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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 [R-13*] (1hr 52min)
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(This section may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): New Regency Pictures, Summit Entertainment, Weed Road Pictures, Regency Enterprises
Distribution (US): Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp.
Director(s): Doug Liman
Producer(s): Erik Feig, Lucas Foster, Akiva Goldsman, Simon Kinberg, Eric McLeod, Arnon Milchan, Patrick Wachsberger, Kim H. Winther
Written by: Simon Kinberg
Cinematography/Camera: Bojan Bazelli
Music: John Powell
Film Editing: Michael Tronick
Casting: Joseph Middleton, Michelle Morris
Production Design: Jeff Mann
Art Direction: Keith Neely
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
I understand a "steamy sex scene" between Pitt and Jolie was edited out of Mr. and Mrs. Smith to get a PG-13 rating instead of the initial R rating. Well, the noble editing of that scene failed. Miserably. Not enough was cut. With a final score of 22 out of 100 Mr. and Mrs. Smith still fell squarely in the range of scores earned by R-rated movies (54 and below out of 100) in the comparative baseline database. Mr. and Mrs. Smith is another R-13. Hardcore R-13 at that. And it is the perfect example of the CAP Rule of 1000.
Even the influence density (ID) figure confirms the "R-ness" of this film. R-rated films in the comparative baseline database earned influence density figures from 0.89 to 2.04 (the higher the figure the more dense the assaults on decency and morality). Mr. and Mrs. Smith earned an influence density figure of 2.07. So much for "PG-13." It's a sign of the times. [Luke 17:1, Ps. 12:8, Matt 18:7]
The film opens with Jane (Angelina Jolie) and John Smith (Brad Pitt) attending a marriage counseling session after five or six years of marriage. In that session the caliber of the film is set when asked about their sex life John says he doesn't understand the question. The inevitable question about how the two met gave us the basis for the film.
Five or six years ago John and Jane, both hired killers, were working independently on assignments in Bogota, Columbia. In an odd situation once John claimed that Jane, whom he had never met, was his wife the two were released from the clutches of the Bogotanian military authorities. After spending a night together, they became man and wife. Neither knew the other was a killer for hire ... an assassin.
Now, five or six years later, the two are still married. Neither yet knew that the other is a killer for hire. Then one day they were each assigned the same target. Mrs. Smith was the first to discover the real identity of her husband. But it wasn't long before Mr. Smith came to know the truth about his wife's nine-to-five job.
The film spends a good deal of time between the marital warfare episodes building the story of a man and wife keeping their "jobs" secret from the other. During this period of clandestine affairs, John killed four men at a poker game and Jane killed one as she straddled her towel-clad prey while she was dressed in S&M attire, whip and all.
The two agencies for which the pair worked were separate agencies and knew no more of the other agency than did John know about Jane's work or Jane of John's. Thus, it was of no surprise that both Jane and John were assigned the same target. Now that is a non-formulaic development.
As Jane and John went about their separate tasks of setting up to kill their prey, their separate circles of influence eventually collided. The sparks really flew as the two tried to kill each other before the other killed the prey they were both trying to kill.
Soon, they each discovered the "true identity" of the other one who was trying to kill the target they were both trying to kill. Now the true colors of their marriage became known. But not to worry. About the marriage, that is. It came to pass that both Jane and John would be killed if they did not succeed in killing their target within 48 hours. Now the togetherness grew.
Thus is a quite unusual plot with not many repeat features to fuel boredom. But one of the repeat features of their tasks mentioned 13 times in the six paragraphs leading to this one is "kill." The modern hero and heroine were murderers! [Deut. 5:17]
I have gotten the impression that such political murdering for hire happens, but only because Hollywood and other mainstream information media say so. I have no first-hand experience with such activity. And I doubt that one in one hundred thousand of you have any either. Face it. Our view and knowledge of the world about us outside the front door is largely at the mercy of the communication media which includes the entertainment industry.
Though that which the entertainment industry imparts to us in and as entertainment is, to a great deal, fantasy, it still leaves an impression. For example, did seeing the young cartoon buck's mother get shot make you at least a little misty-eyed? How could you let it do that! It was total fantasy! Did it make you even a little sad when Travis had to shoot Old Yeller? It, too, was raw fantasy, so how could you possibly become absorbed enough into it to become sad and a fake dog's death? And such "knowledge" imparted to us in and as entertainment is getting uglier and uglier as the years pass by. [Ps. 12:8] THAT is what we are fighting. Indeed, we have become so drugged by the narcotics of extremes that what once was morally unacceptable in and as entertainment has become morally invisible.
Do you think our understanding and knowledge of the world being shaped by the communication media is not real? Then consider Rwanda. Have you ever been to Rwanda and seen for yourself the destitution there or do you just accept what the media tell you about Rwanda: that what they tell you is the truth?
Even leftist history revisionists know that our concept of most things outside the home is largely shaped by information we are fed by whatever vehicle or instrument. That is why they are trying to edit "Christian" out of all history sources.
Shaping of our view and understanding of the real world by what we are "fed" through entertainment is only a little different. You should read some of the email we receive from youth who almost swear no one could possibly survive in social life if it were not for films, mostly R and "R-13" films.
The most severe loss of points due to content of Mr. and Mrs. Smith was due to violence. [Prov. 13:2, Prov. 3:31-32] It is an action feature very dependent on violence for fill of much of its 112 minutes of screen time. Foul language, though not as severe as cussfest films, contained enough uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary to equal the magnitude of cussing in many R-rated films. [Eph. 4:29, Eph. 5:4, 2 Tim. 2:16, Matt. 12:36]
Sexual immorality was also enough to be equal to many R-rated films, not so much in the severity of individual demonstrations of sexually immoral matters but in the sheer number of them (see the CAP Rule of 1000). [Prov. 30:20, 1John 2:16, 1Ths. 4:3 - 5]
Likewise R-equivalent was the use of God's name in vain, also not in the severity of individual uses but that the sheer number of uses was equal to the number and severity of them used in many R-rated films. [Deut 5:11} And likewise R-equivalent was the number murders (which does not include defensive killing, warfare or police action).
Indeed, every one of the six CAP investigation areas (W, I, S, D, O and M) found enough assaults on wholesome morality and ethics to be equivalent to many R-rated films. In other words, each of the six CAP investigation areas revealed programming which earned scores less than 54 out of 100.
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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.
ChildCare Action Project (CAP): Christian Analysis of American Culture
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