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


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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to parents and grandparents

MVP: Most Valuable Prmate (2000), (PG)
CAP Score: 96
CAP Influence Density: 0.10

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ALERT: To fully understand this report you should first visit the topics suggested by the CAP Table of Contents.

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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 or plot does not excuse the sinful behavior of either the one who is drawing pleasure 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. 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 purely objective and is the heart of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie

"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." [Emphasis is mine] And "Viewing violence may lead to real life violence." I aplaud these associations for fortifying 1 Cor. 15:33. Read the rest of the story. From our five-year 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.

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


*MVP: Most Valuable Primate* (PG) -- and I have no idea why.

*MVP: Most Valuable Primate* earned a CAP score of 94 with an Influence Density of 0.10 which places it equivalent to a strong G in comparison to the CAP comparative baseline database of 39 movies circa 1995. There were two uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary, some childish (somewhat violent) on-ice antics, and a few items of impudence. I have no idea why this movie was rated PG. And it was. Even the poster said "PG."

For the benefit of the animal behavior class at Pueblo University in San Diego, Jack, the chimpanzee wakes form his middle-class bedroom, showers, blow dries his hair, makes his own breakfast and coffee. Then Professor Dr. Kendall (Lomas Study) gave Jack an arithmetic problem to solve before the class but excuses the call early for health reasons. Jack also helps the maintenance worker Darren (Russel Ferrier) with trash collection and mopping.

Dr. Kendall dies from a heart attack (non-graphic) and leaves the fate of Jack hanging. What to do with the chimp? Dr. Peabody (Oliver Muirhead) plans to sell Jack to another institution to recover revenue, but Darren and others are not in agreement with the selfish Dr. Peabody since the other institute is involved in medical research experimentation. Through a series of sly maneuvers, Darren manages to get Jack on a train to go back to his home, a wildlife refuge (I wish I had written down the name of it) where his parents still live. But to do that, Jack must listen for the proper train stop from the Conductor. But he sleeps through it and ends up in Canada. Now lost and without a friend, Jack meanders through the frozen tundra until he finds a tree house.

After making himself at home, Jack wanders some more until he comes across the delightful young lady of 11 or 12 Tara Westover (Jamie Renee Smith), a deaf girl, eating a banana while watching her brother practice skating in preparation for playing on the Nuggets hockey team - a Junior D League team. Tara is bothered by not having been invited, so she thought, to another girls party. Tara thinks she is undesirable because of being a newcomer AND for being deaf. But unbeknownst to Tara, her invitation fell to the floor by her school desk.

Tara's brother, Steve (Kevin Zegers) is a loving and supportive sibling, so much unlike the plethora of siblings in movies nowadays. While Steve practices, Tara lays her banana down -- and Jack takes it. Tara sees Jack but as loving as Steve is he doesn't believe her: "We're in Canada. There are no monkeys in Canada."

Tara and Steve decide to sneak Jack into their home. After a few enjoyable antics by Jack in the Westover home, Jack demonstrates he is able to speak sign language. The next time Tara and Steve go skating, Jack asks Steve to bring him a pair of skates -- yup, the simian can skate. Let's look at that for a moment. They are all in Canada. Steve skates for an ice hockey team. Jack can skate. Yes, the movie is predictable but delightful. Jack spends about a hour of the running time demonstrating "monkey" madness on the ice and wins a place on the team, then proceeds to take the team to the chimpionship.

There are a few things done in this movie you might not want you kids to do. At least twice the four letter word vocabulary was uttered, but at least muffled [Matt. 12:36-37]. God's name was used in vain but only once and without the four letter expletive [Lev. 19:12]. While essential to the plot, Tara and Steve sneaking the chimp into their house was deceitful and impudent [Ps. 32:2]. A lie was uttered to prevent discovery of Jack [Prov. 29:12]. Steve impolitely relieved himself with the bathroom door open, leaving an opportunity for Tara to see. And some cheating and somewhat violent antics on the ice gave justification for "let's talk" between parents and child viewers. But as always, it is not my call to make whether this movie is acceptable to you or your kids. We tell you what is there and give you some amazingly reliable and consistent numbers and Scripture basis for them as tools to help you make an informed decision. YOU decide whether a movie is okay or not for your kids.


  • 1 Cor. 15:33 (KJV) Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. (NIV) Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.
  • Matt. 12:36-37 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.
  • Lev. 19:12 And ye shall not swear by my name falsely, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.
  • Ps. 32:2 Blessed is the [person] whose sin the LORD does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit.
  • Prov. 29:12 If a ruler hearken to lies, all his servants are wicked.


    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.

    FINDINGS / SCORING: MVP: Most Valuable Primate (2000) CAP Thermometers

    NOTE: Multiple occurrences of each item described below may be likely, definitely when plural.

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W):
  • On-ice violence such as goalie knocked to unconsciousness and striking others with a hockey stick

    Impudence/Hate (I)(1):
  • two uses of the four letter word vocabulary, though muffled
  • adolescents sneaking a "pet" into the house and hiding it
  • lie to prevent discovery of the ape
  • teen urinating in bathroom with door open
  • cheating on the ice

    Sex/Homosexuality (S):
  • none noted

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • none noted

    Offense to God (O)(2):
  • a single use of God's name in vain but without the four letter expletive

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

  • (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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    Thomas A. Carder
    ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP)

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