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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
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(2012), PG [13-PG*] (82.25min)

Final Score
Analysis Date
Date Posted
Influence Density
October 20, 2012
October 26, 2012

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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.

(2012), PG [13-PG*] ... A bad influence does not have to be real to influence badly.

Production (US): DreamWorks
Distribution (US): DreamWorks Home Entertainment
Director(s): Eric Darnell, Conrad Vernon, Tom McGrath
Producer(s): Mireille Soria, Mark Swift, Holly Edwards
Screenplay by: Eric Darnell, Noah Baumbach
Music: Hans Zimmer
Film Editing: Nick Fletcher
Casting: Leslee Feldman, Christi Soper Hilt
Production Design: Kendal Cronkhite-Shrindkin
Art Direction: Shannon Jeffries
Viewed on DreamWorks Home Entertainment DVD

It might be useful to remind our readers the CAP Analysis Model treats any onscreen animated behavior that could reasonably be duplicated by children as equally influential as the same behavior performed by live performers: that, for example, animated violence has as much power to desensitize and embolden the youthful viewer as does violence by live performers. Indeed, portraying an aberrant behavior as an animated feature does not absolve the performance of negative influence. A bad influence does not have to be real to influence badly.

The Central Park Zoo crew; the lion Alex (voice of Ben Stiller), the hippo Gloria (voice of Jada Picjett Smith), the zebra Marty (voice of Chris Rock), the giraffe Melman (voice of David Schwimmer) travel to Europe in hopes of finding a chance to get back to New York. At Monte Carlo, Captain Chantel Dubois (voice of Frances McDormand) of local animal control gets wind of the zoo crew after they literally fall into a casino. Los fugitivos escape the clutches of Captain Dubois by hitchhiking a ride on a circus train. There they meet a number of circus regulars such as the Russian tiger Vitali (voice of Bryan Cranston), the cheetah Gia (voice of Jessica Chastain) and sea lion Stephano (voice of Martin Short). Lying about their expertise, Alex convinces the circus animals to let the zoo crew tag along and show new techniques such as the Americano Trapeze. But Dubois is always on their "tail" through Europe and all the way to New York since she does not have a lion ... trophy on her wall.

The film is rated PG by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) for mild action and crude humor. The CAP Analysis Model finds enough content for the overall magnitude to be equivalent to some films rated PG-13 in the comparative baseline database of film analyses, thus making this picture a 13-PG*. It is indeed equivalent to some R-rated films in violence (W) and impudence/hate (I). The lack of gore typical of R-rated features does not purify the violence or insulate the young viewer from its influence.


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

Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - Zero out of 100
The violence content of this film comes mostly in the form of repeated sequences of action violence of varying intensity. Additional matters such as threatening another with a knife and broken bottle, multiple physical assaults and attempted murder by drugs combine with criminal acts such as breaking and entering to yield an overall violence/crime content equivalent to many R-rated features.

God has a strong position regarding violence. Of His many admonitions against violence from Genesis to Revelation, Proverb 16:29 puts the matter rather succinctly. In Proverb 16:29 God warns that violence is enticing: that it is "catching"; that it leads one into the way that is not good. Several centuries after God "published His findings" about violence, man plagiarized God's Word by four professional public health agencies publishing their findings which warn that viewing violence in and as entertainment can, among other things, lead the viewer, especially the young, to real life violence and to believing that violence is an effective means of settling conflict.

Impudence/Hate (I) - 31 out of 100
While there are no uses of profanity there are three maskings of profanity, i.e., innuendo of profanity, once of the most foul of the foul words. Other examples of impudence and/or hateful demonstrations include rudeness, reckless disregard for personal safety, a child being forced up the anus or vagina of an elephant and lying -- quite a bit of lying. God has some serious consequences for unforgiven lying. One of the consequences is denial of entrance into Heaven. [Rev. 21:8]

Sexual Immorality (S) - 64 out of 100
Sexually immoral content includes mostly what the writers apparently feel are boiler room caliber crude humor such as innuendo, reference to nudity, repeated attention to and display of a human-like posterior, exaggerated female anatomy and staring at it, women as toys/ornaments and pelvic thrusts.

These ignominy each and all may seem innocuous. If they do it is because of the incessant exposure to them causing us to become desensitized to their evil. God warns us that if the sentence against (consequences for) an evil work, even against wholesome ethics such as displaying sexual immorality, is not quickly carried out, we become hungry for more and more of it and in increasing severity, indeed expect it by caving in to its influence. [Eccl. 8:11] God calls such teases and enticements "delicacies" to which we must not let our hearts be drawn. [Ps. 141:4] The dissonance created by men creating such "delicacies" which violate His Word and our submission to them even though we know that by His Word we must not is an example of an element of the Spiritual war we live with every day. Be strong and submit only to His Word. Invoke consequences against the men who place such evil work before our children by not being customers/patrons of their work. The creators of such evil work will soon get the message when their income suffers.

Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 88 out of 100
The only content noted applicable to this investigation area is the repeated use of drugs (tranquillizers) to control characters and smoking (once, of bananas).

Offense to God (O) - 92 out of 100
Fortunately, God's name is not abused even once throughout the 82.25 minutes of the movie. But gambling is noted as is imagery of a devil.

Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
No murders or suicides were noted. An attempted murder with drugs was noted but it was incorporated by the Wanton Violence/Crime (W) content investigation area. Attempts at murder or attempts at suicide as well as deaths by police action, war or defensive killing are not incorporated by this content investigation area, only portrayals of completed murder and/or suicide.



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  • Prov. 16:29 A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good. [The issue is the violence, the 'way that is not good' no matter how "small" or "fantasy" or "justified" the violence might seem, and its "leading" effect on the observer. "A violent man" can be any character of any age, any gender, human or not in the act of committing (demonstrating in the case of entertainment) violent behavior/action whether for good or evil OR the violent behaviors/actions themselves. Such exposure can and does embolden the viewer into aggression, especially youth. It took years for the American professional health community to finally affirm, probably without knowing it, that which God told us in 1 Cor. 15:33 below. See also Joint Statement on the Impact of Entertainment Violence on Children: Congressional Public Health Summit for more information. Their findings include:
    --> Children who see a lot of violence are more likely to view violence as an effective way of settling conflicts. Children exposed to violence are more likely to assume the acts of violence are acceptable behavior.
    --> Viewing violence can lead to emotional desensitization towards violence in real life. It can decease the likelihood that one will take action on behalf of a victim when violence occurs.
    --> Entertainment violence feeds a perception that the world is a violent and mean place. Viewing violence increases fear of becoming a victim of violence, with a resultant increase in self-protective behavior and a mistrust of others.
    --> Viewing violence may lead to real life violence. Children exposed to violent programming at a young age have a higher tendency for violent and aggressive behavior later in life than children who are not so exposed.
    Further, God speaks darkly of violence 56 times in the Old and New Testament of the KJV.]
  • Rev. 21:8 But the [unforgiven] fearful [deilos {di-los'}; timid, cowardly], and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers [sexually immoral], and sorcerers [all forms of evil/magic to force, manipulate or do harm], and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. ["Timid" and "cowardly" as used in this verse does not mean humble or meek. It means cowering in fear when, e.g., someone threatens you and your loved one and you cower in the shadows to save yourself as your loved one is victimized.]
  • Eccl. 8:11 Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil. [When men (such as filmmakers) can continue to demonstrate sins ("evil work") such as violence, filthy communications and sexually immoral acts in and as entertainment, they will continue to do so with impunity and desire to do more and we as viewers will desire more of it with increased intensity.]
  • Ps. 141:4 Let not my heart be drawn to what is evil, to take part in wicked deeds with men who are evildoers; let me not eat of their delicacies. [Maybe it sounds a little extreme to call such sexually immoral work in and as entertainment "evil" but ask yourself "What would Jesus do? and you will have your answer.]

    Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry

  • Jer. 37:9 - 10 This is what the LORD says: Do not deceive yourselves, thinking, 'The Babylonians [the destroyers from within] will surely leave us.' They will not! Even if you were to defeat the entire Babylonian army that is attacking you and only wounded men were left in their tents, they would come out and burn this city down. [The "destroyers form within" do not have to be army warriors. They can be the ones who destroy through corruption of moral standards as well, such as filmmakers who perpetuate desensitization against wholesome standards. They aren't going anywhere, folks. Not until Jesus comes again.]
  • 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. And remember, mom/dad, "little ones" is mikros, meaning less by birth; younger. All of your children are younger than you and less by birth than you. So, "little ones" includes at-home teens.]
  • 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.)

    MADAGASCAQR 3: Europe's Most Wanted (2012) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - Zero out of 100
  • action violence of varying intensity, frequent
  • breaking and entering
  • physical assault with multiple slaps
  • reckless endangerment with knives, repeatedly
  • threat with knife and broken bottle
  • multiple firearms to control
  • reckless gunfire
  • prison break
  • fighting with weapons
  • multiple assaults on law enforcement personnel
  • attempted murder by drugs

    Impudence/Hate (I) - 31 out of 100
  • desertion
  • regurgitation in detail
  • rampant destruction of private property
  • lying, repeatedly
  • wielding a knife to intimidate
  • physical rudeness
  • child being forced up an elephant's anus or vagina
  • masking of the most foul of the foul words
  • masked profanity, twice

    Sexual Immorality (S) - 64 out of 100
  • vulgar innuendo
  • reference to performing in the nude
  • attention to and animated display of human-like posterior, repeatedly
  • pelvic thrusts
  • women as toys/ornaments
  • exaggerated female anatomy (clothed), repeatedly
  • rude gaze

    Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 88 out of 100
  • use of tranquilizers to control, repeatedly
  • smoking

    Offense to God (O) - 92 out of 100
  • gambling
  • devil imagery

    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:

    For G rated Films with
    G equivalence: G
    PG equivalence: PG-G
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-G
    R equivalence: R-G<
    For PG rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-PG
    PG equivalence: PG
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-PG
    R equivalence: R-PG
    For PG-13 rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-13
    PG equivalence: PG(13)
    PG-13 equivalence: PG-13
    R equivalence: R-13
    For R rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-R
    PG equivalence: PG-R
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-R
    R equivalence: R
    For NR rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-NR
    PG equivalence: PG-NR
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-NR
    R equivalence: R-NR
    ** G, PG, PG-13 and R are registered trademarks of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA).

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