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Hail, Caesar! [2016] [PG-13] - 3.3.3



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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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The story of a Hollywood "fixer" (Josh Brolin) during the 1950s whose job it is to keep the celebrities who star in his studio's films in check and out of trouble. Also with George Clooney, Alden Ehrenreich, Ralph Fiennes, Scarlett Johansson, Tilda Swinton, Frances McDormand, Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Veronica Osorio and Heather Goldenhersh. Directed by Ethan & Joel Coen. [1:46]

SEX/NUDITY 3 - A woman wearing a skimpy outfit is shown pretending to churn butter while a man photographs her (we see cleavage and bare legs) and a police officer arriving on the scene makes reference to a "French postcard situation." Many women wearing swimsuits perform in an aquatic movie (cleavage is seen). Actors dressed in tattered garb representing slaves are seen shirtless. Women wear evening gowns that reveal cleavage.
 Many men playing sailors in a movie dance together; they hold each other upside down with one man's crotch at another man's chin and one dancer gets stuck between two other dancers and he is thrust up and down a couple of times (the scene is sexually suggestive). A woman wearing a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage sits on a man's desk and leans over to sign papers, and then asks him, "Is it hard squeezing it like that?" when he squeezes his notary stamp.
 A man talks to an older man about associating with a young woman or girl (insinuating an inappropriate relationship). A reference is made to "sodomy with a director." We are told that a woman is pregnant out of wedlock and a man tells her that she should get married because she is putting the studio in a difficult position. A man tells a woman who is unmarried and pregnant that she should have the baby, give it to someone else and then adopt it as if it not hers. A line recited by an actor includes "suckled by a she-wolf." Men playing sailors in a movie mope about going "8 months without a dame." A man talks about another man asking him to shave his back.

VIOLENCE/GORE 3 - A man on a movie set spikes a beverage in a goblet and another man drinks it, passes out and we see him being carried away by two other men. An unconscious man is carried into a house by another man. A woman's scarf becomes caught in movie projection equipment and we see and hear her chocking and gagging before a man reverses the machine and she is freed (whereupon she takes a long drag off her cigarette). A man slaps another man hard in the face several times as he tells him what he is going to do if he wants to not be found out.
 A man in a car at night sits outside and watches as flashes of light are seen through the window of a house; the man gets out of the car and goes into the house where he finds a man with a camera taking pictures of a woman wearing a skimpy outfit (please see the Sex/Nudity category for more details) and as the photographer leaves the other man slaps the woman in the face a couple of times while telling her that she is violating her studio contract.
 Several men in a boat row out from shore and then sit still in the water as a submarine surfaces, a man from the boat jumps onto the submarine and a dog from the boat jumps after him (the man catches the dog and drops a briefcase filled with money into the water).
 A woman performing in an aquatic movie yells and throws a costume crown at the conductor of the orchestra playing the accompanying music and the filming is halted. Four religious representatives and another man argue about the representation of Jesus and God in a movie being made. A woman argues with a man about not wanting to marry someone and who the father of her unborn child is.
 A statue depicting the crucifixion shows Jesus with trickles of blood on his head and face. A couple of scenes on a movie set show the feet of men being crucified (no blood is shown).
 An actor playing a Roman legionnaire pushes through many slaves to get water first and comes face to face with an actor playing Jesus. Actors on a western set shoot guns at each other and one actor does stunts on a horse; he is then chased on horseback by another rider shooting at him and the second rider is shot off his horse (no injuries are seen). Actors dressed as Roman legionnaires march as actors dressed in tattered garb (representing slaves) are whipped and forced to march; one slave collapses after being whipped. A woman in an aquatic movie swims and a large mouth (presumably a whale) closes around her (we see her uninjured later). A woman in an aquatic movie is raised out of the water and high into the air before diving back in and swimming with many other women. A man on a movie set jumps into a watering trough. An unconscious man wakes up from the sound of a vacuum cleaner and finds a room full of men smoking and talking about politics, economics and capitalism.
 A man talks to another man about his company having tested an H-bomb on the Bikini Atoll (we see a picture of the mushroom cloud). A man in a confessional speaks to a priest about having sinned by lying to his wife about smoking. References are made to Saul being struck down by a vision. A man asks a woman on a movie set if she is having gas again. A man tells another man, "We don't believe in Santa Claus." A reference is made to the "exploitation of screenwriters." A man prays about a decision he must make about his future and career. A man confesses to having "struck a movie star in anger."
 A man removes his teeth at a restaurant and talks to his date without any teeth in his mouth. A man makes a lasso out of a spaghetti noodle and lassoes his date's finger as she laughs. An actor is shown with a large scar on his face (presumably stage makeup).

PROFANITY 3 - 2 sexual references, 1 scatological term, 3 anatomical terms, 10 mild obscenities, name-calling (stick in the mud, backwater, God forsaken patch of desert, screwball, mob figure, louse, saps, swishes, bore, Roman schmo, kooks, cow posterior, bossy ol' woman, stooge), exclamations (oh gosh, shut-up, heck, golly, gee), 2 religious profanities (GD), 3 religious exclamations (Jesus Christ, God forsaken, Good Lord). [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - A man on a movie set spikes a beverage in a goblet and another man drinks it and passes out. A Mai Tai is shown on a table in a restaurant (the diner does not drink from it but says it is good), a man talks about another man and his "drinking jags," men playing sailors in a movie are seen with beer bottles on a bar set and one leans on the bar as if drunk, a man is shown with a glass of what could be whiskey, a man smokes a cigarette and holds a martini in his hand, and there are a couple of references to actors being "checked-in to dry out." A man smokes a cigarette and another man asks if he can bum one, a man in a restaurant offers another man a cigarette and he declines, a man smokes in a restaurant, several men in a room in a home are seen smoking cigarettes in a few scenes, a man on a movie set is shown with a cigar in his mouth (it does not appear to be lit), a pregnant woman smokes a cigarette, a woman smokes a cigarette in an editing room, a man smokes a pipe in a few scenes, a man smokes a cigarette in a restaurant, a woman smokes in an office, and a man talks about having lied to his wife about smoking cigarettes.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - 1950s Hollywood, studio fixers, contracts, oppressed people, communism, capitalism, history, economics, Palestine, crucifixion of Christ, Saul, faith, the press, family, kidnapping, ransom, life choices, truth, adoption, pregnancy out of wedlock, sodomy, facts vs. gossip.

MESSAGE - Better the devil you know.

Special Keywords: S3 - V3 - 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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