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Unlike the MPAA we do not assign one inscrutable rating based on age, but 3 objective ratings for SEX/NUDITY, VIOLENCE/GORE and PROFANITY on a scale of 0 to 10, from lowest to highest, depending on quantity and context.

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Sex & Nudity
Violence & Gore
1 to 10

MPAA Rating: PG-13

In this portrait of a tumultuous mother-daughter relationship, a woman with big dreams moves herself and her daughter from a small Wisconsin town to Beverly Hills. With Susan Sarandon, Natalie Portman, Eileen Ryan, Ray Baker, John Diehl, Shawn Hatosy, Bonnie Bedelia, Caroline Aaron, Hart Bochner, Ashley Johnson, Mia Korf, Heather McComb, Faran Tahir, Alicia Leigh Willis and Rachel Wilson. [1:54]

SEX/NUDITY 4 - Several instances of sexual innuendo (including a veiled reference to cunnilingus and teens mildly talking about sexual encounters) and a kiss (also, in one scene, a man kisses a woman's fingers in a close-up shot). A boy talks about girls' breasts and a boy tells a girl he wants to kiss her (he describes the act in detail). A girl tells a boy to undress; he does, down to his boxers, and then they embrace as the scene ends. We see a woman in several cleavage-revealing outfits, many people in bathing suits at the beach, a woman wearing only a sweatshirt (we glimpse her panties a couple of times) and a photo of a girl wearing an undershirt and panties.

VIOLENCE/GORE 2 - We briefly see two kids shoving each other. A slap and a scuffle. A girl repeatedly slams her purse against a wall in anger. We learn someone died and see people crying at the funeral. Several scenes of yelling; a man walks toward a woman while he's yelling at her and another man holds him back.

PROFANITY 3 - An anatomical reference, a few scatological references, some mild obscenities (plus some wordplay with the word "dam") and an insult. [profanity glossary]

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Mother-daughter relationships, abandonment, sacrifice, neurotic behavior, death of a loved one, teen smoking, teen sexuality.

MESSAGE - Mothers can be irrational and unpredictable, but in the end they'll do anything for their daughters; parents have to let their adult children make their own decisions, no matter how painful that may be.

Special Keywords: S4 - V2 - P3 - MPAAPG-13

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A CAVEAT: We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and some of our early standards were not as stringent as they are now. We therefore need to revisit many older reviews, especially those written prior to 1998 or so; please keep this in mind if you're consulting a review from that period. While we plan to revisit and correct older reviews our resources are limited and it is a slow, time-consuming process.

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