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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 [PG-13*] (1hr 57min)
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(This section may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Paramount Pictures, Cruise/Wagner Productions, Vinyl Films
Distribution (US): Paramount Pictures
Director(s): Cameron Crowe
Producer(s): Cameron Crowe, Tom Cruise, Andy Fischer, Donald J. Lee Jr., Paula Wagner
Written by: Cameron Crowe
Cinematography/Camera: John Toll
Music: Nancy Wilson
Film Editing: Mark Livolsi, David Moritz
Casting: Gail Levin
Production Design: Clay A. Griffith
Art Direction: Beat Frutiger
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
Oregon-based "California" shoe designer, Drew Baylor (Orlando Bloom) is trying to manage double double trouble. I guess that would be quadruple trouble.
First, by failure of Drew's special shoe, the Spasmotica, the Mercury Shoe Company loses $972 million dollars. In a thespian display that would challenge Morgan Freeman or Harrison Ford's best, Alec Baldwin delivers a seething performance as Philip R. DeVoss, the boss of the Mercury Shoe Company, that would make any CEO shake in his boots. In a short presentation, Baldwin sets the purpose, direction and foundation of the entire film.
The effectiveness of DeVoss's (Baldwin's) delivery at imparting the depth and scope of the trouble Drew has caused with his failed Spasmotica caused Drew to seek relief through suicide. [Ex 20:13, 1 Cor. 15:33] He built a special stabbing machine from his exer-cycle. Each time the electric machine pumps a turn of the wheel a knife thrust forward into the space above the seat. Fortunately, his contraption fell apart, so he vowed to try again later -- after another portion of the quadruple trouble was settled.
After Drew's shoe design failure, amidst his suicidal failures comes news of the death of his father, Mitch (Tim Devitt) who was visiting his hometown Elizabethtown, Kentucky. All the hometown folk in Elizabethtown, who think Drew is from California rather than Oregon, want Drew to bury his father in the traditional way - in a grave by the Clarke Funeral Home. But mom, Hollie Baylor (Susan Sarandon), who stayed back in Oregon with Drew's sister, Heather (Judy Greer), wants Mitch brought to Oregon. Drew ends up having funeral services done in Elizabethtown then cremating his father then taking him back to Oregon.
On top of the disaster caused by his shoe, his failed attempt at suicide and his father's death, a pushy airline hostess, Claire Colburn (Kirsten Dunst) is trying to start a relationship with Drew. Her vies for Drew's affection started with his flight to Kentucky and persisted through his guided road trip back to Oregon by way of a number of clue stops along Route 66, including the Second Largest Farmer's Market in the World.
There was one portrayal of noteworthiness by the writers - a good example of the Ruckus, lunacy and licentiousness generated in a rock-n-roll frenzy. I didn't see any of the raised, waving lit cigarette lighters, though. Didn't need them. The place caught fire anyway.
Elizabethtown the city is about 45 miles south of Louisville (pronounced loo-ee-ville, not loo-iss-ville, but sometimes loo-ville), KY on the OH River which keeps IN detached from KY. And that is good, too. Hoosiers had been selling all their winter snow to Kentucky for landfill. And they kept coming back for more.
I have been to Elizabethtown as a field officer for the State of Indiana, for what reason I cannot remember, but I could not recognize any landmarks in the film. Some of the locations shown in Louisville off Interstate 65 were authentic, though. The foliage in the film was like the densely wooded area around Elizabethtown (and most other KY and southern IN towns) with ribbons of concrete slicing through the forests but I could not verify whether the film was shot on-location. I can say the "Welcome to Indiana" road sign in the film is authentic having seen Indiana "Welcome" signs probably 1000 times. Seeing the "Welcome to Indiana" signs in the film makes sense since one would likely take Interstate 64 in southern Indiana on the way from Oregon to Elizabethtown.
Elizabethtown was sometimes warm and touching but as with almost all modern entertainment, immoral behavior had to be added. The PG-13 Elizabethtown earned a CAP final score of 57 which placed it two points above the bottom of the scoring range earned by PG-13 films (55 to 67 out of 100) in the comparative baseline database, three points out of 100 above "R-13."
Some of the demonstrations of sin, in addition to the 11 uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary including two uses of the most foul of the foul words [Prov. 22:11, Col. 3:8] were a number of sexually immoral deeds such as displaying flashes of private skin [1John 2:16], portrayal of cohabitation for sex [Hebr. 13:4] and speaking vulgar innuendo let alone with kids within earshot [Luke 17:2, Matt 25:40].
Though it was not a violent film per se, the portrayal of staging, planning and attempting suicide to the middle school crowd is playing with fire since it has been proven that behaviors in and as entertainment can and do embolden the impressionable. [Ex 20:13] Likewise with drinking alcoholic beverages. Heavy presentations of drinking and drunkenness is as likely to embolden risk-taking whether they act on it or not. [Eph. 5:18]
Please inspect closely the listing of observations in the Findings/Scoring section before you decide whether this film is fit.
If needed to focus or fortify, applicable text is underlined or bracketed [ ] or bold. 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.
***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 objective heart of the CAP Analysis Model, independent of and insulated from the Summary/
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.
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