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Fighting [2009] [PG-13] - 5.5.5



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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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A man (Channing Tatum) who is hard on his luck is trying to make money any way he can. After being robbed while peddling stuff on the street, he fights the thieves and a man who's been watching (Terrence Howard) is convinced that he can be his meal ticket as a fighter. Also with Zulay Henaom, Michael Rivera, Flaco Navaja, Peter Tambakis and Luis Guzman. Directed by Dito Montiel. [1:45]

SEX/NUDITY 5 - A man and a woman kiss passionately, he reaches under her shirt (we see her bare back and hip), she pushes his hand away, they continue to kiss, and they lie back on a bed; we see them talking in bed later, he is not wearing a shirt and she fastens her pants when she gets up (sex is implied but not shown).
 A man and woman sit close to each other and nearly kiss but are interrupted by her mother. A woman approaches a man, caresses his arm and clings on him trying to convince him to pay attention to her (he walks away).
 A man tells a woman that he wants to kiss her (they do not kiss). A man and a woman flirt in several scenes. A man admires two women as they walk past him in a club scene. A man makes suggestive remarks to several women gathered in a convenience store. A man flirts with a woman and she flirts back (the man doesn't realize that the woman is a man).
 Women wear low-cut tops and dresses and short skirts that reveal cleavage and bare legs to the thigh in several scenes. We see men bare-chested in several scenes.

VIOLENCE/GORE 5 - A woman shoots a man in the ear and we hear the man scream and see him holding his ear (a small amount of blood is evident).
 Two men fight in a few pre-arranged bouts while other people gather around and watch: Many punches are landed in the head, face and body, there are kicks and body slams and chokeholds, and the fighters are shown with bloody faces in a couple of fights. In one fight a fighter is knocked unconscious when his head is slammed into a porcelain drinking fountain. In another fight scene the fighters' heads are slammed hard on the floor (we hear a crack) and a fighter is held in a chokehold until he passes out. In another fight scene two men break through construction materials and slam each other against plate glass windows (the glass cracks). We see a video of a boxing match and the fighters punch each other and one is knocked out.
 Two men on a street try to steal items that another man is trying to sell, the man attacks them and they fight with punches (we hear loud cracks when the punches land); he then runs away and hides in a subway bathroom.
 Two men steal a man's briefcase and run away on a crowded street. We read a newspaper article about a teen boy fighting his father and we hear later that the father never forgave the boy. A man shoves another man in a couple of scenes and they argue. A man punches a door in anger.
 A man tells another man, "You're a dead man." A man talks about someone kicking someone in the groin (using crude terms) and gouging out their eyes. A man talks about someone being bi-polar.
 A man yells at another man and a woman. A man yells at a woman on a street and tells her that people used to sell drugs in a building that is being demolished. We see a man sleeping on a park bench and he is embarrassed when he is discovered. A man says that a dog has a demon in it.

PROFANITY 5 - 1 F-word, 16 scatological terms, 11 anatomical terms, 8 mild obscenities, 1 derogatory term for African-Americans, name-calling (crooks, retarded, idiot, stupid), 3 religious exclamations. [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - People drink alcohol in a few club scenes, people drink alcohol at fight venues, and a man raises a shot glass with alcohol in it (we do not see him drink). Several people on a street smoke cigarettes. A man yells at a woman on a street and tells her that people used to sell drugs in a building that is being demolished.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Making a living, homelessness, gambling, disappointment, fighting for money, fate, hustling, dreams, strained family relationships, winning, losing, single parenting.

MESSAGE - Never give up and never give in. Doing what feels right is a better choice.

Special Keywords: S5 - V5 - P5 - 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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