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Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP Ministry)
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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
A service to His little ones through you in His name by His Word
(2005), PG-13 [R-13*] (1hr 27min)
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(This section may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)
Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Conundrum Entertainment
Distribution (US): Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Fox Searchlight Pictures
Director(s): Barry W. Blaustein
Producer(s): Frank Clemens, Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly, Marc S. Fischer, Clemens Franek, Garrett Grant, John L. Jacobs, Tim Shriver, Bradley Thomas
Written by: Ricky Blitt
Cinematography/Camera: Mark Irwin
Music: Mark Mothersbaugh
Film Editing: George Folsey Jr.
Casting: Toni Cobb Brock, Nancy Foy
Production Design: Arlan Jay Vetter
Art Direction: John Frick
Viewed At: Driftwood Theater 6
The Ringer made me again thankful for the objectivity of the CAP analysis model. As I watched the film and annotated the findings, I wondered how this film could be a PG-13. It seemed, at least on the surface, to be a gentle, "feel good" movie. I reckoned it was the two uses of the most foul of the foul words. But when I finished crunching the numbers I found this film earned a final score of 54! That makes it a borderline R-13
The Ringer is another example of the unreliability of trailers and previews. In the trailer for The Ringer was a comment Jeffy made when physically close to Lynn: "Jeffy doesn't understand what is happening to his body." It wasn't in the cut of the film I saw. Actually, that is good. One less sexual innuendo. But it just "shows to go ya" that trailers/previews are not always true to the screen cut.
Steve Barker (Johnny Knozville) is hounded by his stogie-chewing uncle Gary (Brian Cox) to help him with some gambling debt. The goons are after Cox for $40,000.
Meanwhile, Steve is promoted. As a function of his new position, Steve's boss, Mr. Henderson (Brad Leland), ordered Steve to fire the janitor, Stavi (Luis Avalos), a widower with four kids. Feeling sorry for Stavi, Steve hires Stavi as groundskeeper for his apartment complex for $400 per week but only a promise of insurance or benefits. Alas, as Stavi mows the lawn, he loses three of his fingers. The hospital would be glad to reattach the fingers but for $26,000.
What to do! Stave's uncle is in hoc for $40,000 and Stavi needs $26,000 for surgery. Uncle Gary comes up with the solution.
Jimmy (Leonard Flowers) has struck it rich as the intellectually challenged six-time pentathelete. Gary's solution? Fix the Special Olympics so Steve could win the prize money which would more than cover Gary's gambling debt and the surgery bill for Stavi. Steve is athletically inclined. And has a smidgen of experience in acting. If Steve could pass himself off as intellectually challenged he could participate in the Special Olympics. So, Steve Baker becomes Jeffy Dahmor.
Reluctantly, Steve goes along with the gag though grumbling "This is so wrong" through most of the first half of the show. Even Steve's priest who hears Steve's guilt-ridden confession about fixing the Special Olympics lands a few well-targeted fists at Steve.
So, Steve calls on his high school sports and acting experience and, under the tutelage of Uncle Gary, rehearses appearing to be intellectually challenged. Steve is now prepared to play the game ... as Jeffy Dahmor.
I am not sanguine about the obvious making fun of the intellectually challenged in this film, but Tim Shriver, Chairman of the Special Olympics Board
Among the issues of assault on morality and decency are the many uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary, the two uses (though one was muffled) of the most foul of the foul words [Col. 3:8] and a number of lies [Rev. 21:8], thus the zero score in Impudence/Hate (I).
The plethora of uses of God's name in vain (though all without the four letter expletive) plus one abuse of prayer were expensive to the Offense to God (O) score. [Deut. 5:11]
The loss of most of the starting 100 points in Sexual Immorality (S) was due mainly to sexually-oriented toilet humor, a vulgar gesture and innuendo. A "gaggle" of men dancing in a steam room wearing only towels did not help the Sexual Immorality score either. In towels only? How is that an offense? Aside from the impure nature of it by God's Word, if you were to try doing that, say, in the main hall of a shopping mall, the sheriff or local police would explain why. "Well, the main hall of a shopping center is not the big screen!" Well, both are places are equally available to the public. [Eph. 5:3]
Regarding the MPAA's use of "drug reference" in their classification of this film as PG-13, I found one. I did, however, find a number of bars shown with people holding alcoholic beverages. Strange as it may seem, not in one case did I see anyone take a drink of booze, as if that is supposed to excuse exhibiting alcoholic beverages in a film targeted at youth. [Eph. 5:18]
Please consider inspecting closely the listing in the Findings/Scoring section of this report before deciding whether this film is fit for your family.
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.
***Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry***
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/
Wanton Violence/Crime (W)
Sexual Immorality (S)
Offense to God (O)
Christian Educators Association International
|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.|
|In the name of Jesus: |
Lord, Master, Teacher, Savior, God.
ChildCare Action Project (CAP): Christian Analysis of American Culture
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