In a way, the film that Observe and Report most resembles is Paul Thomas Anderson's Punch Drunk Love, in which a disturbed Adam Sandler finds a chance to love and be loved despite the lingering effects of his emotional turmoil. The comedy in Report is much cruder, but the personal journey of its central character is not too far removed from the protagonist of Anderson's film.

For many Christian viewers, however, the hint at a redemptive relationship in Ronnie's life will be too little, and far too late. It feels more like a tacked on subplot to gloss over the movie's darker themes, rather than something integral to Ronnie's development. The outrageous humor in the film will more likely generate disgust than laughs, but even those who find the film amusing may have trouble with Ronnie's outbursts—and the film's encouragement to enjoy his excessive, misguided reactions to other people.

Take it from one who's already observed this film and is here to report: Exercise extreme caution when deciding whether or not to watch this film.


Question? Concerns? Contact the writer at crosswalkchristian@verizon.net.

CAUTIONS:

  • Smoking/Drinking:  Mother drinks in front of her son and while alone, and speaks frankly of drunkenness; prescription drugs for bipolar disorder are taken by the person to whom they were prescribed, as well as by someone looking for a quick high; a woman says she's giving up liquor and is "switching to beer," which she says she can drink heavily without the same effects hard liquor has on her; drugs are injected and snorted.
  • Language/Profanity:  Lord's name taken in vain; crude talk about women and sex; forms of the "f" word used as a verb, adjective and exclamation; a man extends his middle finger; a flasher says lewd things to the women to whom he exposes himself.
  • Sex/Nudity:  Kissing; a flasher in a trench coat exposes himself and we see him only from behind at first; later, he appears to be masturbating in front of a woman (again, we see this from behind); we eventually see the man from the front, and a long chase through the mall includes several shots of the man's private parts; a woman's cleavage is visible; a man sleeps with a woman who vomits on the pillow; a mother says she used to sleep with her son's friends; mall cops use light pointer to analyze women in the mall; they spy on bare-breasted women in dressing rooms; a woman says she's a born again virgin and she wears a promise ring; later, a man says he intends to make the woman break her promise to God; a photo of a man's penis is shown as evidence in pursuit of a flasher; a man and woman have sex in a car.
  • Stealing:  A woman puts merchandise into her purse while shopping.
  • Violence:  Mall cops polish their guns and fire at targets at a shooting range; a mall cop Tasers a man; a man attacks several men who appear to be threatening him; the same man attacks several police officers and skateboarders; a man hits another man in the back of the head with a chair; a violent assault; a shooting and its bloody aftermath are shown.