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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones through you in His name by His Word
(2004), PG-13 [R-13*]
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(This section may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
(2004), PG-13 [R-13*] ... with endearing qualities. But it is R-13.
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): DreamWorks SKG, Tall Trees Productions, LivePlanet
Distribution (US): DreamWorks Distribution LLC
Director(s): Mike Mitchell
Producer(s): Betty Thomas, Jenno Topping, Patricia Whitcher
Story: Deborah Kaplan, Harry Elfont
Screenplay: Deborah Kaplan, Harry Elfont, Jeffrey Ventimilia, Joshua Sternin
Cinematography/Camera: Peter Lyons Collister, Tom Priestley Jr.
Music: Randy Edelman
Film Editing: Craig McKay, Dana E. Glauberman
Production Design: Caroline Hanania
Art Direction: Sue Chan
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
Chicago advertising executive Drew Latham (Ben Affleck), who felt he could sell whale steaks to Greenpeace, found himself doomed to another Christmas alone after his very vain and selfish girlfriend, Missy Vangilder (Jennifer Morrison) dumped him because he wanted to go on a cohabitative trip with her instead of spend Christmas with family. It is the family season after all. Missy knew nothing of Drew's family, maybe as a protective measure by Drew. His father left him when he was four and his mother, who died when Drew was in college, was a coffee house waitress. Again Hollywood portrays the waitress as "low-life."
To set the mood, the writers presented several episodes of sadness and desperation to describe the Christmas season Drew was feeling. One of the episodes was of a grandmother sticking her head in the oven to commit suicide. Wonderful show it is, dontcha know. And it doesn't get much better except in a few ways.
After having exhausted his list of contacts and friends as potential Christmas mates, Drew ran into Missy's psychologist at the airport on his way with family to meet with more family. After the doctor finally convinced Drew he could not spend Christmas with him and his family, the doctor told drew to write down all his grievances against his family, take the list to a childhood memory location and burn the list while saying "I forgive you." Drew did exactly that.
Arriving with his list at his boyhood house in Lincoln Wood, Illinois, Drew burned the list just in front of the front door. Tom Valco (the unmistakable James Gandolfini), the home owner, perceived Drew's pyro act as an attempt at vandalism and knocked him out with a snow shovel.
After regaining consciousness after being drug inside the house, Drew laid his plans on the Valco family: Tom, Christine (Catherine O'Hara, acting the same as in) and, of course, sex-crazed teenage son Bryan (Josh Zuckerman). Drew's plans were to spend the Christmas holiday with them if they pretended to be his family. A "rent-a-family" fee of $250,000 was what convinced the Valco's to accept Drew's offer.
From there, all stops are pulled. In fear of breech of contract, the Valco family played along with Drew's desperation for company during Christmas. But from here it is difficult to give you a plot summary since the projectionists got two of the reels out of order for this screening. Though the order may not have been correct, it doesn't matter regarding the content of each reel.
In several ways, this comedy romance sparkles and is warm, of even and comfortable flow with endearing qualities. But it is R-13.
At what appeared to be near the end of the show the writers presented Drew gazing out his high rise apartment window at other tenants, witnessing several families having joyous cheer and yule tidings. One of the scenes of marriage warmth was of an apron-clad, bowl-stirring spouse planting a light kiss one the cheek of his husband. Read it again if it is confusing.
In a couple other scenes, the mother is portrayed as being the subject of a porn shoot ... and the teen son sees the pictures on the Internet. Fortunately, we do not see any gender-specific parts. While Sexual Immorality (I) found programming to earn one of the lowest of the six investigation area (W, I, S, D, O, M) scores [Eph. 5:5], there is (atypically) no intercourse in this PG-13 and no one gets in bed with anyone else. However, there is enough profanity (without the most foul of the foul words) in this film to earn a score of one out of 100 in Impudence/Hate. [Prov. 22:11] There is also enough use of God's name in vain but without the four letter expletive to erase nearly all of the starting 100 points in Offense to God (O). [Deut. 5:11] This film earned a final CAP score of 50 which places it four points into the scoring range earned by R-rated movies (54 and below out of 100) in the comparative baseline database, making it equivalent to a "lite" R but a R nonetheless.
The listing in the Findings/Scoring section will reveal all that was noted.
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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)
|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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