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Entertainment Media Analysis Report

The General's Daughter (1999), R
CAP Score: 28
CAP Influence Density: 2.04

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


*The General's Daughter* -- murder, rape, and foul language.......and Travolta.

*The General's Daughter* is a story of the gang rape of a military femme fatale Army Captain Elizabeth Campbell (Leslie Stefanson) who was also daddy's little girl -- to him anyway -- with an ugly skeleton in her closet. One of several colonels in the movie, Colonel Robert Moore (James Woods), the mentor for Elizabeth, also had a skeleton in his closet but not the same skeleton. And an army lawyer Captain had a skeleton in his closet, too, the same skeleton in Moore's closet. Captain Liz's father, General Joe Campbell (James Cromwell), the three-star General in command of Fort McCallum, lost all of her trust and respect when he told her to forget that the gang rape ever happened "for the good of the service". Warrant Officer Paul Brenner (John Travolta), a military cop for internal affairs, led the investigations opposite a rape investigator Sarah Sunderland (Madeleine Stowe), Travolta's former love. The military entourage were engaged in research and training into PsyOps (psychological warfare operations). Lots of mind games were played. Some typical theatric devices were used such as the real killer was not the one most would suspect. Another device was, as is typical with modern entertainment, dark pasts were added to complicate the characters.

There were several intensely graphic scenes of a dead, spread-eagled fully nude female (and you can guess from which angle -- an angle to maximize viewing of private regions). Included in the choreography was a visible act of sexual intercourse as part of a frenzied gang rape, and even sadomasochism brutality and insanity. There was murder staged as a suicide with a bullet hole in the victim's head with blood pooled all over the place, a strangulation murder, and a suicide by a "Bouncing Betty" anti-personnel land mine. Attempted murder by automatic gunfire and knife colored the choreography as well. A graphic death by motorboat propeller to the head gave a rather gruesome touch. And the three/four letter word vocabulary plus the most foul of the foul words filled the script at about once every two or three minutes. And God's name in vain with and without the four letter expletive peppered the script, too.

This movie was a very good example of what could have been a truly fine adult story of intrigue if it were not for all the ignominy. If none of it was there, *The General's Daughter* would be an example of what would be real adult entertainment -- not because it should not be seen or heard by kids, but because it would not likely to be enjoyable to them -- enjoyable for adults only because a wide experience base and good reasoning skills would be necessary to make any sense of the story. Do you remember the good movies? Before the new age freedom from accountability movies? The old Bogart, Cagney, and Wayne movies? Before guts splattered the walls during gun battles? When a sex scene was implied rather than explicit, e.g., when the camera stayed in the hallway after a newlywed couple shut the door of their honeymoon suite? When there was respect? When God was important? And so on.......

For the best representation of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie, visit the Findings/Scoring section below.

FINDINGS / SCORING: The Gneral's Daughter (1999) CAP Thermometers

NOTE: Multiple occurrences of each item described below are likely.

Wanton Violence/Crime (W):
• firearms, automatic gunfire • illegal arms dealing • attempted murder • death by propeller • knife attack • leg of a dead body • struggle for life • beating attack • murder scene • long sequence of a murder victim • violent attack of a woman with hard verbal threats and injuries • brutal police tactics • gang rape with injuries • injury gore • reckless driving to rescue

Impudence/Hate (I)(1):
• 18 uses of the most foul of the foul words • 37 uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary • series of lies to cover up behavior and/or accountability • father and daughter coercing each other • "Killing for recreation" bumper sticker • talk of divorce as if ordering a soda

Sex/Homosexuality (S):
• full frontal spread-eagled female nudity many times • sexual comments, innuendo, talk, insult, and bravado • sex toys • sadomasochism • full rear male nudity • homosexual relationship and rationale • slang references to human genitalia • sexual intercourse within gang rape sequence

Drugs/Alcohol (D):
• bar, booze, and drinking

Offense to God (O)(2):
• 6 uses of God's name in vain with the four letter expletive and 13 uses without

Murder/Suicide (M)(3):
• graphic sex murder • murder with implication of suicide showing bullet hole in the victim's head and blood pooled • suicide by explosion • murder by strangulation

(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. As required of the Holy Scriptures, unless God's name is used with reverence to His glory and praise, its use is considered in vain.

(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.

Additional reviews of this movie may be located at "Movie Review Query Engine at Telerama."

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

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