ChildCare Action Project (CAP): Christian Analysis of American Culture


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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
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Dungeons & Dragons (2000), (PG-13)
CAP Score: 53
CAP Influence Density: 1.27

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ALERT: To fully understand this report you should first visit the topics suggested by the CAP Table of Contents.

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NOTE: The CAP Analysis Model makes no scoring allowances for trumped-up "messages" to excuse or for manufacturing of justification for aberrant behavior or imagery, or for camouflaging such ignominy with "redeeming" programming. Disguising sinful behavior in a theme plot does not excuse the sinful behavior of either the one who is drawing pleasure from the sinful display or the practitioners demonstrating the sinful behavior. This is NOT a movie review service. It is a movie analysis service to parents and grandparents to tell them the truth about movies using the Truth. 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 purely objective and is the heart of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie

"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." [Emphasis is mine] And "Viewing violence may lead to real life violence." I aplaud these associations for fortifying 1 Cor. 15:33. Read the rest of the story. From our five-year 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.

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


DUNGEONS & DRAGONS (PG-13) -- it is not the board game turned movie, it is just gothic eye candy.

There is little to say about Dungeons & Dragons other than it is not the board game, it is just gothic eye candy for the adolescent and flash to lure those familiar with the D&D game. Empress Savina (Thora Birch - American Beauty) of the kingdom of Izmer is in danger of being usurped by the evil Profion (Jeremy Irons) who uses black magic [Rev. 21:8; Rev. 22:14-15] to gain advantage over her. He intends to maintain rule by the Mages while Savina is trying to restore balance by giving equality to the common people. At Profion's beck and call is Damodar (Bruce Payne), a bald stooge of Profion's cursed by him with snakelike parasites in his head that come out of his ears and latch onto a victim's ears to slurp up the knowledge and memory of the victim. On a positive note, unlike her presence in American Beauty Birch is responsibly dressed in this flick, and rather opulent and attractive. And she keeps her clothes on this time [Rom. 13:13]. In fact, everyone does. But elfin Norda (Kristen Wilson) wears a breastplate which is quite detailed in truth to its name, leaving nothing to the imagination [1John 2:16].

Also in the fray are commoners Ridley (Justin Whalin) and Snails (Marlon Wayans), who are common thieves [1Cor. 6:9-10] best described as Laurel and Hardy, but there is no laughter or humor in what God says is in store for [unforgiven] thieves. As Ridley and Snails try to rob a magic school, they meet up with a Mage named Marina (Zoe McLellan), who I think was the daughter of a master alchemist (who is killed by Damodar) and possessor of great knowledge of magic. In a bar spending the spoils of their robbery, Ridley and Snails (and reluctantly, Marina) meet up with dwarf Elwood (Lee Arenberg) and begin a trek to find the Dragon's Eye which, when placed in Savina's scepter, gives the bearer power over the dragons. And there were a lot of dragons. Along the way, Norda becomes entangled with the foursome. All in all Dungeons & Dragons might be an okay high school play after a little cleaning, but definitely not worth the $6.50 admission. New Line Cinema has done better -- a lot better.

As yet another "R-13" Dungeons & Dragons presented one of the most pronounced saw-tooth patterns in the CAP Thermometers I have seen. Contributory to this unusual pattern was a lot of, as the MPAA put it, "fantasy action violence." Feel free to drop the "fantasy action." Murder with lust for it [Gal. 5:21], blade threats, controls with weapons, human incineration, and stabbings were just a few of the issues of violence [Jonah 3:8]. The Wanton Violence/Crime investigation area score was zero [Hab. 2:9; Ps. 7:9]. One of the violent scenes was of Damodar driving and twisting slowly a sword downward into Ridley's collar bone cavity. And, to be expected, the Offense to God score was also zero with a ton of portrayals of black magic to manipulate, control, and harm, in one case to resurrect [Acts 13:10]. Regarding the breastplate worn by Kristen Wilson, it is one thing to wear protective armor, but to sculpt it to exactly duplicate the female anatomy is another thing entirely. Due to the level of detail on it, I will not believe it was for any purpose but to include "sex" in the program without using live models. And, no, it is not at all the same as a male wearing a breastplate sculpted to make him look as if he had only 1% body fat.


  • 1 Cor. 15:33 (KJV) Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. (NIV) Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.
  • Rev. 21:8 But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars -their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.
  • Rev. 22:14-15 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without [outside] are dogs, and sorcerers [those who practice magic arts], and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie [all liars].
  • Rom. 13:13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy.
  • 1John 2:16 For everything in the world -the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does -comes not from the Father but from the world.
  • 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.
  • Gal. 5:21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
  • Jonah 3:8 But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth. Let everyone call urgently on God. Let them give up their evil ways and their violence.
  • Hab. 2:9 Woe to him who builds his realm by unjust gain to set his nest on high, to escape the clutches of ruin!
  • Ps. 7:9 O righteous God, who searches minds and hearts, bring to an end the violence of the wicked and make the righteous secure.
  • Acts 13:10 You [Elymas, the sorcerer; practitioner of the magic arts] are a child of the devil and an enemy of everything that is right! You are full of all kinds of deceit and trickery. Will you never stop perverting the right ways of the Lord?


    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.

    FINDINGS / SCORING: Dungeons & Dragons (2000) CAP Thermometers

    NOTE: Multiple occurrences of each item described below may be likely, definitely when plural.

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W):
  • human incineration
  • river of blood
  • dragon attacks, some quite graphic and extended
  • planning robbery
  • breaking and entering for robbery
  • thefts
  • snakelike parasite crawling under skin and coming out ears, repeatedly
  • threats, some with weapons
  • physical attacks
  • endangerment and perils, impending doom
  • much fighting
  • abduction by force
  • control with weapons
  • extreme beasts
  • near death in "quicksand"
  • sword fights, some among many
  • brutal beating
  • stabbings
  • sadism with injury (stabbing with sword with twisting of blade with lust for doing it)
  • dead body
  • an order to kill many
  • long battle sequence
  • death by sword
  • consumption of a human by a dragon

    Impudence/Hate (I)(1):
  • five uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary
  • animated argument
  • brutalizing a woman hostage
  • lies

    Sex/Homosexuality (S):
  • women as toys
  • inappropriate touch
  • many, many images of a form fitting breastplate - female
  • innuendo
  • open mouth kissing

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • drinking

    Offense to God (O)(2):
  • monologue of magic to control
  • many, many instances of black magic
  • pretense of extreme age (implication of immortality)
  • clairvoyance
  • magic healing
  • portrayal of magic as the "Force" (ref: Star Wars(tm)) giving balance to all things
  • decayed human remains talking and giving instructions

    Murder/Suicide (M)(3):
  • murder by magic
  • murder by arrows
  • murder by beating

  • (1) As noted in CAP Special Report-001, "Investigation Area and Scoring Trend," of the six CAP Investigation Areas, Impudence/Hate was the strongest presence in all four movie classifications. It has a strong revelation about the entertainment media.

    (2) The use of the three/four letter word vocabulary without God's name in vain is incorporated into the Impudence/Hate Investigation Area. The use of God's name with or without the four letter expletive is incorporated into the Offense to God Investigation Area. There is no duplication.

    (3) Only portrayal of successful murder or suicide are incorporated into Murder/Suicide. Portrayal of attempts to commit murder or suicide and deaths by police action or war are incorporated into Wanton Violence/Crime.

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