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The Importance of Being Earnest



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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

Two eligible bachelors in 1890's England are desperate to marry the loves of their lives, but both women have determined that the only man they could ever consider marrying would have to be named Ernest. Thus, the stage is set for everything to go awry, when all end up together in the country and confused identities threaten to spoil their romantic pursuits. Based on Oscar Wilde's play. With Rupert Everett, Reese Witherspoon, Colin Firth, Judi Dench and Frances O'Connor. [1:38]

SEX/NUDITY 3 - A man and woman kiss romantically, then passionately, and lie down on the ground. A man and woman kiss romantically a few times. A woman kisses a man's face, head and hair passionately. A woman nearly kisses a man several times. A man kisses a woman's hand, and a man kisses a woman's hands. There is a cabaret scene where Can-Can dancers lift their skirts and flash their ruffled panties and their tight bodices reveal cleavage. We see a picture of a fully nude woman in a book. Men and women flirt with each other in several scenes. A man reads a love letter from his beloved. A young woman daydreams about being rescued by a knight. There are discussions of love, romance, passion, and love making throughout the movie.

VIOLENCE/GORE 2 - A man grabs a man around the throat and shakes him, two men struggle over a serving dish, two men struggle over some flowers. A woman gets a tattoo on her buttock (we see her hike up her dress and she lies on her stomach), and a man gets a tattoo on his buttock (we see him lying on his stomach). A man holds an urn that we are told is filled with a dead person's ashes. A woman wears a fox stole and we see the dead fox's startled looking, rather crossed eyes. A man is chased through an alley by two men; he leaps onto the side of a moving carriage and startles the woman inside. A man and woman faint. A man is chased again by the same two men. A woman chases a woman through a graveyard. Two men are splashed in the face with mud.

PROFANITY 1 - 1 mild obscenity and some insults. [profanity glossary]

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Trust, truth, love, gambling, dishonesty, anxiety, debt, creditors, confidence, the British class system, arranged marriages, ignorance, abandonment, devotion, pessimism, passion, celibacy.

MESSAGE - The very essence of romance is uncertainty.

(Note: People smoke cigarettes and drink alcohol.)

Special Keywords: S3 - V2 - P1 - MPAAPG

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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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