"Comical Rite of Passage"
What You Need To Know:
KEEPING UP WITH THE STEINS is an entertaining, funny and heartwarming comedy. Benjamin eventually gets some good advice from his grandfather and his rabbi. The movie contains a solid message about the need for forgiveness. Thus, it has a strong moral, theistic worldview with a redemptive theme. These positive aspects are marred, however, by some New Age and other pagan elements, including a skinny dipping scene and crude language. MOVIEGUIDE(r) advises extreme caution.
(BB, C, Pa, FR, LL, V, S, N, AA, M) Strong moral, theistic worldview from a modern Jewish perspective with a redemptive element about the power of and need for forgiveness, mitigated by some New Age pagan references and antinomian qualities of wishy-washy morality and theology; nine obscenities (including one "s" word) and two light exclamatory profanities, plus sounds of vomiting after boy secretly takes a big drink of alcohol with his friends; threats of violence during comical confrontation with a stranger and people fall into pool; euphemistic reference to masturbation in a joke, skinny dipping between unmarried couple and unmarried couple apparently live together; rear male nudity during skinny dipping and lots of female cleavage during skinny dipping scene; brief alcohol use and young teenage children secretly try big gulp of mixed alcohol but one gets sick and is admonished not to do it again; no smoking; and, envy and materialism, and New Age character says she believes in a "pan deity" and lumps in "the Great Spirit" with "Mother Earth" in a prayer.
KEEPING UP WITH THE STEINS is a comedy about Bar Mitzvah practices among rich Jewish families in America. The Bar Mitzvah (Bat Mitzvah for females) is a religious ritual for children who reach the age of 13, the age when they, instead of their parents, are now personally accountable to God for their actions. In America, the synagogue ritual is followed by a party. Among middle class and more well-to-do Jewish families, the parties can be quite extravagant, and so can the gifts.
KEEPING UP WITH THE STEINS focuses on the thoughts and feelings of Benjamin, who’s just about to turn 13. His father, a successful Hollywood agent, becomes wrapped up with the preparations for young Benjamin’s party. Benjamin, however, is most concerned about learning the Hebrew chant for the synagogue ritual. Benjamin’s father, Adam, also is overly concerned about holding a more extravagant Bar Mitzvah party than his former boss did with his son.
Complicating matters is that Benjamin and his mother, Joanne, have invited Adam’s own estranged father, Irwin, to the Bar Mitzvah festivities. Irwin is a free-spirited teacher living with a New Age vegetarian half his age. Benjamin invites Irwin a week early, in hopes that his father and grandfather will reunite before the Bar Mitzvah.
KEEPING UP WITH THE STEINS is an entertaining, funny and heartwarming comedy about a boy who’s not sure about this growing up business. Benjamin eventually gets some good advice from his grandfather and his rabbi. The movie contains a solid message about the need for forgiveness. Thus, it has a strong moral, theistic worldview with a redemptive theme. These positive aspects are marred, however, by some New Age and other pagan elements, including a skinny dipping scene and crude language. MOVIEGUIDE(r) advises extreme caution.
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