"The Work and the Glory: American Zion"
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Theatrical Release: Oct. 21, 2005
Director: Sterling Van Wagenen
Distributor: Excel Entertainment
Although the PG-13 rating will cause some to shy away, the primary reason for this rating is the violence depicted against
the central character of Joseph Smith. Other characters are also subjected to acts of violence, none of which are gratuitous
printing press torn apart, alcoholic beverage bottle broken over man's head, tar and feathering of two supporting characters,
tar and feathering of main character, hail and lightning storm where several horses and men fall, out of view is heard a man
being whipped, main and supporting characters shackled in a crude jail
"God's Army 2: States of Grace"
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Theatrical Release: Nov. 4, 2005
Director: Richard Dutcher
Distributor: Zion Films/Main Street Movie Co.
I found the storyline complex and thought-provoking. The screenplay was written well and the acting done well enough
that I empathized with the characters. The underlying theme is the redemptive power of the Savior. The final scene brought
genuine tears to my eyes.
Violence/Gore: 3 murders--the actual point of impacts not displayed but plenty of bloodstains on clothing and nearby objects,
1 suicide attempt showing its aftermath in brief images with bloodied knife and bloodied wrists, 1 vehicular/person collision
which shows the impact as a broken windshield looking through the driver's side door frame, two distinct confrontations between
gang members and others
Sex/Nudity: A few brief images of bikini-clad young women either playing beach volleyball or walking near the beach, implied
fornication where the participants are never shown together in a "bedroom scene" but both are shown remorseful afterwards.
Profanity: two utterances of the h-word referring to the place, two utterances of a young woman referring to herself as
a "whore", a gang member using the phrase "[name of deity]-freak!".
Additional Content Comments:
While evil acts are displayed, none of them are endorsed. Rather, they are used as teaching opportunities, one lesson
which is while the Savior's atonement is a real power, sin is always followed by a loss of the Spirit. I don't recall seeing
any alcohol or tobacco use, either. One of the central characters, a street preacher, refers to his alcoholism and trying
to overcome the "bottle".
With the adult-related themes it deals with, I don't recommend anyone under the younger teenage years viewing it. If
you're an older teenager or adult, however, and would like to understand a little better the injunction to mourn with those
that mourn and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, then I highly recommend it.