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(2006), NR [Lite PG-13*] (1hr 24min)

Analysis Date
CAP Final Score
CAP Influence Density
February 8, 2007
66 out of 100

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(While the Scriptural references are certainly not subjective, my commentary may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)

If Scriptural references appear, the full text appears at the end of the Summary / Commentary.

(2006), NR [Lite PG-13*] -- ...a very  thought-provoking, Faith-filled Word-based film ... of sinful behaviors

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Blazing Sun Productions
Distribution (US): Pure Flix Entertainment
Director(s): Carey Scott
Producer(s): Milton Mabry, Corin Nemec, Michael Scott, Steve Seabury, David A.R. White, Logan White, Russell Wolfe
Written by: Sean Paul Murphy, Timothy Ratajczak, Carey Scott, Michael Scott, David A.R. White, Russell Wolfe
Cinematography/Camera: Todd Barron
Music: Albert Chang
Film Editing: Brandon Dumas, Jeremy Heemskerk, Christopher Hooper
Casting: Billy DaMota
Production Design: Michael Levinson
Art Direction: Jaclyn Marshall
Viewed on Pure Flix Entertainment Screener's DVD

This is a special request analysis of Hidden Secrets  (2006) using a screener's copy provided by the Production department through Pure Flix Entertainment LLC, 8040 East Morgan Trail, Suite 25, Scottsdale, AZ 85258. This analysis is a gratuity to the filmmakers. No monies were received.

I feel a sermon coming on. It might be a long one. Please bear with me. And remember that it is not our "job" to tell you whether context justifies content. That is your job. We just use His Word to tell you what is there so you might be in a better position to make an informed moral decision whether a film is fit for your family or intended audience.

Hidden Secrets  is a very  thought-provoking, Faith-filled Word-based film about one's checkered past resurfacing. Embedded within that element is love, friendship, redemption and forgiveness. Inherent with any story telling of sinful behaviors, this film presents much, sometimes tempting, discussion about and admission of sins. That is what this film is about. Remember, folks, as you read on understand it is not my job to tell you whether context justifies content. We tell you what is there and share with you His Word about noted behaviors ... you decide whether the film is fit.

This Summary/Commentary begins the report with a discussion of the first few minutes of the story to better enable informed discussion about the noted behaviors. Fancy words aside, this format makes it easier to sermonize.

The film opens with 32-year old Michael Stover (Corin Nemec), the first to be seen of a clique of friends from childhood, apparently a practitioner of homosexuality, contemplating suicide with a cocked handgun at his right temple and his finger on the trigger, apparently because of the internal torment caused by practicing homosexuality; torment apparently caused by his "Am I really forgiven" lack of faith that Jesus will forgive our sins -- no matter how bad they seem to us -- if we ask believing.

Michael's scene of contemplating suicide is followed by scenes of Sherry Hayden (Tracy Melchior), another of the clique of childhood friends, in deep sorrow preparing to bury her brother Chris lost in a car wreck. Soon we meet former Youth Minister and ex-advertising exec Jeremy Evans (David A.R. White) driving with Rachel Wilson (Staci Keanan), his girlfriend of two years, to attend Chris' funeral.

Next appears #1 Times Best Selling author Harold Mirfin (Gregg Binkley) and his wife Rhonda (Autumn Paul) at their home with their three toddlers as they prepare to attend the funeral. As we hear Pastor Norman Wexler (Reginald Vel Johnson) begin the funeral proceedings at the New Life Church, we meet Anthony DeMeo (Sean Sedgwick) in his car as he lifts the dress shoulder strap of his girlfriend, Sally (Rachael Lampa) to hide the tattoo on her back. Continuing in the beginnings of character building we again meet Michael, not with a gun to his head but alone at Chris' funeral and obviously troubled by the loss of his long time friend ... and by other hidden secret matters.

At the New Life Church, Pastor Wexler speaks positively of Chris' influence on those he knew and about his calling. The camera pans the congregation with all of Chris's friends as Jeremy tries from the pulpit to describe his boyhood relationship with Chris. Soon another of Chris' friends, the rude non-Christian stem cell research contractor Gary Zimmerman (John Schneider) bursts in. After the services the congregation moves to the burial site as the camera continues to pan the group of Chris' friends while the story continues to build characters by showing us little tidbits of their personalities.

From there, the film moves to Sherry's house for the post-funeral gathering where we get to know more about Chris' friends, including more of the hidden secrets. First is Rhonda with her judgmentalism. Moving to Jeremy and Rachel as they sit on a sofa (she in a somewhat provocative dress, evidently as a filming device to build the desired character), Harold and Anthony approach the pair to engage in small talk.

As the camera moves through pods of conversation, Rhonda approaches Michael as they engage in speaking to marriage and family. Michael is single and Rhonda reminds him of 1 Cor. 7:2 by telling him it is not good for a man to be alone. Then Michael deceives Rhonda by counterfeiting 1 Cor. 7:1 by saying the Bible also says it is not good for a man to touch a woman. To that Rhonda says, unawares of Michael's history, "How I wish there were more men like you." When Rhonda shares Michael's implied celibacy with Sherry, Sherry replies with "That I can believe." There is a specific plot point to the "little do they know" comments of Michael's and Sherry's and others -- that Michael has been a practitioner of homosexuality for along time and that Chris was apparently Michael's partner. This is why I said "counterfeiting 1 Cor. 7:1."

Additional mini-group conversations continue as Rachel begins to suspect her boyfriend Jeremy of having a closet relationship with Sherry that has lived on after 10 years of being apart. "Half Jewish" Gary continues to mock the Faith with comments such as "Christians! Where are the lions when you need them?" while lifting his eyes skyward as if asking God.

Rhonda is portrayed as a viciously judgmental woman, quoting the Scriptures at characters as if the Scriptures are weapons with which to attack. Well, the Scriptures are  "weapons." His Word is our Armor, our Sword. That Rhonda is so vindictive with them does not change the Truth of His Word. Neither do self-absolving manipulations such as Gary's "There are several schools of thought on that issue" change His Word. In contrast, Jeremy also quoted Scriptures which point to the sins of some of the characters but did so in a more humble and edifying way, admitting his own sins rather than thinking himself to be above sin. That a Scripture applies to a noted behavior should not be a deterrent from speaking His Word to sinners, even ourselves (upon which Jeremy also touched). But how we do it is the issue.

Along the same lines as Rhonda's demonization of Scriptures, Anthony bellows that her manner of use of His Word is what drives so many away from Christianity. I've heard that before. We must be very careful with that "school of thought." No matter how His Word is flavored or counterfeited by the pharisaic its Truth does not change. Rather, many times when people avoid Christianity because of His Word it is because of an entirely different matter: that some want to reject His Word because it gets in their way and are looking for a cinch in the armor. We have a publication that addresses that very point. Please note our publication You Make All Christians Look Bad.... The bottom line of the article is "So, it is not people like me who tell His Word unbridled and unabridged who are driving people away from Christianity or Christ. It is the people who say we do who are."

When dressing for the funeral as Gary puts on a necktie in front of a mirror in a hallway of Sherry's home he asks Rhonda whether Jesus would approve of his tie. To that Rhonda said "I don't think the Lord notices what people are wearing." We must be careful with that "school of thought" also. For example, if one wears see-me things to express arrogance, defiance and/or rebellion as is apparently the "trademark" of the punk culture, Jesus notices. If one wears clothing to maximize the human form and/or skin exposure, He notices. If a man wears a woman's attire, He notices. It is all matter of the heart. For what is chosen to go on the outside comes from the inside.

Another of Rhonda's Scripture darts is "you don't cast pearls in front of swine" regarding Sherry bringing non-believing Gary to church. To that Harold throws "judge not lest ye be judged" at Rhonda. Rhonda's use of Matt. 7:6 is of course correct though her judgment of Gary and application of Matt. 7:6 to him might not be. Further, her manner may be counterproductive regarding trying to edify they who reject God ("swine") with nuggets of God's Truth ("pearls"). Remember that Jesus, who is Head of the Church, came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. [Mark 2:17] Who needs Jesus more than divisive folks like Gary [divisive - hairetikos  {hahee-ret-ee-kos'}: schismatic, factious, a follower of a false doctrine]? And where else might one better learn of Jesus' Sacrifice for our sakes than in church? But heed God's wisdom. God has advised us to admonish the divisive once, then admonish them twice. After that, have nothing more to do with them. [Titus 3:10-11] I believe Titus 3:10-11 is one of those "Let go - Let God" matters. God may send someone else to try it all over again ... and again ... then someone else ... and someone else ... until His Will is served to His satisfaction. The point I believe is that you have planted Seeds once, then twice. Let Jesus nourish them if He so desires. If Jesus decides to nourish the Seeds you have planted, He may want to use the church to do so. And if you have kicked the sinner out of church ...? Now, there's a thought! Kick all the sinners out of church. Would there be anyone left? Even a pastor? Would not the church members kicking out they who the members feel are sinners be hypocrisy?

What is more questionable than Rhonda's use of Matt. 7:6 is Harold's use of Matt. 7:1, the "judge not lest ye be judged" verse. In Matt. 7:1 Jesus was not telling us to not judge at all. If we could not judge how could we tell the swine from the righteous, right from wrong, good from bad? Indeed, Jesus commands  that we judge [1Cor. 6:2-3 as one and only one example] but judge behavior not the individual, the deed not the doer and never by mere appearances or by assumption which can be misleading. [John 7:24] As Jesus separated the deed from the doer so must we. (See our Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged!) Embrace the doer but not the deed. We must be accurate with His Word but do so in the loving and compassionate way as did our Lord. Never once did Jesus compromise the Father's Truth while teaching us of it or applying it to us but never did He look down His nose at us or think of Himself above us. [Mark 9:35]

Some folks seem to think that once forgiven by the Blood there are no consequences. Sherry brings out an often missed point regarding being forgiven by the Blood of Christ which forgives all sin: past, present, future. She reminds us that after Salvation we still have to temporally pay for our sins but once Saved our sins are forgiven and payment will no longer include condemnation to Hell.

But is suicide forgivable? We are forgiven of our sins if  we ask forgiveness believing. If we are dead we cannot ask. I have found nothing in the Scriptures to say that one who commits suicide is condemned but His Word does condemn [unforgiven] murder. Suicide is murder of the self. And there is no chance of asking forgiveness of sin after death (which is a good reason for asking forgiveness of our sins every day since death may come in an instant). Is suicide then a condemning choice? I don't know. Jesus' precious gift of Salvation assures us that once we are Saved we are forgiven of all our sins: past, present, future. But does that mean since Michael was Saved by the Blood, if he had committed suicide would he be forgiven of it? I don't know. Michael wrote in a suicide note "Am I really forgiven?" That means he doubted Christ's assurance of forgiveness through Salvation. Does that mean he was not really Saved? I don't know. As I said, this is a very  thought-provoking film.

Hidden Secrets  is packed with tools for contemplation of sin and the consequences, of redemption and forgiveness through the Blood of Christ and with many things to awaken one's heart to His Word. But please be careful with "schools of thought" that seem to fit an agenda -- that fill our bellies [Rom. 16:17, 18]. If there is anything you see and hear in this film or any other film and even this report that seems "contrary to the doctrine", open that Bible and check it out for yourself.

Following are individual investigation area discussions of the content. They are narrative format summary discussions of the itemized listing of findings in the Findings/Scoring section for those who would rather read a narrative format than a list. They are also used to better enable textually strategic placement of Scriptural applications. Please understand, though, that the discussions are not intended to be exhaustive. Look to the listing in the Findings/Scoring section for the most complete representation of the content of this film.

Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
As noted at the beginning of this Summary/Commentary, there is a portrayal of near-suicide. [Ex. 20:13] While a fatal shot is not seen and pounds of flesh are not splattered on the wall as is the case with many Hollywood films portraying suicide, Michael is seen with the gun to his head and cocking the hammer with his finger on the trigger. Later, Michael admits to almost committing suicide, admits to having a gun to his head. Michael also holds a discussion with Jeremy alluding to the intense crime of having suffered child sexual abuse, i.e., homosexual pedophilia. [Luke 17:2, Matt. 25:40] While there is blood from scratches after a fall by Jeremy from Sherry's roof there is no gore in this film.

Impudence/Hate (I)
There are no noted uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary nor any issues of a child rebelling against his/her parents or other such matters of impudence and/or hate. However, Sally and Anthony both sport tattoos, he many more than she [Lev. 19:28] and Rachel lies a couple times [Rev. 21:8, Prov. 6:16...19].

Sexual Immorality (S)
There is a considerable amount of discussion about and references to sexually immoral behaviors by a few of the players. There is an instance of inappropriate touch as a male patron of a restaurant hugs his female companion from behind. And this being a story which includes the misery created by practicing homosexuality, there are a number of references to and discussions about the practice of homosexuality. [1 Cor. 6:9 - 10]

Rachel's character is built in part by her expressing a certain amount of excitement at the possibility of sleeping with Jeremy while he is abstinent and rejects her advances. One of her advances is when she reaches through a wall of pillows Jeremy built to separate the two as they shared a bed in Sherry's house. Rachel is also noted wearing clothing which obviously permit somewhat excessive cleavage/breast exposure, an obvious character-describing filming device since no other women did.

When Rhonda tells Gary that Jesus probably doesn't notice what people wear, he spouts "Then I'll go naked."

A note about the chosen practice of homosexuality. No matter how the spinmeisters, agenda agents and social engineers try to absolve us from accountability to His Word, by His Word it is a sin to practice homosexuality. Indeed, it is sinful to participate in any  sexual contact (including visual), conduct or activity outside of a monogamous heterosexual marriage. But know well that s/he who chooses to practice homosexuality (or heterosexually immoral deeds) is as precious to Jesus as you and I. It is some of our chosen behaviors He hates.

We must not  be tolerant of sin. Not even our own. We must not  embrace the sin as we embrace the sinner. One does NOT have to "accept" the sin to accept and love the sinner. We do not  have to participate in or encourage or  ignore the sin to "reach" the sinner. To do so would encourage  the sinner to continue in the sin, which would be a sin on ourselves. While Jesus is supremely  tolerant of us, He is supremely INtolerant of sin. Jesus never  encouraged sin or demonstrated sin or participated in it to teach us about it. Jesus never preached the evils of sin by joining the sinners in their sin or thinking sin is okay for a few. He embraced us as sinners but He never joined us in our sin. He was never afraid to call a sin a sin or a sinner a sinner and went out of His way to do so. And to stick our heads in the sand about sin is also a sin on ourselves. We must love the practitioner enough to have the courage to tell him/her the Truth. Even ourselves. Not in one single case did Jesus ever demonstrate, participate in or even encourage our participation in a sin OR tolerate it to teach us of it.

Jesus could see a king in a thief and saw an Apostle in a murderer. By and in His love for us Jesus separates the sin from the sinner, the deed form the doer. Let us do our best to follow His Perfect Lead by sharing the Truth but never "accepting" or "tolerating" the sin to embrace the sinner.

Drugs/Alcohol (D)
The only content found to fit in this investigation area was Anthony's smoking.

Offense to God (O)
In most Word-based films there are story-building presentations of anti-Christian behaviors and comments. Typically some of the characters counterfeit His Word to justify their defiance of it and their sinful choices. This film is no different. There are a number of uses of Scriptures as tools of attack and counterfeitings of them to support sinful choices In addition, there is mocking of God as humor, using sins in the Bible to justify our own and calling faith in God a myth. In one case, Jeremy says something I would not have expected of him: "I'd prefer a more believable passage." And Michael falls back on the worn out and vain attack of "It's those kinds of words that drive people form Christianity."

Murder/Suicide (M)
There were no murders or completed suicides noted. Attempted murder and attempted suicide are incorporated into the Wanton Violence/crime investigation area.


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.


  • 1 Cor. 7:2 Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.
  • 1 Cor. 7:1 Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. ["Not to touch a woman." God is wise to rationalizations of man. "Touch" is haptomai {hap'-tom-ahee}; of carnal intercourse with a woman or cohabitation for sex. This verse does not  speak to the practice of homosexuality.]
  • Matt. 7:6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.
  • Matt. 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged...
  • Mark 2:17 When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
  • Titus 3:10-11 Warn [admonish] a divisive person once, and then warn him a second time. After that, have nothing to do with him. You may be sure that such a man is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.
  • 1Cor. 6:2-3 Do you not know that the saints [the saved; Christians] will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life!
  • John 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.
  • Mark 9:35 And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all. [Unbeknownst to myself at the time of adopting a philosophy, this verse is the basis for my personal doctrine: that to be a good leader one must first know how and when to be a good follower.]
  • Rom. 16:17, 18 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. [The NIV translates the use of "belly" to "appetite."]
  • Ex 20:13 Thou shalt not kill. (NIV) You shall not murder.
  • Lev. 19:28 " `Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD.
  • Rev. 21:8 But the [unforgiven] fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers [the NIV calls it "magic arts" which includes those who practice evil magic including witches, warlocks, wizards, sorcerers, spiritists, diviners, necromancers, etc.], and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. [This is one of the verses Rhonda used as a dart, counterfeiting its purpose and meaning.]
  • Prov. 6:16...19 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: ... A false witness that speaketh lies ...
  • 1 Cor. 6:9-10 Know ye not that the [unforgiven] unrighteous [adikos: unjust, sinful] shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived:
  • neither fornicators [pornos: a man who prostitutes his body to another's lust for hire, a male prostitute, a man who indulges in immoral sexual intercourse],
  • nor idolaters [eidololatres: a worshipper of false gods, even mammom (wealth, riches)],
  • nor adulterers,
  • nor effeminate [malakos: he who keeps a boy kept for homosexual relations (such as the North American Man-boy Love Association - NAMBLA); a male who submits his body to unnatural lewdness; a male prostitute],
  • nor abusers of themselves with mankind [arsenokoites: one who lies with a male as with a female, sodomite, homosexual practitioner],
  • Nor thieves, nor covetous [pleonektes: one eager to have more, esp. what belongs to others],
  • nor drunkards,
  • nor revilers,
  • nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

  • ***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 Be not deceived: evil [kakov: of a bad nature, not such as it ought to be] communications corrupt good manners.
  • Rom. 5:19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
  • Jude 1:4 For there are certain men* crept in unawares [secretly slipped in among us], who were before of old ordained to this condemnation [whose condemnation was written about long ago], ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness [a license for immorality], and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. [*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 one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
  • Luke 17:2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones. [Offend: skandalizo {skan-dal-id'-zo} - scandalize; to entice to sin; to cause a person to begin to distrust and desert one whom he ought to trust and obey; to cause to fall away.]
  • Ps. 119:133 Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me [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. ["Evil" includes all things that are sinful.]


    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 objective heart of the CAP Analysis Model, independent of and insulated from the Summary / Commentary section.)

    Hidden Secrets (2006) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
  • near-suicide with cocked gun at the head and finger on the trigger
  • tale of child sexual abuse (homosexual pedophilia) leading to choosing homosexuality
  • fall with injuries
  • description of near suicide

    Impudence/Hate (I)
  • several tattoos, repeatedly
  • lies
  • "I don't think the Lord notices what people are wearing"

    Sexual Immorality (S)
  • excessive cleavage, repeatedly
  • woman expressing excitement about a possible sexual encounter
  • woman attempting to touch a man, ostensively to entice sexually
  • inappropriate touch
  • admissions of sexually immoral behavior
  • admission of getting an abortion from pregnancy by sexually immoral behavior
  • admission of practicing homosexuality with several discussions about the practice of homosexuality
  • "Then I'll go naked"

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • smoking, twice

    Offense to God (O)
  • counterfeiting of Scripture, repeatedly, e.g., to support sinful choice
  • use of Scriptures as a "weapon" and/or to attack, repeatedly
  • calling God and faith in Him a myth
  • mocking God as humor
  • using sins in the Bible to justify our own
  • "I'd prefer a more believable passage"
  • "It's those kind of words that drive people away from Christianity"

    Murder/Suicide (M)
  • none noted (Only completed murders and suicides are incorporated into this investigation area. Attempts at murder and suicide are incorporated into Wanton Violence/Crime.)

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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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