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Entertainment Media Analysis Report
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(2008), PG-13 [Hard PG-13*] (1hr 35min)

Final Score
Analysis Date
Date Posted
Influence Density
March 22, 2011
March 23, 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.

(2008), PG-13 [Hard PG-13*] ... is a complex and extended story

Cast/Crew Details Courtesy Internet Movie Database
Production (US): Clear Entertainment, Cloud Ten Pictures
Distribution (US): Cloud Ten Pictures
Director(s): Duane Crichton
Producer(s): Sherri Bennett, Tim Cherry, Emanuel 'Manny' Danelon, Philip Mellows, Pazz Neglia, Domenic Serafino, Wayne Thompson, André van Heerden
Screenplay: Michael Jackson
Music: Eric Cadesky
Production Design: Svjetlana Jaklenec
Art Direction: Brian Verhoog
Viewed on Cloud Ten Pictures Home Entertainment DVD

Ving Rhames as a pastor! Whodda thunk it? But he did a good job. A god job indeed. While the final CAP score of 56 places the content of this film equivalent to most hard PG-13 films in the comparative baseline database (55 to 67 out of 100), a Wanton violence/Crime investigation area score of zero certainly makes the violence/crime content R-equivalent (54 and below).

Blaze must die that John Henry James can live. This is a complex and extended story building up to that matter.

Save God! How can man be so arrogant as to think God must be saved? Well, the point is that God must be saved ... from our arrogance that distances us from Him. That is what convicted murderer Armstrong Cane (Ving Rhames) is going to do with the inner city parishioners of a depressed area church he attended as a child, the church his father pastored. (Now there is excellent type casting -- Ving Rhames with the character name of "Armstrong.")

Cane has been in a Federal penitentiary for 15 years for murder. As a much younger man the uncontrolled foolishness bound in Cane's heart drove him to kill a man for slapping him in front of his date. But while in prison, Armstrong became a pastor.

On his way to step into his church, the First Community Church of God for the first time in 15 years, Armstrong meets Young Norris Johns (Dwain Murphy) as Norris deals drugs in front of the church. A competitor, Bug (David Carty) was there to do "crowdation" on Norris -- the territory of drug boss Blaze (Dean McDermott). Stepping in (or maybe "stomping in") Pastor Cane explained in no uncertain terms to the boys, especially the competitor, that no one will deal drugs in or around church property.

Though Norris keeps trying to get out of dealing drugs, Blaze keeps pressuring him into continuing. Soon, Norris gets "popped" (arrested) for possession with intent to distribute illegal drugs. Pastor Cane, seeing more to Norris than meets the eye, bails him out and starts him on a path of righteousness. But the trials and tribulations along that path are many and each is incredibly difficult ... and dangerous. Dangerous not only to Norris but to Pastor Cane, Norris' grandmother Mavis (Barbara Barnes-Hopkins), his pregnant girlfriend Ashley (Genelle Williams) and her mother (Kathy Maloney) and anyone else connected with Norris. Lethally dangerous as Bug found out.

There is much more to the story, of course, but I am not going to spoil it any further should you decide, based on what this report reveals, that the film is fit for your audience. Please inspect with sobriety the brief discussions of content that follow and the detailed listing of findings in the Findings/Scoring section.

Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - Zero out of 100
As revealed above, Saving God is easily equivalent to many R-rated films in violence/crime. Some of the more intense instances of violence/crime included abduction, firearms held to heads, armed robbery GTA, multiple assaults, extensive fighting and beating. While these events are certainly a "way of life" for most inner city youth, seeing them in and as entertainment serves to embolden and perpetuate such chosen behaviors. Even God warned us of that in His Word [Prov. 16:29] 2000 years ago. But do we listen? Whether knowing it or not, four professional public health agencies listened. Jointly.

Impudence/Hate (I) - 51 out of 100
The euphemism for the human posterior was used three times but there were no other uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary nor of the most foul of the foul words. However, there were a number of matters of impudence of youth at parents. There were also threats to do harm and one use of masked profanity.

Sexual Immorality (S) - 75 out of 100
Though the sex act was unseen, the pregnancy of Ashley was clearly due to immoral sex with Norris. [1 Cor. 7:1-2] Also, Pastor Danny Christopher (Ricardo Chavira) makes booty calls to himself at a girl named Peaches (not credited) who was dressed to maximize her body plus speaking with lust of her at the sight. These are the only sexual matters noted.

God warns us of such desires. He, as Jesus, told men that to even look upon a woman with lust has committed adultery with her in his heart. [Matt. 5:28] And since "her" in "committed adultery with her" and "to lust after her" in Matt. 5:28 is autos meaning "him", "her", "he", "she", Matt. 5:28 applies to women ogling men as well.

Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 40 out of 100
There are many references to illegal drugs and drug dealing throughout the 95 minutes of this film. There are also a few instances of a woman smoking cigarettes.

Offense to God (O) - 68 out of 100
Pastor Christopher is noted saying that the Lord in the form of Danny Christopher has come to give a little bit of Salvation to Peaches as she lures him into the armed robbery. [Rom. 16:18]

Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
Though there was one murder, the view of the matter was simply a dead body on the ground after the fact. None of the mechanics of murder were seen. Thus, the matter was 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.


  • Prov. 16:29 A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good. [The issue is the violence, the 'way that is not good' no matter how "small" or "justified" the violence might seem, and its "leading" effect on the observer. "A violent man" ["man" here is enowsh {en-oshe"}: man (collective), mortal, person, mankind; contracted for iysh {eesh}: whosoever, each] can be any character of any age, any gender, human or not since the cinematic display is at the hands men and women, in the act of committing (demonstrating in the case of entertainment) violent behavior/action whether for good or evil or the violent behaviors/actions themselves. Such exposure can and does embolden the viewer into aggression, especially youth. It took years for American professional health community to finally affirm, probably without knowing it, that which God told us in 1 Cor. 15:33 below. See also Joint Statement on the Impact of Entertainment Violence on Children: Congressional Public Health Summit for more information. Further, God speaks darkly of violence 56 times in the Old and New Testament of the KJV.]
  • 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.]
  • Matt. 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
  • Rom. 16:18 For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people.
  • Matt. 5:22 But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment [krisis: accusation, trial]: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca [senseless, empty headed: a term of reproach among Jews at the time of Christ], shall be in danger of the council [any session or assembly or people deliberating or adjudicating]: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool [moros: impious, godless], shall be in danger of hell fire.

    ***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.)

    SAVING GOD: One Soul at a Time (2008) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - Zero out of 100
  • fighting, repeatedly
  • threats, repeatedly
  • dead body - murder victim
  • police bust violence
  • pursuit to do harm, repeatedly
  • abduction
  • trashing house to intimidate old woman to coerce her grandson
  • firearm to the face, repeatedly
  • armed robbery
  • grand theft - auto
  • physical assault, repeatedly
  • breaking and entering
  • defensive assault
  • beating
  • repeated appearances of firearms

    Impudence/Hate (I) - 51 out of 100
  • three uses of the euphemism for the human posterior
  • "What goes on between Ashley and me is none of your concern" by Norris to Ashley's mother
  • coercion
  • masked profanity
  • "Hello! I have my own private life here" by Ashley to her mother, wanting her mother to go away while she talks by phone to Norris
  • "...while mom is snooping around" from Ashley to Norris
  • "I'm leaving. With or without your support" by Ashley to her mother

    Sexual Immorality (S) - 75 out of 100
  • immoral sex leading to pregnancy with repeated references to it.
  • man ogling at a woman
  • pastor speaking with lust at view of woman
  • dressing to maximize the female form and/or skin exposure

    Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 40 out of 100
  • frequent references to illegal drugs and illegal drug activity
  • smoking, repeatedly
  • pressure by drug boss to continue dealing, repeatedly

    Offense to God (O) - 68 out of 100
  • a single abuse of God's name
  • calling others a "fool" [Matt. 5:22]
  • a pastor saying that the Lord in the form of him has come to give a little bit of Salvation to a buxom woman
  • "I don't want God..." by Ashley

    Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
    * no murder or suicide 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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