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


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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
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Frequency (2000), (PG-13)
CAP Score: 39
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: We make no scoring allowances for Hollywood's trumped-up "messages" to excuse, or its manufacturing of justification for aberrant behavior or imagery. 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 objectuve and is the heart of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie.

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


*Frequency* (PG-13) -- another R-13 though prefaced with some good family values. This is the third PG-13 in a row that has earned a score equivalent to R-rated movies. I guess that is to be expected since the PG-13 of nowadays is a slice off the top of the R rating so younger kids can go see R programming. Like I said. R-13. Just to remind the skeptical, the same identical analysis model and the same identical analyst were used on this movie as were used on movies during the development of the baseline database in 1995. The very same. So, I can vouch that the model has not changed. And since the same analyst using the same computer and the same computer program and the same mathematical equations performed the number crunching, these parameters are unlikely to be corrupting or contaminating. The likely variable is the acceptance standards of the MPAA. Do we need any more evidence?

Frank Sullivan (Dennis Quaid) and his little son, Johnny, affectionately named Chief (later played by Jim Caviezel) were a great father and son team [Prov. 6:20; 23:24]. And mom, Julia (Elizabeth Mitchell) was the staple between them [Prov. 1:8], in love with them both them as it should be. I *liked* this part of the show. And it is NOT fantasy to think a family could be this way. Good family values and a very loving relationship were displayed well. There were no children screaming obscenities at a parent [Eph. 6:1]. No parent screaming obscenities at the other [Eph 5:22-25, 28, 33]. No child abuse [Eph. 6:4]. And no cheating, no deceit, no apathy -- a good family indeed -- in this part of the show [See Scriptures below].

Jumping ahead 30 years to 1999, we find John in the same house he grew up in having marital friction. John is a NYC cop having broke with family tradition of three generations of firefighters. Now the pleasant family orientation of the movie is lost. John's wife leaves him for ... some reason. Now, John is alone in his father's house except for his neighbor and friend from childhood Gordo (Andre Braugher) and his son who calls John "Uncle" though John does not want him to. One evening when Gordo and his son were visiting John, the young lad finds a footlocker and asks if he can tear into it. The boy finds the old ham radio (amateur radio) set that belonged to Frank. They fire it up and it works. All the while, some extraordinary solar storm activity is creating an Aurora Borealis of never known proportions. Combined, the sunspot activity and the Aurora Borealis create radio communication conditions on the ham radio wavelength that enable talking to someone in the past -- or the future, depending on your perspective. And guess who answers John's CQs ... his father, Frank. But frank is dead!? He died on October 12, 1969 in heroic rescue attempts of a warehouse fire.

On October 11, 1999 John remembered his father's heroics as the anniversary of his father's death neared. Wait a minute! October 12, the anniversary, is tomorrow! John, so in love with his father decided to take advantage of the electromagnetic loophole in reality to tip his father about his coming death 30 years ago. While in the burning warehouse after locating the victim, Frank remembered John's warning and avoided the path that would have led to Frank's death and survives the day. Speculation of the loss of integrity of the present caused by changing the past is well known and this movie takes detailed advantage of the speculation. For example, if someone were to travel into the past and prevent your parents from ever meeting, you would cease to exist. All the lives yours has touched would never have been touched by yours. And the impact(s) of your touch in their lives would never have touched untold others. Those changes would in turn make cascading changes in other lives, maybe to the nth degree. By the same string of domino style changes in the past caused by John's tip to his father, John finds out in 1999 by reviewing a serial killer case file that on October 16, 1969 his mother, whom he had just talked with (in 1999), was murdered 30 years ago.

Time tip number 2 comes when John warns his father about the upcoming murder of his mother and sets in motion a string of events that takes close attention. But John's mother is not dead after all. Then she was dead but now she's not!? Frank dies at least twice in this movie but is not dead!? In the end Frank saves his son's life by killing the murderer of his dead wife, who is not dead, who was trying to kill John. With each tip from John of future events ... er ... past events ... er ... past events that have not happened ... {argh!} a different time line is created with a whole new set of events. One of the perspective-setting portrayals in the move was told in the previews -- that in 1969 Frank placed his billfold under loose floorboards in the window box for Frank to find 30 years later but at the same instant 30 years earlier. Another portrayal was a little far-fetched. After destruction of the radio in 1999, Frank used a soldering iron in 1969 to write a message on the radio table while John watched it appear in 1999 as Frank was writing it in 1969.

Some really neat science fiction maneuvers give this movie somewhat of a riveting property. If not riveting then interest-maintaining. The viewer must get on board and stay on board to keep track of the intricate strings of events that happen in the different time lines created by the changings of the past and present simultaneously. *Frequency* could have been a really good Saturday night sci-fi flick if it were not for all the drinking, smoking, and foul language.

I can find no specific Scripture speaking directly to altering the past to improve the future or about changing the past to change what has happened or will happen. If anyone can fund such Scripture, please let me know. I do believe that our time is the domain of our Lord and is not ours to control or change. Since Jesus tells us in Matt. 24:36 "No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father." regarding the Second Coming of Christ, I seriously doubt He would look well upon anyone who was to alter what has happened or what must happen: "Since no man knows the future, who can tell him what is to come?" [Eccl. 8:7] Though I cannot find fortification in the Bible, I believe we have no business messing with time.


  • Prov. 6:20 My son, keep thy father's commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
  • Prov. 23:24 The father of a righteous man has great joy; he who has a wise son delights in him.
  • Prov. 1:8 Listen, my son, to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching.
  • Esth. 1:20 And when the king's decree which he shall make shall be published throughout all his empire, (for it is great,) all the wives shall give to their husbands honour, both to great and small.
  • Eph. 5:22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
  • Eph. 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
  • Eph. 5:24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
  • Eph. 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
  • Eph. 5:28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
  • Eph. 5:33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
  • Eph. 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.
  • Eph. 6:2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;
  • Eph. 6:3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.
  • Eph. 6:4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

    Please see the Findings/Scoring section below for a full accounting of this movie: for the best representation of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie.

    FINDINGS / SCORING: Frequency (2000) CAP Thermometers

    NOTE: Multiple occurrences of each item described below may be likely.

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W):
  • traffic wreck
  • rescue dangers
  • firefighting dangers
  • skeletal remains
  • still pictures of murder
  • threats with a firearm
  • attempted electrocution
  • multiple attempted murder by firearm
  • attempted murder by beating/drowning
  • gunfire
  • long series of fighting
  • using a child as a shield from gunfire
  • some gore

    Impudence/Hate (I)(1):
  • 33 uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary
  • disobeying an order by proper authority leading to risking life
  • hotdog heroics
  • lies to deflect accountability

    Sex/Homosexuality (S):
  • dress to maximize female form/skin exposure

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • many scenes of booze and drinking
  • drinking to settle anxiety
  • profuse smoking
  • partying with drinking

    Offense to God (O)(2):
  • 2 uses of God's name in vain with the four letter expletive and 8 times without

    Murder/Suicide (M)(3):
  • stills of murdered women (at least three different women)
  • shotgun killing

  • (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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    Thomas A. Carder
    ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP)

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