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

Entertainment Media Analysis Report

I'll Be Home For Christmas (1998), PG
CAP Score: 75, CAP ID: 0.46

Thomas A. Carder
CAP President

Executive Summary/Commentary

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I'll Be Home For Christmas -- without Jesus. Even though the movie was about Christmas, not once was Jesus mentioned. And the only time God was mentioned was in vain and as the father of Christmas. I'll Be Home For Christmas was Sexology for preteens. How else would you describe a movie for preteens in which a young adult male was stipped of the towel he was wearing -- of all he was wearing. About the only things resembling Christmas were the snow and the commercialism.

Filled with lies coated with humor, this movie could quite easily become a source of confusion: when should we tell the truth and when should we not? And if we should, how much of the truth? Hidden under the predictable message of warmth and compassion ....... nothing. The very reason for CHRISTmas was not there. I don't think there was even a cross ... anywhere, not even in or on the ornaments. There was, however, a plethora of lying, cheating, and a male and female in bed together - twice (although clothed); promotion of homosexuality, sensual invitations, and references to male anatomy.

As much as I was offended by the movie, it earned a CAP score squarely in the range of CAP scores for other PG movies. More evidence of the objectivity of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model. But we use numbers, not a set of letters to tell you of the content of a movie -- an EXCELLENT tool for comparing movie to movie.

Granted, the movie provided a good and warm ending to a seemingly tame movie but the other stuff does not go away just because of some hype of a redeeming "message." The other stuff is still there taking its toll, piece by piece, bit by bit, just like the little pin you lost in the couch. And just like the little pin in the couch, the 'other stuff' will likely surface ... someday ... maybe painfully.


FINDINGS/SCORING: I'll Be Home For Christmas (1998) CAP Thermometers

Wanton Violence/Crime lost no points in the intermediate of maximum levels.

Impunity/Hate (I)(1) lost no points in the intermediate of maximum levels.

Sex/Homosexuality lost no points in the intermediate of maximum levels.

Drugs/Alcohol lost no points in the intermediate of maximum levels.

Offense to God (O)(2) lost no points in the intermediate of maximum levels.

Murder/Suicide (M)(3) lost no points in the intermediate of maximum levels.

All points lost due to ignominy in this movie were incorporated into the minimum level, including
  • eight uses of God's name in vain without the four letter expletive
  • two examples of the three/four letter word vocabulary
  • cheating
  • many examples of lies, such as deciet, lies to avoid discovery, and lies about payment of fees
  • bribing son to come home
  • a male and a female in bed together twice but clothed each time
  • sensual invitation
  • imprisonment of a young man in a locker twice
  • "Got bu-- warmers in the car now."
  • promotion of homosexuality
  • as a sleeping old woman's head fell into a young man's lap "Hey! Get outa there!"
  • a young man trying to sleep in the same motel room with a woman
  • "GET A LIFE, DAD! " by a daughter
  • "I wish I were dead"
  • replacing words in a song with sexual words
  • "...spawned intelligent life..." about earth
  • male is only a bath towel and nudity when the towel was ripped from him
  • a prayer to "father Christmas"
  • references fo male anatomy
  • dinner wine
  • the entire show about Christmas without Jesus mentioned even once, and God only in vain.

    In accordance with the numeric comparative baseline database of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model, I'll Be Home For Christmas (1998) presented programming equivalent to R-rated material in Sex/Homosexuality. Material equivalent to PG-13 programming was found in Impunity/Hate and Offense to God. The movie was equivalent to PG-rated programming in Wanton Violence/Crime and G-rated programming in Drugs/Alcohol and Murder/Suicide. Thus, I'll Be Home For Christmas is equivalent to 17% R-rated programming, 33% PG-13 rated programming, 17% PG-rated programming, and 33% G-rated programming.

    (1) As noted in CAP Special Report-001, "Investigation Area and Scoring Trend," of the six CAP Investigation Areas, Impunity/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 is incorporated into the Impunity/Hate Investigation Area. The use of God's name with or without the three/four letter word vocabulary is incorporated into the Offense to God Investigation Area. There is no duplication. As required of the Holy Scriptures, unless God's name is used with reverence to His glory and praise, its use is considered in vain, whether literal or euphemistic.

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

    Please remember we believe that if even one of the six Investigation Area scores for a movie is equivalent to the CAP comparative baseline database scoring range for R, PG-13, or PG material, the entire movie should be regarded as so rated.  For example, if only Wanton Violence/Crime earns a score equivalent to R but all other Investigation Areas earn a score equivalent to G, THERE IS R-RATED MATERIAL IN THE MOVIE AND YOUR KIDS WILL SEE IT AND HEAR IT IF THEY WATCH THE MOVIE!

    Additional reviews of this movie may be located at "Movie Review Query Engine at Telerama."

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    In the name of Jesus:
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    Thomas A. Carder
    ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP)

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