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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
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(2010), PG [PG*] (1hr 39min)

Final Score
Analysis Date
Date Posted
Influence Density
February 5, 2011
February 5, 2011

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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.

(2010), PG [PG*] ... The writers did an excellent job of ...

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Summit Entertainment, Applehead Pictures
Distribution (US): Summit Entertainment
Director(s): Gary Winick
Producer(s): Ellen Barkin, Mark Canton, Eric Feig, Caroline Kaplan, Marco Valerio Pugini, Ron Schmidt, Patrick Wachsberger
Writing Credits: Jose Rivera, Tim Sullivan
Cinematography/Camera: Marco Pontecorvo
Music: Andrea Guerra
Film Editing: Bill Pankow
Casting: Béatrice Kruger, Ellen Lewis, Cindy Tolan
Production Design: Stuart Wurtzel
Art Direction: Stefano Maria Ortolani, Saverio Sammali
Viewed on Summit Home Entertainment DVD

Letters to Juliet is a touching, moving and warm love story about rekindling a 50 year old love through the efforts of softie Sophie Hall (Amanda Seyfried), a fact checker for a The New Yorker. Though the story is about 65 year old Claire Smith (Vanessa Redgrave) finding the love she walked out on 50 years ago in 1957, Sophie becomes a "victim" of her own efforts to find Claire's lost love.

But Letters to Juliet has a few jagged edges morally speaking which is why it earned a CAP final score of 76 instead of a much higher score. This is great film of a great story. If it were not for all the drinking. the uses of God's name in vain and some "sexual situations", this film would be a great G-equivalent "chick flick" love story! And deleting all the drinking and abuses of God's name would not lose the film one iota of its cinematic power.

Other than the drinking and the abuses of God's name, a few other jagged edges of "lesser" examples of immorality appear such as art nudity, anatomical references and cohabitation but without scenes of sex. If all the matters of "lesser" assault such as these and the drinking and abuses of God's name were left out, this film would have earned a final score of 100 and would still have been as great a film. Not one single iota of plot or story support or wattage was provided by any assault on morality. Not one. I guess the writers/filmmakers were afraid of the "G" label; afraid no one would want to see the film unless it had at least some slaps in the face of wholesome morality.

In a pre-wedding vacation to Verona, Italy with her restaurant-starting, opportunity-seeking fiancé, Victor (Gael García Bernal), during her times of being left alone by "win-win" Victor as he met with suppliers for his restaurant, Sophie stumbles upon a "wailing wall." But rather than a wailing wall for the faithful it is a wailing wall for the forlorn: a wall of the Casa Di Giulietta, the House of Juliet. Visitors attach letters of their sad stories to the wall and the Secretaries of Juliet fetch the letters to write responses to them.

Sophie manages to become a temporary member of the Secretaries of Juliet and finds a letter behind a loose stone in the wall. It is a 50 year old letter from Claire then Smith now Wyman whose husband has since died. Soon, we meet Charlie Wyman, grandson of Claire, who has appeared with his grandmother to confront the impudent young upstart who has stirred up feelings in his grandmother Charlie felt should have been left alone. Grandmother doesn't agree with Charlie and wants to, at the suggestion of Sophie, try to find her 50 year old love. Get two women focused on love together and any man who is realistic is background noise, is at best a necessary evil. Such is the lot for Charlie as Sophie and Claire scour the countryside looking for Claire's Lorenzo Bartolini, one of 74 Lorenzo Bartolini's within about 60 miles of Sienna.

There is the basis of this delightful love story. The writers did an excellent job of portraying a growing love. Too bad the film is not cc'ed. If it were a TVGuardian unit would filter out the abuses of God's name and the single use of profanity, making this film equivalent to many G-rated films.

Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - 100 out of 100
There was nothing at all even remotely associated with violence in the entire 99 minutes of programming.

Impudence/Hate (I) - 83 out of 100
The single use of profanity was as uniquely unnecessary as the lies to manipulate the situation at hand and the rude hand gestures. [Col. 3:8]

Sexual Immorality (S) - 73 out of 100
Here the content gets a little more dense: art nudity; sexual harassment; a woman wrapping her legs around a man; cohabitation without display of sex; female ogling at male anatomy in swim suits; an anatomical reference. But that is all. [Eph. 5:3 - 5, 1 Cor. 7:1-2]

Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 43 out of 100
Drinking is a major element of content in this film. Seven times someone imbibes some alcoholic beverage. Sure, drinking wine is commonplace in Italy but that does not negate the influence of presenting alcoholic drinking to adolescents, so sayeth the American College of Physicians (ACP).

A 2002 study by the ACP revealed that adolescent exposure to drinking in and as entertainment undeniably leads to abuse of alcohol among underage viewers. The finding entitled Relation Between Parental Restrictions on Movies and Adolescent Use of Tobacco and Alcohol reports that of 4544 youths from grades 5 through 8 of fifteen Vermont and New Hampshire middle schools (90% of the youths were under fourteen years old) only 16% were completely restricted in their entertainment diets. Within the ACP study population, the prevalence of having tried alcohol without parental knowledge was

• 46% for those with no viewing restrictions
• 16% for those with partial viewing restrictions
• four percent for those with complete viewing restrictions. [Eph. 5:18]

Offense to God (O) - 60 out of 100
Though Italy seems to be a God-fearing* country, this film is not. It presents 12 abuses of His name. Though each is without the four letter expletive, abuse of God's name is a sin whether used with the four letter expletive or not. [Deut. 5:11]

* God fearing. Does that mean we are to be afraid of Him? See our publication Fear of God for the answer.

Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100 There were no murders or suicides noted.


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.


  • Col. 3:8 But now ye also put off [rid yourself of] all these; anger, wrath, malice [kakia: ill-will, desire to injure, wickedness, depravity, evil, trouble, not ashamed to break laws, etc.], blasphemy [blasphemia: impious and reproachful speech injurious to divine majesty], filthy communication [aischrologia:foul speaking, low and obscene speech] out of your mouth.
  • Eph. 5:3 - 5 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness [aischrotes: obscenity], nor foolish talking, nor jesting [eutrapelia: scurrility, ribaldry], which are not convenient [aneko proper, fitting]: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger [pornos: s/he who indulges in (Biblically) unlawful intercourse], nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. ["Unclean" is not about being in need of bathing, it is akathartos which means impure in thought and life-immoral. Being sexually pure takes more than abstaining from physical sexual misdeeds. Being sexually pure includes not filling your mind with lustful and debaucherous images and talk which, it turn, cause unclean thoughts-and desires. And watching and hearing such content in and as entertainment certainly does put impure thoughts in your mind.]
  • 1 Cor. 7:1-2 Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. ["Not to touch..." God is wise to rationalizations of man. "Touch" is haptomai {hap'-tom-ahee}; to touch; of carnal intercourse with a woman or cohabitation.]
  • Eph. 5:18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. [Since "drunk" is methusko {meth-oos'-ko}: to intoxicate; make drunk; to get drunk; become intoxicated, "wine" can be any intoxicating substance including illegal drugs or abuse of prescription drugs. The issue is do not abuse the body by intoxicating it [1 Cor. 6:19]. Though it is not a sin to drink, it is a sin to get drunk OR to influence to get drunk OR to drink in defiance such as underage drinking.]
  • 1 Cor. 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
  • 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 in prayer, with respect or reverence or in responsible discussion is in vain. That includes the popular three syllable sentence with His name trailing it AND the misuse of Jesus' name or title. So, trying to excuse such expressions with "I was talking TO God/Jesus/Christ when I said that" or "It's just words" or "I was acting" or "I was quoting" will not work with God.]

    ***Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry***
  • Jer. 37:9 This is what the LORD says: Do not deceive yourselves, thinking, 'The Babylonians [the destroyers from within] will surely leave us.' They will not!
  • 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, 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.)

    Letters to Juliet (2010) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - 100 out of 100
  • note noted

    Impudence/Hate (I) - 83 out of 100
  • one use of profanity
  • lies to manipulate the situation at hand
  • rude gesture

    Sexual Immorality (S) - 73 out of 100
  • art nudity
  • sexual harassment
  • woman wrapping her legs around a man
  • man fondling the breast of a female statue
  • cohabitation
  • female ogling at male in brief swimsuit, twice
  • anatomical reference

    Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 43 out of 100
  • drinking, repeatedly
  • booze, repeatedly
  • smoking, once

    Offense to God (O) - 60 out of 100
  • 12 uses of God's name in vain but all without the four letter expletive

    Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
  • 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 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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