SPARTAN Add To My Top 10

Cynical Stoicism Prevails

Content -2
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Release Date: March 12, 2004

Starring: Val Kilmer, Derek Luke, Tia Texada, William H. Macy, Ed O’Neill, and Kristen Bell

Genre: Spy Thriller

Audience: Older teenagers and adults

Rating: R

Runtime: 106 minutes

Address Comments To:

Barry M. Meyer, Chairman/CEO
Warner Bros., Inc.
4000 Warner Blvd.
Burbank, CA 91522-0001
Phone: (818) 954-6000
Website: www.movies.warnerbros.com

Content:

(H, B, C, PC, AP, LLL, VV, S, N, A, D, M) Cynical, conspiratorial humanist worldview with some positive moral elements and allegorical Christian references that eventually seem to be stillborn and politically-correct undercurrents with apparent anti-American feelings about the government’s fight against terrorism and a cynical view of presidential politics that may be a slam against President George Bush; about 31 to 35 obscenities, one strong profanity, and one light profanity; strong borderline action violence includes some rough martial arts moves against people, point blank shootings with blood, apparent suicide, man’s arm deliberately broken, woman roughed up and threatened, and man punches girl he’s trying to rescue in stomach to stop her screaming when she’s scared; discussion of white slave trade of blonde-haired Americans by evil Arabs, U.S. president who commits adultery, and boyfriend of President’s daughter; upper male nudity; alcohol use and brief discussion about First Lady being an alcoholic; smoking; and, kidnapping, white slave trade, government corruption, and parents neglect daughter.

GENRE: Spy Thriller

Summary:

SPARTAN takes moviegoers into the world of covert operations, in a tale about the kidnapping of a United States president’s daughter, starring Val Kilmer. Despite some allegorical Christian references, SPARTAN retains a depressingly cynical and conspiratorial humanist worldview, with some very strong foul language, strong borderline action violence, and brief, but mostly light, sexual references.

Review:

SPARTAN takes moviegoers into the world of covert operations, in a rough tale about the kidnapping of a United States president’s daughter. Like the MISSION IMPOSSIBLE movies, it has some positive Christian allegorical elements, but, regrettably, fails to capitalize fully on them. Ultimately, the movie seems to have a cynical, conspiratorial view of American covert operations and the political reasons behind them.

The movie opens with Robert Scott, a career military man involved in covert ops, training a black Marine named Curtis, who wants to join the elite espionage corps. When Scott is recruited to find the President’s missing daughter, Laura, his superiors pair him with Curtis.

The naiveté of his partner and the political ambitions of his superiors complicate the mission, which may involve an Arab white slavery ring that unknowingly picked up Laura, who, on a whim, has died her hair blonde. The clandestine mission comes to an abrupt end when the news media issues reports of the girl’s death.

Scott returns to his quiet life as a rural landowner, until Curtis convinces him that there’s some kind of conspiracy and that the President’s daughter may still be alive, but may be abandoned by the political handlers surrounding the President. The conspiracy eventually forces Scott underground. Relying on his survival techniques and his stoic military training, Scott secretly travels to the Middle East to rescue the girl and bring her home. If, that is, the girl still wants to come home.

Corruption in high places is the main theme of this sometimes exciting movie. The motives of the characters are a little too murky at times, although there are some allegorical Christian references associated with the movie’s stoic hero. These references don’t lead to a positive redemptive conclusion, however. In the last shot of the movie, the hero, Scott, seems to have taken on a rather cynical attitude about what he has just experienced.

Taken as a whole, then, the movie’s worldview is a cynical, conspiratorial one that seems a bit humanist. It also seems to contain politically correct undercurrents with apparent anti-American feelings about the government’s fight against terrorism and a cynical view of presidential politics that may be a slam against President George Bush.

SPARTAN also has some very strong foul language, strong borderline action violence with point blank shootings and rough martial arts action, and references to Arabian slave traders and presidential infidelity. SPARTAN warrants extreme caution.

In Brief:

SPARTAN takes moviegoers into the world of covert operations. Val Kilmer stars as Robert Scott, a stoic military officer involved in covert ops, who is recruited to find a United States president’s missing daughter. The search and rescue mission comes to an abrupt end when the news media reports the girl’s death. Scott learns, however, that the girl may still be alive, the victim of an Arabian white slave trade. Relying on his survival techniques and his stoic military training, Scott secretly travels to the Middle East to rescue the girl and bring her home, if, that is, the girl still wants to come home.



Corruption in high places is the main theme of this sometimes exciting movie. The motives of the characters are a little too murky at times, although there are some allegorical Christian references associated with the movie’s stoic hero. These references don’t lead to a positive redemptive conclusion, however. Instead, the movie’s worldview seems to be a cynical humanist one, with some politically correct anti-American undertones. The movie also contains very strong foul language, strong borderline action violence, and brief, but mostly light, sexual references. SPARTAN warrants extreme caution.