What You Need To Know:
(CC, L) Christian worldview; four obscenities; no violence; no sex; no nudity; and, nothing else objectionable.
GENRE: Family Comedy
Warner Bros. has been looking for a program to compliment its highly successful SEVENTH HEAVEN. In THE O’KEEFES, they have found a match made in heaven.
The O’Keefes, Harry and Ellie, are two PhD’s who homeschool their three children: two teenagers, Danny and Lauren; and, a younger son, Mark. Their morning starts out with pledge of allegiance, followed by a pledge to their family and then to their home school, with wonderful references to God. They speak nine languages, love learning and clearly love each other.
When they go to the library, the librarian is clearly put off by these children who love learning. When Lauren helps an attractive teenage girl in the library, Danny is smitten. Suddenly, he wants to go to high school, as does his sister.
Being honorable people, the O’Keefes parents keep their word to allow their teenage children to make this momentous decision. However the father is deeply afraid that they will be corrupted by popular culture. This “fish-out-of-water” setup provides the pilot episode for THE O’KEEFES as they venture into the world with their hopes, dreams, and values intact.
Judge Reinhold does an incredibly good job as Mr. O’Keefe. A Christian in real life, the audience can see that he empathizes with this role. The children, though well cast, are slightly over the top at times, suggesting that the director didn’t trust the comedy to flow from the dialogue and situations.
Nevertheless, this is a pro-family, Christian friendly, pro-home school program. It has heart, soul, and the Holy Spirit.
Looking at the edgy website for the television series, homeschooling groups have assumed that this is anti-home schooling. Quite the contrary! Judge Reinhold intended this to be pro-home schooling in showing the values of Christianity: love, compassion, knowledge, wisdom, and understanding triumphing over the chaos of the world around us. Judge Reinhold’s concerns are expressed in an article in this issue of MOVIEGUIDE®.
The home schooling community should applaud this program. Drama demands conflict, and if the O’KEEFE children had stayed at home, there would have been no drama. By venturing into the world of high school, they clearly show that Christians are more than conquerors in Christ.
Judge Reinhold himself was hurt to think that people would campaign against the program. It is not an expression of Christian virtue to pre-judge. It would have been easy for these groups to get a copy of the program and find out that the filmmakers are the side of the Good News, but their intention is to make their point through humor and drama, rather than preaching. They are to be congratulated.
Please address your comments to:
Jamie Kellner, President
WB Television Network
300 Television Plaza
Burbank, CA 91505
Phone: (818) 977-6640
SUMMARY: In THE O’KEEFES, Harry and Ellie homeschool their three children until their teenagers decide to go to public high school. A Christian in real life, Judge Reinhold does a great job as Mr. O’Keefe, and the program is a pro-family, Christian friendly, pro-home school program with heart, soul, and Holy Spirit.