THE SIXTH DAY
Marketing Violence to Teens
Starring: Arnold Swarzenegger, Robert
Duvall, Michael Rapaport, Tony
Goldwyn, Michael Rooker, &
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Audience: Teenagers & Adults
Runtime: 123 minutes
Distributor: Columbia Pictures/Sony
Director: Roger Spottiswoode
Executive Producer: David Coatsworth & Daniel
Producer: Mike Medavoy, Arnold
Swarzenegger & Jon Davison
Writer: Cormac Wibberly & Marianne
Address Comments To:Amy Pascal, President
John Calley, CEO
Sony Pictures Entertainment
10202 West Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232-3195
Phone: (310) 244-4000
Fax: (310) 244-2626
Web Page: www.spe.sony.com/
The makers of Arnold Swarzenegger’s new action movie, THE SIXTH DAY, including the big man himself, have touted their PG-13 movie as being less violent than Arnold’s usual thrillers. This is not true, however. The violence in THE SIXTH DAY, while definitely not as bloody, shares more affinity with the graphic violence in TOTAL RECALL than it does with the action violence in TRUE LIES, which was rated R more for its sexual content than for its violence. In the new movie, people take several neck-breaking falls, the camera shows a close-up of the lower half of a man’s leg shot off by laser gunfire and jokes are made about the gruesome, repeated death of a cloned human being. The graphic nature of these acts of violence should never appear in an R-rated movie, much less one that’s rated PG-13. After all the assurances in Washington, D.C. from Jack Valenti about how the ratings from his organization, the MPAA, protect parents and their children, it is absolutely unconscionable for this powerful media organization to give THE SIXTH DAY a PG-13 rating. Apparently, Mr. Valenti and the MPAA have learned nothing about the recent controversy regarding Hollywood’s marketing violence to children and teenagers. He and the MPAA have become co-conspirators.
In the movie’s story, set in the near future, Swarzenegger plays Adam Gibson, a happily married owner of a helicopter service. A botched human cloning experiment has led to a total ban on the cloning of human beings. Only pets and animals are now cloned. After Drucker, the rich owner of the biggest cloning firm, rents one of Adam’s copters, Adam returns home to find a clone of himself enjoying his own birthday party. Before he can enter the house, some people show up to kill him. Adam escapes, only to stumble on a conspiracy to clone human beings secretly. Of course, all this makes Adam, a veteran of the “Rainforest War,” doubly dangerous.
Besides its violent content, this story also may remind viewers of TOTAL RECALL because of its science fiction plot twists and its sense of mystery. Like Swarzenegger’s character in the earlier movie, for instance, Adam goes on a journey of self-discovery that leads to the uncovering of a secret conspiracy. These qualities help make THE SIXTH DAY one of Swarzenegger’s more exciting recent efforts.
They cannot overcome, however, not only gratuitous gruesome violence that creeps in from time to time, but also the movie’s anti-Christian elements. In the story, for example, a group of religious “zealots” (the movie’s description, not ours) protests all cloning, even to the point of committing murder and vandalism. At one point, Adam goes into a store that clones pets. Reluctantly, he wants to inquire there about cloning his family’s pet dog that just died. A protester tells Adam that God does not approve of cloning. Adam replies, “Then God shouldn’t have killed my dog.” Adam does these things even though he admits a couple times that he finds cloning disturbing, if not unnatural. Thus, there’s a bit of pagan moral relativism in Adam’s character.
Ultimately, however, THE SIXTH DAY takes a moral, biblical stance against the evil things that the owner of the cloning firm is doing. Despite the graphic violence depicted, the movie seems to value protecting human life, even life that has been cloned, Even so, the careless, graphic nature of some of the violence goes too far. This, and some gratuitous profanities & “f” words and crude sexual innuendoes, makes THE SIXTH DAY an unpleasant experience overall.
The makers of Arnold Swarzenegger’s THE SIXTH DAY, including the big man himself, have touted their PG-13 movie as being less violent than Arnold’s usual thrillers. This is not true, however. The violence in THE SIXTH DAY, while definitely not as bloody, shares close affinity with the graphic violence in Arnold’s R-rated TOTAL RECALL. In the new movie, people take several neck-breaking falls, the camera shows a close-up of the lower half of a man’s leg shot off by laser gunfire and jokes are made about the gruesome, repeated death of a cloned human being. Some gratuitous profanities and “f” words, sexual innuendoes and anti-Christian elements also spoil this science fiction thriller’s mild moral worldview