WASHINGTON (August 21, 1998) -- The 1-800-311-4CCC movie line reviews Wrongfully Accused for the week of August 21-27. Also included on the toll-free line is a review of Napoleon, this week's suggested home video for family viewing.
The 800 movie review line is a project of the Catholic Communication Campaign (CCC).
The August 21-27 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.
- Air Bud: Golden Receiver -- The U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-I -- general patronage. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is G -- general audiences. Air Bud: Golden Receiver brings back last summer's talented canine basketball star, dresses him up in football gear and sends him in to win the state championship for an inept junior high school team. Though the story is predictable and the pace pedestrian, the antics of its four-legged star will delight juveniles of all ages.
- The Avengers -- Because of stylized violence, sexual innuendo and an instance of rough language, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. The Avengers is a leaden updating of the 1960s TV series with unflappable British operatives Ralph Fiennes and Uma Thurman battling international villain Sean Connery. The agents are smug and charmless while the villain proves to be embarrassingly buffoonish.
- Wrongfully Accused -- Because of slapstick violence as well as sexual situations and innuendo, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. Wrongfully Accused stars Leslie Nielson in an uneven spoof of "The Fugitive" and other action thrillers but its goofy assortment of sight gags, crazy props and silly situations prove only fitfully amusing.
- Dance with Me -- Because of romantic complications and unmarried sexual relationships, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG -- parental guidance suggested. Dance with Me offers overblown musical romance with a Latin beat as a Cuban youth comes to Texas to meet the man he's certain is his father, then falls for a dance studio instructor while helping restart her professional dancing career. The thinly developed story relies on increasingly elaborate dance routines to provide the interest missing from stereotyped situations and characters.
- Dead Man on Campus -- Because of its jokey treatment of recreational drug use, underage drinking and promiscuity as well as much rough language and profanity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is O -- morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Dead Man on Campus is a failed comedy about two college freshmen seeking to drive a depressed roommate into committing suicide. Its lighthearted depictions of substance abuse, meaningless casual sex and troubled students make this a dreary exercise in anti-social humor.
- Blade -- Because of excessive violence, much profanity and constant rough language, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is O -- morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Blade is an ultraviolent horror fantasy adapted from the comic strip about three heavily armed humans battling a city of vampires. The gory, stomach-turning proceedings wallow in scenes of brutality, butchery and bloodshed.
The family video of the week is 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 a 1997 Australian picture in which the frisky city puppy of the title is accidentally carried aloft by hot-air balloons, lands in the wilds of the outback and has many wondrous adventures while making his way home with the help of some animal friends. The colorful live-action photography includes a few scary moments, but its talking animals and exotic Australian wildlife will appeal especially to children.
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 movie 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."