Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"


Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Track Review

When Imagine Dragons exploded onto the music scene back in 2012, I remember thinking something along the lines of, Sounds like OneRepublic 2.0.

Eight years later, Imagine Dragons is the last band standing when it comes to approximating anything even close to rock in the mainstream music space. Rock, for lots of reasons, has retreated like steadily a melting glacier, a forgotten monolith of a dying age. Imagine Dragons is one of very few acts still putting out songs that can compete against the avalanche of rap and R&B that rules the charts these days.

Given that reality, I wasn't at all surprised to have the converse observation listening to OneRepublic's latest single, "Connection." It took me all of about five seconds to think, Sounds like Imagine Dragons 2.0. After all, OneRepublic's frontman, Ryan Tedder, is one of the most influential producers and songwriters around. And you can be sure he's been taking notes on Imagine Dragons' soaring success.

Operator, Can I Get a Connection?

"Connection" pairs a fat, throbbing bass line with Tedder's almost rapped lyrics, all of which leads up to an anthemic chorus. (A formula that pretty much describes every Imagine Dragons hit). Tedder and Co. throw down a deep, infectious synth-pop groove here, and it's almost impossible not to nod along while listening.

Like so many OneRepublic songs we've reviewed in the past, this one delivers a positive, redemptive message … with just one pesky caveat (as we'll see).

In a nutshell, the guys in OneRepublic know that society has a big problem: isolation. "These days, my waves get lost in the ocean," Tedder begins. "Seven billion swimmers, man, I'm going through the motions." A bit later, he adds, "Trying to connect, thinking maybe you could show me/If there's so many people here, then why am I so lonely?"

Tedder knows what he needs: "Sent up a flare, I need love and devotion." But meeting those relational needs isn't easy these days: "Real friends, good friends, hard to find, let's face it." And materialism isn't the answer either: "Buy the perfect home and there's a flood in the basement."

What's needed is relationship, a message the chorus trumpets with a plaintive, repeated plea: "Can I get a connection?"

And how might we make that connection? Tedder offers a couple of strategies. First, it means reconnecting with our past and the important people who shaped our lives back then: "Maybe I should try to find the old me/Take me to the place and the people that know me."

It also requires holding on to the values we were raised with, such as frugality in Tedder's case: "Made a couple dollars now, and I ain't tryna chase it/Kids from Oklahoma, man we don't waste it."

Finally, it means having a meaningful vision of the future, of where we're headed. "I'm just tryna paint the picture for me/Something I can give a d--n about at maybe 40/ … 'Cause there's so many people here to be so d--n lonely."

Those two mild profanities, by the way, constitute that caveat I mentioned above.

Staring at Our Hands

Though the song's lyrics themselves don't clearly deal with the issue of technology, the video definitely does. Performance shots of the band are intercut with Tedder wandering through a huge, white terminal, where almost everyone is walking around like zombies with a hand in front of their faces. They're not holding phones, but it's obvious that's what's being referenced here.

Into the midst of that crowd comes a woman, a dancer, who exuberantly bounds and glides through huge open space. She's as alive as the people staring at their hands seem to be stiffly robotic. Her facial expressions speak to passion, while those around her are trapped in passivity. They're unable to see her, unable to see anything other than their hands plastered right in front of their faces.

The video compliments the song's impassioned plea for real relationship. It suggests that when all we can see is our own "hands" in front of our faces, we don't really see anything. And despite the promise of connection that all our amazing technology brings, there's no substitute for really connecting—and perhaps reconnecting—with those who know and love us the best.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles



Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range







Top 20 iTunes track.

Record Label

Interscope, Mosely Music




June 26, 2018

On Video

Year Published



Adam R. Holz

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!