in someone's face.

This newest installments in the shaping of your young kids' worldview is indeed a bright and dazzling achievement in computer animation with a warm story. It even presents a quite touching episode of story-telling with moving stills art which reminded me of my Art Appreciation class in college. Ice Age is also an excursion into the supposedly pre-ice age, post-dinosaur, dawn of man theory of evolution. It is also replete with cartoon violence akin to that in "Buggs Bunny/Road Runner(tm)" cartoons with some of it quite a bit more worldly. I guess that is why it is rated PG (the MPAA calls it "mild violence").

As the animal population embark on a south-for-the-winter migration, a Mammoth named Manfred (voice of Ray Romano), a Sloth named Sid (voice of John Leguizamo) and a Sabertooth Tiger Diego (voice of Denis Leary) brave hardships and dangers to return a rescued human boy to his people. It is curious that many of the dozens of migrating species shown travel in pairs rather than flocks and herds.

Loner Manfred is very reluctant to get involved with Sid because of Sid's non-stop mouth. Diego gets involved for very selfish reasons. When a pride of Sabertooth Tigers attack a human settlement, a mother and her baby are separated from the men. Running for her life, in desperation she jumped off a cliff into a river far below. She survived long enough to get the baby ashore. When the mother placed the baby on a stone on the bank, Manfred and Sid were there. Though in stares of disbelief and avoidance as the baby starts to slip off the rock back into the river, Manfred revealed the soft heart inside his ton of gruff and grumble by rescuing the baby. When Manfred and Sid looked back to the rock, the mother was gone.

What to do! What to do! They decide to go to a place they know they will find the humans to return the baby. While all this is going on, the Sabertooth pride leader graphically decides he is hungry for the baby and dispatches Diego to take it from Manfred and Sid and bring it back as a meal. I know fairy tales have spoken for eons about animals eating humans, such as the big bad wolf eating Red Riding Hood's grandmother and the boy who cried "Wolf!" too often getting eaten by a wolf, but there was something more sinister about something in this animation. Maybe it was the level of detail in the personification of the animals.

Personification of animals in this animated feature was convincing to the point the observer could substitute people they have known for the characters. Each character had a personality with a complex attitude and with hopes, dreams, expectations, plans, emotions -- just like man. Even a non-human cinematic character, when portrayed with human qualities, may cause the observer--especially children--to feel a bond with that character if the observer has enough experiential maturity to connect onscreen portrayal with life experiences. And when these speaking, feeling characters are abused onscreen or get away with what would be aberrant behavior in human children, it is inevitable that the young observer will be influenced by it. How and how much depends on a great deal of factors. But influenced they will be.

Ice Age presented no uses of foul language, no presentations of sexual programming of any kind were noted, and absolutely no drugs and/or alcohol uses. While there were deaths and attacks, there were no murders. Violence [Phil. 4:8] and promotion of the theory of evolution are likely the only concerns for Christian parents and grandparents. The violence was akin to the "Buggs Bunny/Road Runner(tm)" character violence and the entire story had foundation in defiance of the Truth, of Creation [Gen. 1:24-31]. Indeed, Ice Age is a good way to indoctrinate your children to the theory of evolution if you are into that sort of thing. The listing in the Findings/Scoring section will reveal all that was noted.


If needed to focus or fortify, applicable text is underlined or bracketed [ ]. 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.

  • Phil. 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
  • Gen. 1:24-31 And God said, "Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: livestock, creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind." And it was so. God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground." Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground--everything that has the breath of life in it--I give every green plant for food." And it was so. God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning--the sixth day.

    *******Food for Thought*******
  • 1 Cor. 15:33 (KJV) Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. (NIV) Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.
  • Jude 4 For certain men* whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord. [*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 [or for] one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto [or for] me.
  • Luke 17:2 It would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around his neck than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. [cause by teaching or example]
  • Ps. 119:133 Direct my footsteps according to your word; 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.

    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.

    Ice Age (2002) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W):
  • great fall
  • cartoon violence, repeatedly
  • a character jumping off a cliff believing he could fly
  • talking of eating a human baby and personified characters
  • animal attacks
  • threat to kill
  • deaths of personified do do birds as if they were flies
  • moving stills portrayal of killing
  • battle with several implied deaths
  • talk of slicing up personified characters for food

    Impudence/Hate (I)(1):
  • attention drawn to fecal matter

    Sex/Homosexuality (S):
  • none noted

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • none noted

    Offense to God (O)(2):
  • "An eye for an eye" as justification for revenge
  • story foundation in the theory of evolution

    Murder/Suicide (M)(3):
  • none noted

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    NOTE: The CAP Analysis Model makes no scoring allowances for trumped-up "messages" to excuse or for manufacturing of justification for aberrant behavior or imagery, or for camouflaging such ignominy with "redeeming" programming. Disguising sinful behavior in a theme plot does not excuse the sinful behavior of either the one who is drawing pleasure or example from the sinful display or the practitioners demonstrating the sinful behavior. This is NOT a movie review service. It is a movie analysis service to parents and grandparents to tell them the truth about movies using the Truth.

    "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 nearly seven 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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    (1) As noted in CAP Special Report-001, "Investigation Area and Scoring Trend," of the six CAP Investigation Areas, Impudence/Hate was the strongest presence in all four movie classifications. It has a strong revelation about the entertainment media.

    (2) The use of the three/four letter word vocabulary without God's name in vain is incorporated into the Impudence/Hate Investigation Area. The use of God's name with or without the four letter expletive is incorporated into the Offense to God Investigation Area. There is no duplication.

    (3) Only portrayal of successful murder or suicide are incorporated into Murder/Suicide. Portrayal of attempts to commit murder or suicide and deaths by police action or war are incorporated into Wanton Violence/Crime.

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