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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
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(2007), PG [13-PG*] (1hr 24min)

Analysis Date
CAP Final Score
CAP Influence Density
June 23, 2007
62 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.

(2007), PG [13-PG*]

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Jerry Weintraub Productions, Virtual Studios, Warner Bros. Pictures
Distribution (US): Warner Bros. Pictures
Director(s): Andrew Fleming
Producer(s): Susan Ekins, Cherylanne Martin, Mark Vahradian, Ben Waisbren, Jerry Weintraub
Screenplay: Andrew Fleming, Tiffany Paulsen
Story: Tiffany Paulsen
Characters: Mildred Wirt Benson
Cinematography/Camera: Alexander Gruszynski
Music: Ralph Sall
Film Editing: Jeff Freeman
Casting: Pam Dixon
Production Design: Tony Fanning
Art Direction: Todd Cherniawsky
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6

Now that Nancy Drew  is out on video this report is of little use to you. But it is of use as a datapoint in the 25-year study by the CAP Ministry.

I did not expect Nancy Drew  to be a 13-PG but it is. "13-PG" means a PG film which earns a final score in the range of scores earned by PG-13 films in the comparative baseline database.

Regarding violence Nancy Drew  is a perfect example of the application of the CAP Rule of 1000. Not a single issue of violence in Nancy Drew  is equivalent to the examples of violence typically used in R-rated films but there were so many "lesser" examples of violence that the total envelope of violence is easily equivalent to the total envelope of some "lite" R-rated films. 4Indeed, because of so many examples of violations of His Word and Wishes for us this film was "lite" R-equivalent in not only violence but in matters of impudence and abuse of His name. However, it was solidly G- or PG-equivalent in everything else. Please be sure to note the additional discussion regarding the contribution of violence in and as entertainment in the Wanton Violence/Crime investigation area discussion below.

I remember the film did not "feel" like a 13-PG when I viewed it. But that "feel" is entirely subjective. The CAP analysis model is objective. The content determines the scoring. Period. As noted in the BEFORE You Read On... link above "messages", "plots" or artistic merit, i.e., "context", do not figure into a film's scoring at all. You, mom/dad, decide these matters for yourself. We just tell you about the content which the MPAA, advertisers, trailers, promoters, etc. can't or won't tell you whether the "context" tries to excuse the demonstration of sinful behavior or not.

From River Heights, teenage Nancy Drew (Emma Roberts - Julia Roberts' niece, Aquamarine and her widower father, attorney Carson (Tate Donovan) temporarily relocate to Los Angeles due to his job. But the teen sleuth cannot leave her sleuthing behind. Though Carson tries his best to convince Nancy to back off her private eye shenanigans and focus more on being a "normal teenager", Nancy is hooked. Her loyalty to her father is admirably strong but Nancy's addiction to solving mysteries is just too strong. Though Nancy tried earnestly to stop all the detective work, no matter what her father did Nancy would not leave sleuthing to the police.

Once in Los Angeles, Nancy is burdened with the extra pound that broke the "no-sleuthing" camel's back. The aging mansion which they rented was once owned by Hollywood star Dehlia Draycott (Laura Harring) who had drowned 25 years ago and with no reported surviving kin. The mystery is that Dehlia must have secretly had a daughter out of wedlock who stands to inherit buckets of money. Intrigued beyond her ability to resist snooping, Nancy is going to find out one way or another. Nancy thinks she found the secret daughter in Jane Brighton (Rachel Leigh Cook). The problem is someone doesn't want Nancy to discover the truth and is willing to kill to keep her from discovering it.

Nancy Drew  is claimed to be true to the original 1930s novels. I have not read any of the Drew books and cannot comment on that, but if the books portrayed the almost impeccable moral standards portrayed by Nancy Drew in this film, our children might do well to read them. And it is rare for Hollywood to portray the caliber of teen male with the strong moral fiber we see in Nancy's boyfriend, Ned Nickerson (Max Thieriot).

Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
I do not know of the degree of violence in the Drew books, but this film milks the violence/crime cow profusely: robbery; abduction of a teen girl (repeatedly); threat to do bodily harm; reckless endangerment (repeatedly); felony restraint of the teen girl; attempted murder by various means, including explosion; more. While each of the individual instances of violence/crime in Nancy Drew  may seem innocuous and tame, the additive effect of so many of them makes this film a somber concern. As revealed by our CAP Rule of 1000, "...for two movies of the same length which each earn the same number of "bads", the movie that presents many examples of lesser "bads" is indeed more negatively influential than the movie with only a few but more severe "bads." The biggest piece of reality regarding our desensitization to aberrant behaviors in and as entertainment comes in "We have become so morally numb by the narcotics of progressively graphic extremes in and as entertainment that what once was morally unacceptable has become morally invisible." -- TC The PG-rated Nancy Drew  may indeed be more negatively influential in violence than some R-rated films simply because of the plethora of "lesser" examples of "bads." And "examples" they are. [Prov. 16:29]

Impudence/Hate (I)
While there are a number of socially pointed conversational snippets, Nancy Drew  blurts out one use of the three/four letter word vocabulary. [Eph. 5:4] However, there are a number of instances of matters of impudence such as disobeying and deceiving a parent, lies and a request to lie, excusing wrongdoings with "Everyone does it", facial piercings, a father applauding teen licentious behavior and more. About the lies in Nancy Drew , many people don't seem to understand the gravity of lying. God is adamant about lying. So much so that He warns that the [unforgiven] liar has no place in Heaven. [Rev. 21:8. Prov. 19:5, Prov. 6:16 - 19] And He gives no condition or situation in which a "little white lie" is acceptable.

Sexual Immorality (S)
While seemingly free of sexually immoral behaviors, there are some behaviors demonstrated which are there to impart sexually oriented imagery and thinking: gamming (knowingly showing the underside of the upper thighs while sitting wearing a dress); inappropriate touch; exposure of the skin below the navel, threatening to expose that which follows; a baby by immoral sex. While there is absolutely nothing immoral about a baby, there is about sex out of wedlock. All of God's admonitions against sexually immoral behavior may be summed up as any sexual contact (including visual), conduct or activity outside of a monogamous heterosexual marriage. [1Ths. 4:1-5] Just because man has caused such sexual matters as in Nancy Drew  to become acceptable to man does not make it acceptable to God. If you don't believe me, ask Him.

Drugs/Alcohol (D)
The only instance of drugs and/or alcohol noted in the entire 84 minutes of the show was drugging to silence.

Offense to God (O)
God's name in vain was uttered several times, sometimes by an adolescent which compounds the sin of abusing God's name. Granted, each instance of His name being used in vain was without the four letter expletive, there were still each using His name in vain. [Deut. 5:11] In addition, in once case a projection was intended to be viewed as an unholy ghost.

Murder/Suicide (M)
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.


  • Prov. 16:29 A violent man entices his neighbor and leads him down a path that is not good. [The issue is the violence and its effect on an observer. "A violent man" can be a man, woman OR the men/women/characters demonstrating the violent behavior/action on the screen. Knowing of Prov. 16:29 you now know why violence, especially in and as entertainment, can embolden the viewer into aggression, especially youth. See also Joint Statement on the Impact of Entertainment Violence on Children Congressional Public Health Summit. Further, God speaks darkly of violence 56 times in the Old and New Testament of the KJV. And see 1 Cor. 15:33 below.]
  • Eph. 5:4 Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.
  • Rev. 21:8 But the [unforgiven] fearful [deilos {di-los'}; timid, cowardly], and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
  • Prov. 19:5 A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape.
  • Prov. 6:16 - 19 There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes [the impudent, arrogant], a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers. [Twice in this one passage lying is condemned.]
  • 1Ths. 4:1-5 Finally, brothers, we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living. Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more. For you know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his [or her] own body [which includes control of drives, touching, seeking, lusting (even after images), promiscuity, etc.] in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God; [Be master of your body and urges, not a slave to them or a seeker of any manner of sexually-oriented imagery or behavior outside of a monogamous heterosexual marriage.]
  • 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 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.]

    ***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.)

    Nancy Drew (2007) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
  • robbery
  • abduction of a teen girl, repeatedly
  • felony restraint of a teen girl, repeatedly
  • attempted murder by vehicle
  • attempted murder by explosives
  • threat to do bodily harm, repeatedly
  • reckless endangerment, repeatedly
  • reckless driving to pursue
  • action violence, repeatedly
  • vehicular assault
  • additional abduction
  • physical assault
  • physical assault of a teen girl
  • threat of a teen girl with a firearm

    Impudence/Hate (I)
  • one use of the three/four letter word vocabulary
  • disobeying a parent, repeatedly
  • massive tattoos
  • request to lie
  • lie
  • deceiving a parent
  • excusing wrongdoings with "Everyone does it"
  • facial piercing
  • parent applauding licentious behavior of daughter

    Sexual Immorality (S)
  • gamming, repeatedly
  • exposure of below navel skin threatening to expose that which follows
  • immoral sex resulting in pregnancy

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • drugging to control

    Offense to God (O)
  • six sues of God's name in vain, all without the four letter expletive, five times by a teen
  • image intended to be viewed as ghost

    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 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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