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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

An L.A. detective (Al Pacino), in trouble with Internal Affairs over allegations that he planted evidence, is sent to Nightmute, Alaska, with his partner (Martin Donovan) to solve a murder case that has everybody stumped. After suffering from insomnia for several days due to the perpetual midnight sun, the detective is no longer certain where the lines between right, wrong, truth and dishonesty lie. Robin Williams co-stars as a suspected murderer. Also with Hilary Swank and Nicky Katt. [1:52]

SEX/NUDITY 5 - A man talks about kissing a young woman and becoming aroused. We see a fully nude female corpse on a table during an autopsy (glimpses of bare breasts and some pubic hair). A young woman wears an outfit that reveals some cleavage and her bare thighs. A young man remarks about his girlfriend "wanting him every night," a man asks another man if he had sex with a young woman, and a man tells an off-color joke.

VIOLENCE/GORE 6 - A dead, decaying dog is shown a couple of times: one time the body is shot with a gun and the shooter digs into its body with a knife and fishes out the bullet (we see bloody rubber gloves and hear squishy sounds). A man is shot in the chest: we see this scene several times from different angles and with different amounts of blood and detail (some show the man's bloody face, some show a spurt of blood when he is hit by the bullet. A man is shot in the abdomen (we see blood on his mouth, he falls into water and slowly sinks), another man is shot in the abdomen (he grimaces and collapses and we see some blood on his face), and a man is shot in the leg and falls to the ground. There are very quick flashes of a young woman being hit hard in the face and we hear her scream. There are discussions throughout the movie of details of crimes including murders and mutilations -- one includes gruesome details of a boy's abuse, torture and murder. Two men struggle, one is punched and kicked repeatedly while lying on the ground, and one is hit in the head with a glass jar. A woman is hit hard in the head and she falls down to the ground. We see a dead man lying on an autopsy table being wrapped by paper sheets. There are autopsy photos of a woman with a very bruised and battered face and body. A man and woman are trapped in a shack while another man shoots a shotgun into the structure, repeatedly. A man is chased through a crowd, over a fence, across a rooftop, along a pier and across floating timbers; one man falls through the timbers and is trapped under water for some time struggling to find a way out. What looks like blood seeping into magnified cloth fibers is seen repeatedly, we see a bloody stain on a shirt sleeve, blood drips on some cloth and we see a dropper full of blood, a woman has a bloody nose and mouth, and we see a young woman's bloody mouth and nose (the blood seems to be dried). A man shoves another man, pins him against a pole by pressing on his neck, and then holds a gun to his head. There is a tense scene where a man is chased through very thick fog. A man vomits in an alley; we hear the gagging. A man plays chicken with an oncoming truck and swerves at the last moment. A woman is nearly hit by a car as it starts up and the driver is not paying attention. A driver swerves after he imagines that he is going to run into an oncoming truck. A man imagines that he sees a man who is dead (several times). A man has an old scar on his neck and we hear that he was cut with a knife. People argue in a few scenes.

PROFANITY 9 - 48 F-words, 1 obscene hand gesture, 17 scatological terms, 2 sexual references, 13 anatomical terms, 9 mild obscenities, 3 religious exclamations, 3 religious profanities. [profanity glossary]

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Insomnia and sleep deprivation, murder, police abuse, cover-ups, planting evidence, credibility, betrayal, the end justifies the means, loneliness, domestic abuse, police investigations, infidelity, child murderers, pragmatism, conscience.

MESSAGE - Doing the wrong thing will always come back to haunt you even if your motives are just. Life is so important, how can it be so fragile?

(Note: People are shown drinking alcohol and smoking.)

Special Keywords: S5 - V6 - P9 - 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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