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ChildCare Action Project:
Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP Ministry)
Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones (which includes at-home teens) through you, their parents and grandparents, in His name by His Word

(2003), PG-13

Analysis Date
CAP Final Score
CAP Influence Density
December 28, 2003
64 out of 100

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UPDATED December 31, 2003
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ALERT: To fully understand this report you should first visit the topics suggested by the CAP Site Map (Table of Contents). Further, 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.

(2003), PG-13 -- While a clever film, it is a terribly violent film.

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Paramount Pictures, DreamWorks SKG, Davis Entertainment, Lion Rock
Productions, Solomon/Hackett Productions
Distribution (US): DreamWorks Distribution LLC
Director(s): John Woo
Producer(s): Arthur Anderson, Terence Chang, John Davis, Michael Hackett, Stratton Leopold, Caroline Macaulay, David Solomon, John Woo
Written by: Philip K. Dick
Screenplay: Dean Georgaris
Cinematography/Camera: Jeffrey L. Kimball
Music: John Powell
Film Editing: Christopher Rouse, Kevin Stitt
Casting: Mindy Marin, Coreen Mayrs
Production Design: William Sandell
Art Direction: Sandy Cochrane
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6

In an effort to hold down costs, this and future Summary/Commentary section contents will be brief. The fullness of the Summary/Commentary section will return when donations increase greatly or when we find full funding.

In a story adapted from a short novel by Philip K. Dick, Ben Afflect plays a computer engineer named Michael Jennings who works for ALLCOM as a design pirate stealing the designs of other companies and improving on them. In one case, Jennings uses the design of another company to develop a computer system that displays data and imagery as three-dimensional holography rather than on a screen. The drawback of this sort of industrial espionage is that Jennings' memory of his involvement in the espionage is erased after each assignment so he has no idea what he is doing is immoral or illegal. Coming to suspect he is being used, in the final assignment -- a three year assignment for a paycheck of $90 million -- Jennings plants 19 clues that will allow him to adequately reconstruct what he has done.

It is a clever story with a respectable amount of ingenuity. If you have ever played the board game _Clue_ the plot is such that you may think of "Col. Mustard in the library with the candlestick." Even the cover art is cleverly designed to express the theme of the show without revealing it. While a clever film, it is a terribly violent film -- more than 58 examples of violence of one form or another per hour in this 112 minute movie. There are at least 50 instances of gunfire to kill with at least 14 additional episodes of assault but with little gore. [Prov. 10:6; Prov. 3:31-32] Though one of the two murders was rather graphic, no blood and guts splattered on the wall behind the murder victims were noted. While there were no uses of the most foul of the foul word nor any uses of God's name in vain with the four letter expletive noted, there were 8 uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary [Prov. 4:24] plus 6 uses of God's name in vain without the four letter expletive.[Deut. 5:11] A single episode of a man and a woman making out in bed for obvious intent plus a number of "lesser" issues of sexual immorality such as below-navel skin, open-face kissing, and excessive cleavage were also noted. [Hebr. 13:4; Eph. 5:4]

Note that with a final score of 64, this PG-1 3 is NOT an example of an R-13 movie. Its score fell squarely within the scoring cell boundaries of scores earned by PG-13 movies in the comparative baseline database. But note also that Paycheck earned a score of zero in Wanton Violence/Crime, thus revealing one of the great features of the CAP analysis model - to enable you to discover where in the scheme of our six investigation areas the concentration of assaults, if any, on morality and ethics lies. The listing in the Findings/Scoring section provides all that were noted.

SPECIAL NOTE: We will be reducing the volume of coverage in the Summary/Commentary section of our reports and the number of reports generated in an effort to reduce costs until full funding can be achieved. The Findings/Scoring section of each report, the heart of the analysis model, will NOT be reduced in any way.

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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.

  • Prov. 10:6 Blessings crown the head of the righteous, but violence overwhelms the mouth of the wicked.
  • Prov. 3:31-32 Do not envy a violent man or choose any of his ways, for the LORD detests a perverse man but takes the upright into his confidence.
  • Prov. 4:24 Put away perversity from your mouth; keep corrupt talk far from your lips.
  • Deut. 5:11 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain: for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain. [Vain is shav' {shawv}: emptiness, nothingness, vanity, such as an expletive. With or without the four letter expletive, the use of God's name in any way other than respect, reverence or thoughtful discussion is in vain. That includes the popular three syllable sentence with His name trailing it AND the misuse of Jesus' name.]
  • Hebr. 13:4 Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.
  • Eph. 5:4 Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.

    ***Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry***
  • Ps. 12:8 The wicked freely strut about [e.g., create progressively vile/offensive entertainment with impunity and no consequences and present it to younger and younger audiences every year] when what is vile is honored among men [when enough people continue to defend it, embrace it, pay for it, enjoy it, want it, submit to it. I call attention to Ps. 12:8 to warn of the creeping desensitizing power of "entertainment."]
  • 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 (KJV) Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. (NIV) Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.
  • Rom. 5:19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.
  • Jude 4 For certain men* whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change [warp, distort, falsely represent, situationally redefine, counterfeit, conditionally apply] 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.

    Paycheck (2003) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
  • technology espionage/piracy
  • invasive mind procedures, repeatedly
  • beating, repeatedly
  • assault, frequent
  • physical rudeness
  • illegal flight
  • recklessness in traffic, repeatedly, once narrowly avoiding being hit by a bus
  • gunfire to kill, frequent
  • firearm threat to face, repeatedly
  • action violence
  • planning to kill, repeatedly
  • traffic collision
  • pursuit to kill
  • assault on police officer
  • flashes of gunfire murder, repeatedly
  • imagery of nuclear devastation
  • fight to kill, repeatedly
  • massive explosions, once with human incineration
  • bloody injury
  • attempted choking murder
  • attempted hanging murder

    Impudence/Hate (I)
  • 8 uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary
  • lie, repeatedly

    Sexual Immorality (S)
  • suggestive eye movement
  • open face kissing
  • making out
  • excessive cleavage
  • images of prostitution
  • below-navel skin (for those who have been arguing with this, it means dress threatening to expose the pubic hair line)
  • man/woman making out in bed, her in underwear

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • booze to celebrate
  • smoking, repeatedly

    Offense to God (O)
  • 6 uses of God's name in vain but without the four letter expletive

    Murder/Suicide (M)
  • gunfire murder, twice, once graphic

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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 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.

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