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The world of movies


This week we start a new feature, one that will give our movie coverage breadth in addition to the depth of our particular reviews: a chart that surveys the movies that are currently showing in a theater near you. We will be alternating this movie listing, from week to week, with a similar chart for videos and DVDs.

The ratings from the movie industry have become notoriously unhelpful, so the movie chart packs in lots of information, not only to help you decide what, if anything, to see, but to give you a snapshot of the cultural landscape.

The &quotcautions" numbers are from, part of a very helpful venture on the web that includes (which quantifies and makes available a wide range of movie reviews) and (a guide to videos and DVDs). Kids-in-mind scrutinizes the movies to give objective assessments, on an increasing scale of 1-10, of the degree of sexual material, violence, and profanity that a particular movie might contain. They have given us permission to use their ratings. To get the details of any problematic material in a particular film, go to their website:

The &quotcritics" number is calculated from the total number of &quotstars" a set of mainstream critics have given the movie, averaged together and turned into a ranking of 1-10. This gives a rough assessment of the movie's artistic quality (the acting, plot, camera work, etc.).

But WORLD does not necessarily agree with those critics. For example, some secular critics praised The Gospel of John, while others panned it (usually, in the words of one of them, for &quotbeing too faithful to its source"), canceling each other out to result in a mediocre score of 5. Our WORLD review, though, found much more to commend. So the movies that we have reviewed are highlighted in red on the chart. Those reviews are now accessible on WORLD's blog site on the internet: