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Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP Ministry)
Entertainment Media Analysis Report
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|ALERT: To fully understand this report you should first visit the topics suggested by the CAP Site Map (Table of Contents). Further, 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 completely objective to His Word and is the heart of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie.
(203), PG -- Another hard pill to swallow...
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Casual Friday Productions, Gunn Films
Distribution (US): Buena Vista Pictures
Director(s): Mark S. Waters
Producer(s): Andrew Gunn, Mario Iscovich, Ann Marie Sanderlin
Written by/Screenplay: Novel: Mary Rodgers. Scrennplay: Heather Hach, Leslie Dixon
Cinematography/Camera: Oliver Wood
Music: Rolfe Kent, Simple Plan ("So Happy Together")
Film Editing: Bruce Green
Casting: Marci Liroff
Production Design: Cary White
Art Direction: Maria L. Baker
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
I am sorry it has taken nearly four full days to get this to you. When we can find enough funding to not have to rely on the unpredictable availability of free support services, we will be able to get analyses to you much sooner, some to several of them even before the movies are released to the public.
This analysis of "tweenage" Freaky Friday is going to be a hard pill to swallow, especially since everyone seems to be conditioned to accept that PG movies are acceptable. But I don't determine the scoring. The content determines the scoring ... and the extent of moral and ethical assaults. Freaky Friday is a "13-PG", meaning it earned a CAP final score in the range earned by PG-13 movies (67 to 55 out of 100) of the comparative baseline database.
Damaging content included young Harry Coleman (Ryan Malgarini), about 9 years old, with two same-aged boys (Hayden Tank and Cayden Boyd) donning brassieres belonging to his 15 year old sister, Annabelle (Lindsay Lohan) then Harry rubbing the cups while pretending to moan with "o-o-o-o, o-o-o." What a thing to have little kids do in and as entertainment for little kids! I guess the writers were suffering the "you'll thank me when you're older" syndrome. Now those three kids (and maybe those who watch) are a little more worldly with a little more of their childhood stolen from them. Luke 17:2] I didn't write the movie, folks. I just tell you about the content so you can make an informed decision on your own whether a film is fit for your family or not. And I share with you His Word about some of the behaviors noted. Whether you take heed of His Word about the behaviors is up to you.
The morally dead MPAA decides what rating a movie earns based on, of course, what their equally morally dead survey population says is okay for toddlers and up if you give them "parental guidance." So, parental guidance is supposed to wash away images of sexual arousal even before they can spell it? What a poor way to prepare them for managing the inevitable fires of puberty rather than becoming enslaved by them. While standing in the real world we can see that Ryan Malgarini got such knowledge from the filmmakers. Where do you suppose your kids get such knowledge? [Luke 17:1] Accountability for sin is far reaching. The victims of our sin are usually not just ourselves, which again invokes Luke 17:2. And heed we must 2Cor. 6:3 which advises us to not put stumbling blocks (things and thoughts that cause them to sin) in the paths of our fellow man or woman by causing them to sin by the influence of ours whether for the sake of entertainment or not.
This movie is also rife with Anna's arrogance against and defiance of her mother, psychologist Dr. Tess Coleman (Jamie Lee Curtis) [Prov. 6:16 - 17; Heb. 13:17] and, to a lesser degree, against mom's soon-to-be new husband, Ryan (Mark Harmon) who will do his best to assume the role of dad following Mr. Coleman's death three years earlier. Quite animated teen comments from daughter to mother such as "You're wrecking my life" and "I'll kill myself" frequent the dialogue. Even Harry gets in on the act by saying things like "Shut up, you old ----" to his grandfather (Harold Gould). [Lam. 5:12]
"I'll kill myself?" Great day in the morning! Must we expose our teens and preteens to such acidic potential behavioral templates? [Prov. 20:20] Of course Freaky Friday is fantasy but that will not prevent such display from becoming a behavioral template for the one already tormented by the turmoil of puberty and social warfare. Harvard educated developmental psychologist and professor of psychology, Dr. Karen Nelson agrees with me that it would be unusual for even a 16 year old to be able to fully separate fantasy from reality or to fully anticipate the consequences of his/her behaviors. Such capabilities typically do not plateau until the early twenties.
There is also a sprinkling of belly skin with the top of girls' underwear showing. Even the writers decided to portray this as unacceptable since they had Tess as Anna pull one girl's top down to hide her belly skin. Now why would a mother want to hide the skin below a young girl's belly button? Need I answer that? If you need an answer, get a teenage boy to ask another teenage boy what he is thinking about when he sees such a display. I do know that in the more than 700 movie analyses I have done, many films use exposing belly skin to point attention to or tease about what follows, anatomically speaking. The Lizzie McGuire Movie had the same display only more of it more often. It, too, was a "tweenage" PG movie. I know this is very crude discussion but maybe it will awake some parents to what is happening. Though quite bold of me to speak that way to you, the zone of the topic is just too close to 18 years of commitment to ignore it. Especially when exposure to such display in and as entertainment for the age stratum typically least able to resist exploring and testing encourages disregard for inhibitions against doing so. Why make inhibitions any more difficult for them than they already are? [James 1:14, Rom. 16:17]
Freaky Friday was so filled with teen arrogance at parental authority that it earned a red CAPCon Alert light, meaning the score in one or more of the CAP investigation areas was lower than 54 out of 100. Indeed, the Impudence/Hate score where arrogance is incorporated was zero. Such programming for adolescent entertainment is truly in keeping with the trend of stealing childhood from children by conditioning them into nihilistic, arrogant and rebellious thinking/reasoning in the name of entertainment. Make them kids worldly and all but forget the boring and fun-killing the wisdom.
The movie had some cool things to say, but at what price? You can teach your children to never talk to you "that way" but there will likely come a time they will want to challenge such teaching. [Prov. 22:15] And then, what they "learned" from Freaky Friday (and every other corruptive influence observed in and as entertainment) may surface. All the things we experience at the hands of others and by our own hands tend to build us into how we interface with the myriad of social and authority diversities. And that which we have experienced lies in readiness, eagerly waiting at times for an opportunity to resurface much the same as little straight pins lost in the couch. When pushed too far, the "pins" resurface to make their point. And it is usually painful. Each time.
Noting an heated argument between Anna and her mother about which was more important to Anna -- a "once-in-a-lifetime" chance for her band, the Pink Slip Band to make it big or her presence at her mother's wedding reception -- the wise grandmother proprietor of the Chinese restaurant (Lucille Soong) gave the pair a pair of fortune cookies. A little Oriental "magic" erupted. During an earthquake only Anna and Tess could feel, the individualities of the dueling duo switched, mom into Anna's body and Anna into mom's body. Now, mom is again 15 years old and Anna has her wish of being "independent." The switch would not reverse until the pair could openly and genuinely express unselfish love for each other.
I haven't seen the original Freaky Friday (1976) and cannot say how the new age version is different than the original, but you can bet that if we can afford it I will do a comparative study if only to reveal the decay of morality and ethics of modern entertainment. We have done a couple such studies and in each case the "remake" is notably heavier with assaults on morality and ethics than the original. I suspect analysis of Freaky Friday (1976) will reveal the same. While the world has changed (a typical argument of our hate mailers), God's Word has not. And will not. Ever. It is not the job of His Word to "keep up" with the times but the responsibility of each of us to honor His Word. If there is friction between our world and His Word, we need to look to our world, not His Word for the cause of the friction. In our foolishness and arrogance, we have let our moral position relative to His Word become deplorable. As I have said on a number of occasions which I am certain many of you remember, we have become so drugged by the narcotics of vulgar extremes that what once was morally unacceptable has become morally invisible. Invisible to us, anyway. But not to God. And He, as Jesus, spent three days in Hell so you and I would not have to spend one moment there. Where is your allegiance?
Among a few other "good things" to say, Freaky Friday portrayed that getting even often leads to getting into trouble. [Heb. 10:30] Three episodes of getting even come to mind. Two of them were Anna getting revenge on the brutality of Maddie (Christina Vidal), an ex-friend of Anna since sixth grade. In each case, Anna was sent to detention -- examples of real world consequences. But in the third case, which involved unethical practices to falsify an exam, the consequences were age-appropriately shallow and obviously token, without real benefit to Anna. The consequences were that her boyfriend, Evan (Willie Garson) mentioned that he disapproved of of what Anna did, even though he was the one who unlocked the door so Anna could cheat and deceive.
One more. On Anna's bedroom door she had a sign which read "Parental Advisory: Keep Out of My Room." Professionally prepared, of course. While the bedroom may be Anna's bedroom, it is her mother's house.
This is what your kids will find in this new age Freaky Friday if they watch it. All in good humor, of course. Of course! Yes, I am a little bitter about Freaky Friday and all the other "Freaky Fridays" fed to our children nowadays. I am deeply grieved by the stealing of childhood from children, all in the name of entertainment. [Matt. 25:40]
Please read the itemized listing of findings in the Findings/Scoring section before you decide whether this film is fit for your family.
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.
***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.
Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
Sexual Immorality (S)
Offense to God (O)
Single Christian Network
|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.