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Clay Pigeons



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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: R

Joaquin Phoenix gets tangled in a web of betrayal and murder in this black comedy/thriller. Also with Vince Vaughn, Janeane Garafolo, Georgina Cates, Scott Wilson, Gregory Sporleder, Vince Vieluf, Phil Morris, Joseph D. Reitman, Nikki Arlyn and Monica Moench.

SEX/NUDITY 6 - Sexual innuendo and kissing, sometimes passionately. Two scenes, in which a naked couple has intercourse with lots of movement and sound; in both, we see the woman's bare breasts, and in one, we see the woman's bare buttocks. In one scene, we see a woman's bare back and upper chest as she moves and moans sexually (it's unclear whether a man is caressing a woman or they are having intercourse). We hear a man and woman having sex on TV. A woman briefly caresses a man's clothed behind and crotch. In several scenes, we see a scantily clad woman (she wears cleavage-revealing tops, short skirts, bras and underwear); in one scene, she wears an open robe and we see part of her breast. We see a man in his boxer shorts.

VIOLENCE/GORE 7 - A man shoots himself, and we see his dead, bloody body. A woman shoots another woman (a little blood is seen). A man is about to stab a woman, but the scene ends before we see him do it. A car -- with a dead person inside -- is pushed off a cliff; we see it crash at the bottom, then explode. A man throws a wrapped-up corpse in a lake. We see a naked corpse floating facedown in water, and in different scenes we see three covered corpses (their discolored feet are visible) and one very bloody corpse. We see a scene from the movie "Alien" in which an alien bursts out of a man's stomach (with lots of blood). A man purposely cuts his finger and licks blood from it. A man steps in a large, gooey puddle of blood; we also see a bloody knife and a soap dish with lots of blood in it. A man slaps a woman. Threatening with guns and knives and one scuffle.

PROFANITY 10 - About 60 F-words, several anatomical references, many scatological references and lots of mild obscenities and insults. [profanity glossary]

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Murder, suicide, infidelity, betrayal, the FBI.

MESSAGE - Telling the truth from the very beginning of a bad situation is the best way to stay out of trouble.

Special Keywords: S6 - V7 - P10 - MPAAR

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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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