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The Danish Girl [2015] [R] - 8.4.1



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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


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Based on a true story: In 1926 a Copenhagen artist (Alicia Vikander) paints a portrait of her husband, a famous landscape painter (Eddie Redmayne), dressed as a woman. The man then becomes enamored with dressing as a female and eventually he has gender reassignment surgery. Still married, the transgender woman encounters an old male friend (Matthias Schoenaerts), which leads to a love triangle. Also with Ben Whishaw, Amber Heard, Sebastian Koch, Emerald Fennell and Adrian Schiller. Directed by Tom Hooper. Several lines of dialogue are in French with no translation. [2:00]

SEX/NUDITY 8 - A wife is shown nude in bed except for a sheet over her pubic area; her husband sits on the bed and his wife unbuttons his shirt, rubs his chest, and he gasps and grasps her thigh and they lie down (we see her in full frontal nudity, including a brief glimpse of pubic hair, along with her bare buttocks); the next morning, she wonders if they made a baby. A wife (she's clothed) kisses her husband's bare stomach in his open shirt in bed, then moves down to perform oral sex under the covers and he calls out, "No!" (she apologizes and the scene ends). A wife looks at her shirtless husband halfway under covers in bed and leans over so that we see her bare breasts and nipples; she then sits astride his groin in bed and the scene ends. A wife removes her stockings, puts her back to the camera and lifts her skirt to reveal bare buttocks; she gets onto the bed and he rolls on top of her, shirtless (we see his bare buttocks and lower back) and they kiss passionately as the scene ends.
 A man rushes out of his apartment and into a nearby ballet wardrobe building where he stands in front of a full-length mirror, strips to long boxer shorts and looks at himself; he pulls down the boxers, grips his penis, and places it back between his legs pressing his thighs together and bending his knees slightly, rubbing his fingertips around his chest while staring into the mirror (we see full frontal nudity including genitals, bare back, bare legs from ankles to buttocks and one bare buttock).
 A transgender woman dressed as a man attends a Paris peep show where in an extended sequence, she watches a nude woman in a parlor on the other side of a glass window and copies her movements as she caresses areas of her body that include face, throat, shoulders, breasts, and thighs (we also see bare buttocks, navel, and shaved upper-pubic area); the woman rises from a couch slightly, runs her hand down to her groin that is below the frame and the transgender woman gasps and bends down and away from the window, looking fearful.
 A transgender woman, encouraged by her wife, attends a large party, where men and women stare at her and a gay man attempts to talk to her, but she walks away; the man takes her to another large room and they sit on a stone bench where he kisses her passionately twice and her nose begins to bleed profusely as her wife enters the area and begins to cry at the kiss, but rushes forward at the sight of blood and helps her out of the party. A man kisses a transgender woman on the cheek at a railway station and the transgender woman kisses her wife on the lips. A man at a party kisses a woman who is wearing a long dress and rubs one of her thighs, making the dress rise a few inches off the floor.
 A transgender woman visits a gay male friend in his home and they kiss for several seconds; the gay man reaches into the transgender woman's groin area, calls out the transgender woman's male name, the transgender woman calls out, No!" and the gay man says "Yes!" as the transgender woman cries and runs out of the house.
 An art gallery in three scenes features an array of nude portraits: we see four females in full frontal nudity, including bare breasts and hair at the pubic area while a man standing in front of another portrait obscures a full frontal, male nudity portrait (we see a small part of the side of a penis). A man reads a study called "The Scientific Study of Sexual Immorality," and he sees a drawing of three sets of buttocks, thighs apparently spread with arrows pointing at what looks like small testicles (no penises are in the drawings). In an outdoor scene at night, we see a statue of two nude cherubim (no genitals are apparent). In a woman artist's home and later in an art gallery we see a large sketchy portrait of a nude woman sitting on a couch with her bare back, buttocks, and thighs to the camera (we see a small breast without a nipple, the feet are in short-heeled pumps and the face is that of the woman's husband). Several sketches and paintings depict a woman's husband as a woman. A party scene includes a few women wearing low-cut, floor length dresses that reveal a little cleavage.
 A wife asks her husband to put on stockings and pumps to help pose for an unfinished portrait of a ballerina; he rolls his trousers up to the knees, puts stockings over his hairy legs, puts on the shoes, and his wife gives him a long ballet dress with a wide tutu that he refuses to wear, but holds it against his body and smiles as he runs his fingertips over the fabric; another woman enters, kisses him on the cheek leaving red lipstick marks and calls the man "Lili" (he smiles and blushes). In a wig shop, a wife and her husband kiss and giggle as they choose a woman's wig, and dress, and pumps for him to wear to a party as a joke. A husband and his wife lie side by side asleep and are both wearing long female nightgowns. When a transgender woman and her wife go to bed at night, they keep a thin curtain hung between them from the ceiling along the length of the bed.
 Dressed as a man, a transgender woman tells a doctor that she has nosebleeds and stomach cramping on a monthly basis; the camera cuts to the transgender woman lying on her back, nude on a medical table and she has a large pad covering the groin area of her body as a radiation machine is aimed at the groin for several seconds.
 Two gay men stare for several seconds at other men at a party and at a transgender woman. A transgender woman's wife sees her with a gay man and later, the transgender woman tells her wife that she is only friends with the man, because she is now anatomically female and no longer male; she says the formerly male husband is dead now and that the wife should get a life of her own. A transgender woman admits to her wife that she has been dating a man and the wife asks if she is in love with him; the transgender woman says that she is only in love with the wife.
 Two men ask a transgender woman, "Are you a boy or a girl?" and the woman walks away, but the men attack her verbally and physically (please see the Violence/Gore category for more details). A transgender woman tells a man and her wife that marriage is something everyone should have, implying that she wants to stay married to the woman. A woman tells a man that she is still a transgender woman's wife, declining to have a dinner date with the man. A husband tells his wife that as a boy, a male friend kissed him, but then his father chased the friend away; the wife asks the adult friend about it and he replies that the first man was wearing an apron that day and "looked so pretty that I kissed him" and the father chased the friend out of the house. A painter tells her male portrait subject to sit still, adding that there are pleasures associated with a man submitting to a woman; he flinches and says that he is glad her husband is not present, because the husband makes him nervous. A wife wearing a long white gown and long silk robe tells her husband, "I have my period," meaning they cannot have sex and he says, "I'm sorry" and she asks, "Are you?" he replies, "I am and you know I am." A man says that he was always pretty. A ballerina asks a male friend, "You've only ever had eyes for one woman, when are you going to give me a god-child?" A man tells a doctor that he has been having sex less often with his wife since he began dressing as a woman and feeling that he is a woman. A woman tells friends that the first time she kissed her husband-to-be, it was strangely like kissing herself. A transgender woman is dressed as a man and her wife tells her not to become the woman again; the transgender woman looks embarrassed and hurt. A woman at a party points out two gay men she knows across the room, and states that homosexuals can have sex with two people at once. After a man's wife paints several portraits of him as a woman, he tells her that he has always been a woman trapped in a man's body. A transgender woman in a hospital sees two pregnant women with large bellies and tells the second pregnant woman (and later a doctor) that she wants to have children one day; the doctor kisses her hand and says that perhaps one day she will. A woman says that men are corrupted by the ankles of women in dresses with hems ending just above the ankles.

VIOLENCE/GORE 4 - Two men taunt and name-call a transgender woman who is wearing a suit and a female wig; she punches one of the men in the jaw and he punches her in the face, felling her and they all stumble into a gazebo where the two men beat the woman for several seconds, punching her in the face and kicking her in the stomach when she falls; they leave her with a bloody face and mouth, groaning.
 A transgender woman enters a hospital to complete her transition surgery (vaginal construction) and the morning after surgery her wife and their male friend arrive to visit when a doctor tells the wife that the transgender person lost a lot of blood during surgery and has a high fever and the woman and the man enter the hospital room to find the patient shivering and restless, pale, with dark circles under the eyes and blue lips; the patient pants heavily and sweats as the wife sponges off her forehead with a wet towel. A transgender woman has a nosebleed while wearing a dress (please see the Sex/Nudity category for more details) and we see the dress later with a dark stain on it. A man falls off his chair grimacing with stomach cramps and the camera cuts to a medical office where a doctor tells the man that he has a chemical imbalance making him think that he is a woman; the doctor subjects the man to a strong radiation treatment aimed at his groin area and the doctor tells the man's wife that he is insane to believe that he is a woman. A character closes her eyes and dies as a woman cries and shouts and the scene ends.
 Doctors diagnose a man as schizophrenic or "insane" and one doctor prescribes drilling two holes in the top of his head. A doctor rushes out of his office and leaves a man sitting there where he looks at the doctor's notes on the desk, sees that he is to be institutionalized, and escapes out of a window to the street; we see three doctors, with one holding a straight jacket, as the scene ends.
 A wife and her husband (who's a transgender woman) argue in several scenes with the wife crying hard several times. A wife runs out into the rain and sits on a folding chair on the sidewalk near the street, looking sad as rain pours down on her.
 A transgender woman tells a friend, "God made me this way, but the doctor is curing me of the disease that was my disguise (as a man)"; she admits that she considered killing her male self, but did not, because she would have been killing her female self too. A transgender woman argues with her crying wife, who insists that she become a male husband again, and the transgender woman says that she cannot do so. A man scheduled for sex reassignment surgery (removal of male organs) panics in his hospital bed where straps hold him to the bed at his upper and lower chest when his wife enters the room to find him wearing an oxygen mask (please see the Substance Use category for more details) and he cries, then smiles as he tells his surgeon, "This is not my body, doctor. Please take it away" (we do not see the surgery or recovery). A woman berates her now-female spouse for taking prescription pills too often (please see the Substance Use category for more details); the transgender woman yells back that she knows what she is doing and is ready for part two of her transition surgery "inserting the vagina," according to the doctor (we do not see the pre-op or the procedure). After transition surgery, a transgender woman whispers, "I am entirely myself." A transgender woman says that she dreamed of being a new baby and her mother calling her "Lili." A caption states that an artist painted portraits of a transgender woman until she (artist) died.

PROFANITY 1 - 1 sexual reference, 2 anatomical term, 1 anatomical hand gesture, name-calling (insane, stupid, slut, perversion, depravity, absurd, shameless, slut, provincial), 1 religious exclamation (My God). [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - A transgender woman accepts two bottles of prescription pills from her wife and we later see her swallow two pills from one of the bottles, a transgender woman swallows a pill at home, a transgender woman in a hospital receives oxygen in one scene and anesthetic in another scene through a mask, and a nurse gives a patient an injection in one arm in a long shot. Men and women drink glasses of champagne at gallery showings, four café and restaurant scenes show a man and a woman at a table with glasses of wine at their place settings, a man and a woman drink some wine in a couple of scenes, a woman pours wine for herself and a male guest and they both drink, a woman drinks a glass of wine at home, and dozens of men and women drink from glasses of wine as they also smoke cigarettes. Dozens of men and women smoke cigarettes at home as well as at parties and gallery openings and while painting along with in cafes and in large restaurants and also on sidewalks and in alleys, some women smoke cigarettes with cigarette holders at home and at parties, and a man in a café holds a large cigar (he does not light it).

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Gender dysphoria, personal appearance, confusion, secrets, bullying, gender reassignment surgery, LBGTQ people, courage, sacrifice, relationships, marriage, love, misunderstandings, making choices, loss, death, acceptance.

MESSAGE - Einar Wegener brought the topic of transgender individuals to world attention.

Special Keywords: S8 - V4 - P1 - MPAAR

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