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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones through you in His name by His Word
(2004), PG [G*]
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(This section may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): 20th Century Fox, Culver Studios, Davis Entertainment
Distribution (US): 20th Century Fox Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp.
Director(s): Joel Zwick
Producer(s): John Bush, Bill Cosby, Camille O. Cosby, John Davis, Alexander H. Gayner, Vanessa Morrison, Jeffrey Stott
Written by: Dr. William H. Cosby, Charles Kipps
Cinematography/Camera: Paul Elliott
Music: Richard Gibbs, Kevin Kliesch
Casting: Chemin Sylvia Bernard, Monica Swann
Production Design: Nina Ruscio
Art Direction: Scott Meehan
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
The North Philly Cosby friends are back: Mushmouth (Jermaine Williams); Dumb Donald (Marques Houston); Russell (Jeremy Suarez); Bucky (Alphonso McAuley); Weird Harold (Aaron Frazier); Rudy (Shedrack Anderson III). And, of course, Fat Albert Robertson (Kenan Thompson). Mudfoot and Devery were not seen.
Young loner teen Doris (Kyla Pratt) was in pain from rejection by her Ardsley High School classmates. A tear of pain fell from Doris' eye onto the TV remote as she was watching Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids. Doris' "real life" tear opened some sort of portal to the TV cartoon world. Hearing Doris' cries, Fat Albert left the cartoon world through the portal made by Doris' tear. Soon to follow were the rest of the Cosby gang except Bucky.
Much of the comedy came in the form of introducing cartoon characters of the 60s to Hollywood's version of the real life of today's world. Pop-top soda cans were their first novelty -- they have their own can openers. Laptop computers were alien. A multistory shopping mall was an indoor city. One instance which I appreciated especially was when Mushmouth was listening to a modern song with headphones and enjoying the music but quickly showed astonishment and ripped the headphones off his head at what was being said in the song. This was a perfect example of what I have been telling thousands for years: that we have become so drugged by the narcotics of extremes that what once was morally unacceptable has become morally invisible.
As Fat Albert did his best to guide Doris, he fell for Doris' foster sister, Lauri (Dania Ramirez). Lauri was quite compatible with the cool set at school but she was atypical of they who are so stationed socially in Hollywood high schools -- she was nice. And she fell for Albert as well. This complicated matters because unless Albert and the rest of the Cosby Kids returned to cartoon land, they would be reduced to a pile of celluloid dust.
I am not going to spoil any more of the plot or story since this analysis is being posted before the show opens tomorrow, Christmas day 2004.
This film was rated PG for "momentary language." What that means I have no idea because I found no instances of any foul language of any kind in the cut I saw. Mushmouth mumbled some monosyllabic mush words that were treated by another characters naughty language but what Mushmouth said was not distinguishable and therefore I cannot claim observation of any foul words. It is apparently common practice for there to be multiple cuts of a film playing at the same time throughout the country and some of those cuts may have had potty mouth in them, but not in the cut I saw.
In spite of the PG rating, at a CAP final score of 92 Fat Albert contained programming equivalent to G rated films in the comparative baseline database. And if there had been but one less point lost in each of Sexual Immorality and Offense to God, Fat Albert would have earned a green instead of yellow CAPCon alert light.
Among the matters which stole just a touch of the wholesomeness from this delightful yet cautious fun frolic included a couple live public school kids wearing clothing to maximize the female form and/or skin exposure. Maybe that is the way some school kids dress nowadays but is that supposed to excuse showing more and more skin each year? [1Cor. 6:18]
God's name was used once without the four letter expletive by a school age child [Luke 17:2]. That it was used only once in the entire 88 minutes of the film, that so many freely use God's name in vain in the three-syllable sentence with His name trailing it and that so many use it so frequently does not excuse the sin of using His name in vain ... even once. Further, the first time of a sin does not excuse the second nor does the second excuse the third ... nor the third the thousandth. Nor does the thousandth excuse the first, or the second or the third ... [Deut. 5:11] I feel a sermon coming on with that. But I'll keep it to myself. For now.
Lying is most unacceptable to our Lord with dire consequences to the unforgiven liar. This film portrayed at least one lie. [Rev. 21:8]
Regarding sexual immorality, Fat Albert was about as "lite" as lite can be, but it was there. A young teen girl (Lauri) was seen in her underwear as she prepared for bed. The script was written to include attention to the naked human posterior by having one of the characters lose the backside of his pants (unseen).
While there were no instances noted whatsoever of the use or presence of alcoholic beverages, tobacco or illegal drugs, one of the characters used "fool" in name-calling of others. [Matt. 5:22] And God speaks many times in both the Old Testament and the New Testament of the darkness of unholy spirituality. This film presents a touch of spiritism.
Granted, this is all in a fantasy movie of light-hearted shenanigans, but an influence does not have to be real to influence.
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 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.
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