WASHINGTON (October 10, 1997) -- Napoleon, which tells the tale of an adventuresome talking dog, is on the 1-800-311-4CCC movie review line for October 10-16. Also included on the toll-free line is a review of Kidnapped, this week's suggested home video for family viewing.
The 800 movie review line is funded by the Catholic Communication Campaign (CCC).
The October 10-16 list includes the following theater releases and their classifications according to moral suitability. Movies are evaluated according to artistic merit and moral suitability by the U.S. Bishops' Office for Film and Broadcasting.
- Napoleon -- The U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-I -- general patronage. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is G -- general audiences. Napoleon is the story of a young puppy in Sydney, Australia, who's carried away by hot-air balloons into the outback where he learns the wonders and dangers of the wild while making his way home with the help of some friendly animals. Though there are some scary moments along the way, the talking puppy's adventures with an exotic variety of Australian wildlife will be especially appealing to young children and animal lovers.
- RocketMan -- Because of mild menace and bathroom humor, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG -- parental guidance suggested. RocketMan is an unamusing comedy about an annoyingly infantile computer freak who saves the day while onboard a space mission to Mars that goes awry. Clumsy pratfalls and rude humor keep the dull proceedings decidedly earthbound.
- Seven Years in Tibet -- Because of brief battlefield violence and a gory mountaineering accident, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. Seven Years in Tibet is a bland, fact-based drama in which Nazi mountain climber Brad Pitt escapes British internment in the Himalayas by walking 1500 miles to Tibet where he undergoes a spiritual transformation while tutoring the young Dalai Lama. The movie's scenic vistas are visually stunning but the lead character's inner regeneration is dramatically unconvincing.
- Most Wanted -- Because of intermittent violence, fleeting nudity, occasional profanity and some rough language, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Most Wanted is a muddled thriller in which fugitive Marine Keenen Ivory Wayans tries to prove his innocence when power-mad general Jon Voight frames him for the assassination of the President's wife. The convoluted conspiracy plot loses all credibility as the story grows increasingly far-fetched with endless chase scenes.
- Kiss the Girls -- Because of some vicious violence, frequent rough language and a few instances of profanity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-IV -- adults, with reservations. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. In the lurid thriller, Kiss the Girls, a serial killer abducts a number of women, one of whom escapes to aid police psychologist Morgan Freeman in hunting down the psycho and freeing his captives. The formula police story is moderately suspenseful but quite brutal in its depiction of life-and-death confrontations.
- Gang Related -- Because of recurring violence, brief nudity, much profanity and non-stop rough language, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is O -- morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Gang Related is a shoddy crime story in which corrupt cops Tupac Shakur and James Belushi unwittingly murder a federal drug agent, then try to frame homeless drunk Dennis Quaid for what they did. The lamely scripted result lacks any real suspense in its repugnant depiction of murderous, foul-mouthed cops.
The family video of the week is Kidnapped. The U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-I -- general patronage. Not rated by the Motion Picture Association of America. In Robert Louis Stevenson's classic adventure, Kidnapped, an 18th-century Scottish youth is done out of his inheritance by a villainous uncle, then is badly treated as a ship's cabin boy until rescued by a dashing rebel fighting English rule. The 1960 Disney production portrays the boy's plight and eventual triumph in rousing fashion, though the action gets a bit intense at times.
The classifications are A-I - general patronage; A-II - adults and adolescents; A-III - adults; A-IV - adults, with reservations (an A-IV classification designates problematic films that, while not morally offensive in themselves, require caution and some analysis and explanation as a safeguard against wrong interpretations and false conclusions); O - morally offensive.
The movie reviews are produced by the U.S. Catholic Conference (USCC) Office for Film and Broadcasting, which each week provides full length movies reviews, brief capsules and film classifications of new theater releases.
Reviewers include Henry Herx, Director, and Gerri Pare, Associate Director, of the Film and Broadcasting Office, which is funded by the CCC.
The capsule reviews are available on the World Wide Web. They can be found on two sites: http://www.nccbuscc.org and http://www.CatholicDigest.org/stops/movies/movies1.html.
Full-length reviews of the above and other movies are available through America Online at the Catholic News Service site on AOL, and can be accessed by AOL members using the keyword, "CNS."