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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

X2: X-Men United (2003), PG-13
Analysis Date: May 1, 2003
Edited: May 6, 2003
CAP Score: 30 out of 100
CAP Influence Density: 1.71

MinMax: --73

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

X2: X-MEN UNITED (2003), PG-13 -- "Sometimes anger can help you survive." ... "So can faith."

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Ames Entertainment, XM2 Productions, 20th Century Fox, Donner/Schuler-Donner Productions, Marvel Entertainment
Distribution (US): 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
Director(s): Bryan Singer
Producer(s): Avi Arad, Tom DeSanto, Richard Donner, Ross Fanger, Kevin Feige, David Gorder, Stan Lee, Lauren Shuler Donner, Ralph Winter
Written by/Screenplay: Story: David Hayter, Zak Penn. Screenplay: Daniel P. Harris. Comic Book and Charaacters: John Byrne, Chris Claremont, Dave Cockrum, Michael Dougherty, Jack Kirby, Stan Lee, Bryan Singer, Len Wein
Cinematography/Camera: Newton Thomas Sigel
Music: John Ottman
Film Editing: Elliot Graham, John Ottman
Casting: Coreen Mayrs, Roger Mussenden
Production Design: Guy Dyas
Art Direction: Geoff Hubbard, Helen Jarvis
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6, Granbury, Texas

NOTE: May 6, 2003. I have edited the Summary/Commentary section of this analysis report to honor some of the comments of our visitors who have been supportive of this ministry plus a couple after-thoughts of my own. The changes do not alter the scoring or the scoring distribution whatsoever but provide more information about the movie and the characters and fortify applications of the Scriptures. -TC-

X2: X-Men United has some really good things to say. Too bad the good things said were embedded in and almost suffocated by tons of assaults on morality and decency, especially female nudity in this, yet another R-13. But many have misguided understandings of the Scriptures because of the Scriptures being embedded in and almost suffocated by tons of assaults on them through convenience "interpretations", situational redefinitions, counterfeitings and conditional applications of them to sound good, to make us feel better about our behaviors, to suit cultural tolerances and to quietly and relentlessly yet in vain eradicate that terrible "s" word ...


Our inability to grasp the true meaning of the Truth in the Bible is more likely a matter of our perception of what is said. In other words, there is nothing unclear about what God tells us. But since some of His statements do not fit some of our expectations we attempt to change His Word suit our expectations, which confounds our perception of the Truth.

In the subject line of this report we quote from X2: X-Men United. Even with all the assaults on morality and decency in the movie, I was especially moved by one character in particular. I want to put the spotlight on him up front. The character is Kurt Wagner, a.k.a. Nightcrawler (Alan Cumming). Even after being cast out of his family from birth because of his hiddeousness, Nightcrawler portrays a strong Christian faith in God. Openly. Refreshingly. Alan Cumming speaks the Lord's Prayer (remember, the Lord's Prayer is from Jesus Himself) and makes several references to the power of faith. For example, when Nightcrawler speaks to Storm (Hale Berry) about so much anger in her she says to him "Sometimes anger can help you survive." Nightcrawler replies "So can faith." Also, the Nightcrawler performances suggested very well that even the ugliest of appearances can be beautiful if the heart is pure. By God's standards. Not ours. Well done, 20th Century Fox and Bryan Singer. Well done for the courage to keep the politically incorrect character of the original Nightcrawler. I am impressed.

Sidebar Note: That Alan Cumming played the part of a believer also says something else. Though nothing in Cumming's performances in X2: X-Men United was openly suggestive of homosexuality (he even commented on Storm's beauty), Cumming is reported as being openly gay (not to mention McKellen is also reported as being gay). It may be that Cumming's performances were snicker fuel since God's Word admonishes us that the practice of homosexuality is sinful [Rom. 1:16 - 32; 1Cor. 6:9-10]. But something that can be drawn from the performance, however long a stretch it might seem, was that being gay will not prevent Salvation through the precious Blood of Jesus IF the practitioner chooses to believe Jesus is Lord and resurrected Savior. In accordance with God's Word practicing homosexual behaviors is sinful as are a plethora of other behaviors. Even some my own behaviors and thoughts are sinful though practicing homosexuality is not one of them. But none of our sins will keep us from becoming Saved. NONE! Nor will our good deeds get Salvation for us. All we have to do is accept and admit we are sinners and ask His forgiveness believing Jesus is Lord and resurrected Savior and invite Him into our hearts. And as said by the Gospel hymn, "Just as I Am", we do NOT have to be "clean" to ask. Jesus will take care of that. The practitioner of homosexuality is as precious to Jesus as any straight man or woman. It is some of our behaviors He hates, even some of my own. God does NOT hate the sinner. He hates the sin [Prov. 6:16 - 19] and what sin does to the sinner. Know that it is N-E-V-E-R to late to ask.

I will not argue the nudity of Mystique. If it is okay for her to wear only blue paint and tiny "glued-on" scale prosthetics to maximize exposing her gender-specific anatomy (though much of it amplified through fabrication), wouldn't it be okay for men to be seen with only paint and tiny glued-on scales over their gender-specifics? Put another way, what do you think the police would do if a woman walked into an elementary school classroom wearing only the identical covering Rebecca Romijn-Stamos wore? Would it be okay to go into a church or courtroom with only such a covering? How about a public beach (Mystique's "outfit" does not conceal as much as the skimpiest of bathing suits)? Well? These are all public places just like the theater. And isn't such a display only freedom of expression? Such display is vulgar tease, pushing the threshold of acceptability yet further below wholesome to younger and younger kids every year. Nothing more. Nothing less. By the way, I was right about Mystique getting more screen time this time. A lot more. Most of it nude. [Ps. 12:8] It has been reported to me that the true Mystique was a red-haired woman in a white dress. If true, doesn't that sort of point to where the filmmakers were going with Mystique in this movie for teens, for the age stratum least capable of managing the fires of sexual desires? Even if it is not true, the direction is the same.

Nightcrawler is forced by dastardly scientist Colonel William Stryker (Brian Cox) to attempt to kill US President McKenna (Cotter Smith) in an effort to convince the President he must approve registration and control of mutants. Senator Robert Kelly (Bruce Davison), a staunch supporter of mutant registration/control from X-Men turned into a mutant by Erik Lehnsherr a.k.a. Magneto (Ian McKellen), who is reported to me to be Mystique shape-shifted since Kelly was killed in X-Men, is now fighting Col. Stryker in his efforts to enact legislation to force registration/control of mutants. Elsewhere it is said that mutants comprise about 3% of the population. I wonder if there is design to using a figure of 3% since two of the quintessential characters are Ian McKellen and Allan Cumming, and since the tagline is "The time has come for those who are different to stand united " Oh! Forgive me! SIR Ian McKellen. (A private matter to address a request of a small grouping of our less-than-appreciative British visitors.)

United together? Were not the X-Men already united? Well, yes they were. But in this longer and more action-oriented installment in the X-Men phenomenon, the X-Men actually join forces with Magneto and his band of merry marauders (Mystique anyway). Together Dr. Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and Magneto find ways to combine their skills and talents to defeat Col. Stryker, if only for a short time, while maintaining an adversarial relationship between the two factions.

X2: X-Men United entered the ring of "summer" blockbuster contenders with fists a-flying and made its potentially dynamic contribution. We'll see if it can hold its title with Dr. David Banner lurking just around the corner. We'd best not make Dr. Banner mad 'cause we wouldn't like him when he's mad. Ah! But before Dr. Banner comes Neo ... again.

To summarize the three and a half log pages of findings itemized in the Findings/Scoring section, note that there is a l-o-t of female nudity (Mystique) -- a lot more nudity than the first X-Men. [**] Rogue (Anna Paquin) is seen willingly starting to remove her clothes (action completed off screen) in front of Iceman (Shawn Ashmore) in a bedroom. And after Iceman does a dutiful look-away, we see him turn his face back toward her and noticeably enjoy watching Rogue change her clothes [Prov. 6:25, Matt. 5:28]. Even the first time we see Rogue (in X-Men) she is, although clothed, in her bedroom on her bed with a teenage boy. Mystique forms a caucasian bar babe and exposes about 98.9% of her below-the-waist skin to a bar customer (and the viewer) then sexually attacks him by giving his tongue a tongue bath then unzipping his pants in a bathroom stall. [Eph. 5:5; 1Cor. 7:2] There is quite a bit of additional issues of sexual immorality in X2: X-Men United but the biggest point loss was due to violence. This is a very violent movie. Sometimes viciously. Sometimes brutally. [Prov. 16:29] Deathstrike (Kelly Hu) is seen repeatedly thrusting her blades into Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) and apparently enjoying it. And Wolverine slashes his share of people, too. There are many blade killings in this movie, some defensive and some murder but fortunately, the filmmakers avoided the gore. Wolverine is also shot in the forehead by a police officer's 9mm handgun, but again with no gore. And evolution figures prominently in the movie [Gen. 2:1 - 2].

Please read the rather lengthy listing of findings in the Findings/Scoring section before you decide whether to take your family to see X2: X-Men United. And please do not use the first X-Men as a measure of this one. X-Men earned a CAP final score of 56 out of 100, two points above the range of scores earned by R-rated movies (54 and below out of 100) in the comparative baseline database. X2: X-Men United earned a final score of 30.

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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.

  • Rom. 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (17) For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. (18) For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; (19) Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath showed it unto them. (20) For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: (21) Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. (22) Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, (23) And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. (24) Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: (25) Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. (26) For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: (27) And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet. (28) And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; (29) Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, (30) Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, (31) Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: (32) Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death [spiritual death, .i.e., eternity in Hell, not mortal death], not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
  • 1Cor. 6:9-10 Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
  • Prov. 6:16 - 19 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren. [Note that God says He hates these six THINGS, not the doers of them. The point is that God hates sin.]
    ** "Nakedness" (display of nudity) is spoken of as dark, restricted, undesirable, shameful, etc. 47 times in the KJV from Genesis to Revelation.
  • Prov. 6:25 Lust not after her beauty in thine heart; neither let her take thee with her eyelids.
  • Matt. 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
  • Eph. 5:5 For of this you can be sure: No [unforgiven] immoral, impure or greedy person -such a man is an idolater -has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
  • 1Cor. 7:2 But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband.
  • Prov. 16:29 A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good.
  • Gen. 2:1 - 2 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.

    ***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 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]. [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.
  • 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.


    X2: X-Men United (YEAR) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
  • assault on presidential security personnel
  • action violence, repeatedly, some vicious
  • attempted knife murder
  • brutality
  • grotesqueness
  • blade killings, repeatedly, defensive, cold but no gore
  • knife attack
  • gunfire shot to the forehead, impact trauma visible but no gore
  • assault with fire to kill, repeatedly
  • lust for power, gratification with brutal victory
  • imprisonment of children as guinea pigs for experimentation
  • firearm threats, repeatedly
  • firearm threat to the head
  • physical assaults of various kinds
  • gunfire to kill
  • flashes of gore
  • order to kill, repeatedly
  • blade fighting with visible impalements, repeatedly, some very cold and vicious but no gore
  • attempted murder by blade, repeatedly
  • threat with blades
  • assault with bondage by chain
  • bizarre, unnatural imagery
  • self-inflicted scaring

    Impudence/Hate (I)
  • ten uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary, twice by adolescents
  • teen rivalry arrogance, twice
  • lies to parents
  • lies to police
  • "You always do as you're told?"
  • defection to evil

    Sex/Homosexuality (S)
  • adulterous activities <
  • anatomical reference insult
  • vulgar talk
  • full female nudity, repeatedly, frequent
  • gamming to entice
  • woman unzipping man's pants
  • woman sexually attacking a man to entice
  • teen girl undressing with a teen boy watching in the same room
  • woman on man
  • vulgar gesture
  • flash full male nudity

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • smoking, repeatedly
  • forced drugging, repeatedly
  • drinking, repeatedly
  • forced drugging of children, multiple
  • bar
  • booze

    Offense to God (O)
  • nine uses of God's name in vain but none with the four letter expletive
  • promotion of evolution, repeatedly
  • telepathy
  • premonition
  • levitation, repeatedly
  • miraculous healing, repeatedly
  • shape-shifting, repeatedly
  • mind control, repeatedly
  • nightmarish imagery
  • teleportation, repeatedly
  • power to part the waters

    Murder/Suicide (M)
  • murder by leeching blood through skin
  • murder by projectile, twice
  • multiple murder by explosion
  • sacrificial suicide to save others

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    NOTE: While the Summary/Commentary section of these reports is precisely that -- a summary in commentary format which can be and sometimes is subjective, the actual CAP Analysis Model (the Findings/Scoring section) makes no scoring allowances for trumped-up "messages" to excuse, for manufacture of justification for, or camouflaging of ignominious content or aberrant behavior or imagery with "redeeming" programming. Disguising sinful behavior in a theme/plot does not excuse the sinful behavior of either the one who is drawing pleasure or example of behavior or thought from the sinful display or of the practitioners demonstrating the sinful behavior. We make no attempt to quantify the "artistic" or "entertainment" value of a movie -- whether a movie has any positive value or "entertainment" value is up to mom/dad. The CAP analysis model is the only known set of tools available to parents and grandparents which give *them* the control they need, bypassing the opinion-based assessment of movies by others and defeating the deceit of those who would say anything to convince their parents otherwise. The model is completely objective to His Word. Our investigation standards are founded in the teachings and expectations of Jesus Christ. If a sinful behavior is portrayed, it is called sinful whether Hollywood tries to make it otherwise. That the sinful behavior is "justified" by some manufactured conditions does not soften nor erase the price of sin. Whether there is application of fantasy "justification" or "redemption" is up to mom/dad.

    "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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