ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP)



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Entertainment Media Analysis Report

The Thin Red Line (1998), R
CAP Score: 36, CAP ID: 1.45

Thomas A. Carder
CAP President

Executive Summary / Commentary
Findings / Scoring

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AUTHOR'S COMMENT: Some have wondered why I analyze R-rated movies? One case and point (one of many): a schoolyard shooter watched "The Basketball Diaries" (R) at age 14. In this movie Leonardo DiCaprio shot six of his classmates. The shooter shot [more than six] classmates. I agree with the county attorney that kids don't just think up this behavior on their own. If the shooter's parents had known of the REAL content of the movie beforehand, not just the advertisements and secular reviews, maybe the shooter would not have seen it. Maybe. Maybe not. I am betting on `maybe.'

"The Thin Red Line" -- bloody at times, boring at times. In the vein of Speilberg's "Saving Private Ryan" comes almost three hours of "The Thin Red Line." Set in Melanesia, this representation of war in occupied third world countries was nothing more than more Hollywood fanfare. Maybe, like in "Titanic," there were some points of accuracy to give the movie an air of authenticity and credibility, but John Wayne was as able to adequately portray war without the gore and the foul language every two or three minutes. Yes, there was gore in WWII and probably so was the language (I kinda doubt it), but what is the need to put these things onscreen? Truth in expression? Realism? Hah! There are some realities in life that do not need to be publicized and pumped for dollars. Granted, our WWII heroes suffered the atrocities portrayed, but there was not one single element of fact or reality in this movie. None of the actors were soldiers in battle and the world is not at war. "The Thin Red Line" is a movie, no more, no less.

An extremely violent movie. An extremely foul movie. A long and sometimes boring movie. Much of the running time was taken up by the actors portraying soldiers thinking aloud or talking to God, in sometimes disrespectful, irreverent ways, I might add -- 23 uses of God's name in vain with the four letter expletive PLUS "Who are you to live in all these forms?" And though the third world population at the time wore almost no clothes, this movie was not file footage.

FINDINGS / SCORING: The Thin Red Line (1999) CAP Thermometers

Wanton Violence/Crime (W) lost intermediate level points eight times due to dogs eating the remains of men, graphic battle deaths, and deaths at the orders of a man seeking personal glory. Wanton Violence/Crime lost maximum level points six times due to graphic battle mutilation deaths, sequences of multiple graphic deaths, and sequences of mutilated bodies.

Impudence/Hate (I)(1) lost no intermediate points but lost maximum level points 14 times due to the use of the most foul word of the three/four letter word vocabulary.

Sex/Homosexuality (S) lost intermediate level points three times due to full third world nudity and foreplay with inappropriate touching in adult underwear. Sex/Homosexuality lost maximum level points three times due to scenes or sequences of multiple full third world nudity.

Drugs/Alcohol (D) lost maximum level points twice due to presentation of vast quantities of alcoholic beverages and consumption of it.

Offense to God (O)(2) lost intermediate level points twice due to vain use of Jesus' name and maximum level points 23 times due to the vain use of God's name with the four letter expletive.

Murder/Suicide (M)(3) lost intermediate level points twice due to murder and beating of prisoners.

Other examples of entertainment ignominy, each warranting the loss of the minimum point level, included

  • focus on a young girl's clothed chest, only her chest, for no reason at all.
  • adult underwear
  • foreplay and inappropriate touching
  • camera angle to focus viewer on private regions
  • partial nudity
  • brief nudity
  • injury gore
  • fist fighting
  • battle injury

    (1) As noted in CAP Special Report-001, "Investigation Area and Scoring Trend," of the six CAP Investigation Areas, Impudence/Hate was the strongest presence in all four movie classifications. It has a strong revelation about the entertainment media.

    (2) The use of the three/four letter word vocabulary without God's name is incorporated into the Impudence/Hate Investigation Area. The use of God's name with or without the three/four letter word vocabulary is incorporated into the Offense to God Investigation Area. There is no duplication. As required of the Holy Scriptures, unless God's name is used with reverence to His glory and praise, its use is considered in vain, whether literal or euphemistic.

    (3) Only portrayal of successful murder or suicide are incorporated into Murder/Suicide. Presentation of attempts to commit murder or suicide and deaths by police action or war are incorporated into Wanton Violence/Crime.

    Additional reviews of this movie may be located at "Movie Review Query Engine at Telerama."

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    In the name of Jesus:
    Lord, Master, Teacher, Savior, God.

    Thomas A. Carder
    ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP)

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