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Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP Ministry)
Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones (which includes at-home teens) through you, their parents and grandparents, in His name by His Word

(2004), PG
Analysis Date
CAP Final Score
CAP Influence Density
June 10, 2004
83 out of 100

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

(2004), PG -- much a warm and gentle love story as it is a story of Garfield meets Odie.

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): 20th Century Fox, Davis Entertainment
Distribution (US): 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
Director(s): Peter Hewitt
Producer(s): John Davis, Michele Imperato, John Kilkenny, Neil A. Machlis, Brian Manis
Written by: Comic Strip - Jim Davis. Movie - Joel Cohen, Alec Sokolow
Cinematography/Camera: Dean Cundey
Music: Christophe Beck
Film Editing: Peter E. Berger
Casting: Brennan Dufresne, Risa Bramon Garcia
Production Design: Alec Hammond
Art Direction: Suttirat Anne Larlarb
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6

Garfield (voice of Bill Murry) was happy and content in his world of manipulating his owner, Jon (Breckin Meyer). Fat, happy and lazy was how beautiful veterinarian Dr. Elizabeth Wilson (Jennifer Love Hewitt) put it. According to Garfield, Jon did seem to be spending a lot of unnecessary time at the vet. One time when Jon took Garfield to the vet, Dr. Wilson approached Jon with a dog that she said would not make it if he had to be caged all the time. Unable to say no to Dr. Liz who has mesmerized Jon since high school, the little dog became Odie and permanent resident with Jon and Garfield. Now Jon had two pets and started to show what appeared to Garfield to be favoritism toward Odie by, for example, letting Odie sleep on Jon's bed when Garfield was never allowed to do so.

Odie possessed a lot of tricks. Dancing was his best, for which won Jon first place in a dog show. But one evening, one of Garfield's maneuvers to eject unwelcome Odie from the house resulted in Odie running away. Because of Odie's amazing tricks, Odie ended up in the hands of a nasty ousted newscaster, Happy Chapman (Stephen Tobolowsky), a local animal show host with the cat, Persnikitty (Alan Cumming). Chapman plans to brutalize Odie into more tricks and use him as a ticket to land him a regular spot on a New York TV show.

At the prompt of all the neighborhood pets, Garfield came to feel responsible for the loss of Odie, so Garfield launched a campaign to get Odie back. Then is when the most of the shenanigans happen. But know that this movie is almost as much a warm and gentle love story as it is a story of Garfield meets Odie. It is a "G-rated" love story indeed.

There is only one use of the three/four letter word vocabulary [Col. 3:8] and one use of God's name in vain but without the four letter expletive [Deut. 5:11] in the entire movie. Sexual matters are limited mostly to rather sensual dress in a background TV music video and an additional instance, a woman sitting in a very short skirt then crossing her legs and one case of where it was so obvious on what the camera was focusing [Eph. 5:3]. Violence is also limited to what might be called slapstick violence except in the cases of quite inhumane treatment of a dog. Rather abrasive name-calling might cause your younger adolescents to mimic what they hear. [Prov. 22:11, Prov. 15:26]

Let the somewhat short listing in the Findings/Scoring section tell you all that was found. With a final score of 83, Garfield: The Movie barely made it into the scoring range earned by PG movies (86 to 68 our of 100) in the comparative baseline database.

SPECIAL NOTE: We will be reducing the volume of coverage in the Summary/Commentary section of our reports and the number of reports generated in an effort to reduce costs until full funding can be achieved. The Findings/Scoring section of each report, the heart of the analysis model, will NOT be reduced in any way.

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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.

  • Col. 3:8 But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.
  • Deut. 5:11 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain: for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain. [Vain is shav' {shawv}: emptiness, nothingness, vanity, such as an expletive. With or without the four letter expletive, the use of God's name in any way other than respect, reverence or thoughtful discussion is in vain. That includes the popular three syllable sentence with His name trailing it AND the misuse of Jesus' name.]
  • Eph. 5:3 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God's holy people.
  • Prov. 22:11 He who loves a pure heart and whose speech is gracious will have the king for his friend.
  • Prov. 15:26 The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the LORD: but the words of the pure are pleasant words.

    ***Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry***
  • Ps. 12:8 The wicked freely strut about [e.g., create progressively vile/offensive entertainment with impunity and no consequences and present it to younger and younger audiences every year] when what is vile is honored among men [when enough people continue to defend it, embrace it, pay for it, enjoy it, want it, submit to it. I call attention to Ps. 12:8 to warn of the creeping desensitizing power of "entertainment."]
  • Col. 2:8 Beware lest any man [by his influence] spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
  • 1 Cor. 15:33 (KJV) Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. (NIV) Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.
  • Rom. 5:19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.
  • Jude 4 For certain men* whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change [warp, distort, falsely represent, situationally redefine, counterfeit, conditionally apply] the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord. [*men: anthropos {anth'-ro-pos}, generic, a human being, whether male or female]
  • Matt. 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto [or for] one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto [or for] me.
  • Luke 17:2 It would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around his neck than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. [cause by teaching or example]
  • Ps. 119:133 Direct my footsteps according to your word; let no sin rule over me.
  • John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
  • 1 Thess. 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.


    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)

    Garfield: The Movie (2004) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
  • inhumane treatment of a dog with electric shock
  • great fall with no consequences
  • animal attack of human with no injuries
  • assault with fist to jaw
  • electric shock of human as revenge

    Impudence/Hate (I)
  • one use of the three/four letter word vocabulary
  • lie
  • somewhat abrasive name-calling, repeatedly
  • selfishness throughout

    Sexual Immorality (S)
  • dressing to maximize the female form and/or skin exposure (in a background TV music video)
  • crude humor three times (Garfield swinging his posterior)
  • gamming (woman sitting in short skirt to maximize exposure of underside of upper legs) in background TV
  • camera angle to force viewer on private parts

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • none noted

    Offense to God (O)
  • a single use of God's name in vain without the four letter expletive

    Murder/Suicide (M)
  • none noted


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    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.

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