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Lawless [2012] [R] - 7.8.7



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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 the true story of a family of brothers operating an illegal alcohol production and sale business during Prohibition. With Shia LaBeouf, Tom Hardy, Jessica Chastain, Jason Clarke, Dane Dehaan and Mia Wasikowska. Directed by John Hillcoat. [1:55]

SEX/NUDITY 7 - A man grabs a woman from behind, pushes his hand into her dress at the breast (part of her bare chest is revealed), draws a knife across her ribcage and makes a sexually suggestive remark (rape is implied by two men and we later see bruises on her arms and shoulders).
 A woman undresses (we see her bare back and shoulders), walks into a man's room (we see her bare breasts and abdomen to the hip while genitals are heavily shadowed), climbs into his bed and on top of him and they kiss (sex is implied); we see them lying in each other's arms later (her bare back is shown and his bare chest is visible).
 A fully nude woman (her bare breasts, abdomen, hip and legs are visible) sits on a newspaper on a bed in a room where a man primps in a mirror; the woman is whimpering and appears frightened (it is not clear what has happened and if it is sexual). A woman runs alongside a dark road at night while her dress hangs open and reveals her bare breasts as she screams. A woman wears a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage. A woman is shown wearing a nightgown that reveals cleavage and bare shoulders in a couple of scenes. A woman undresses behind a car and a man in the car watches her in the rear-view mirror (we see her bare shoulders and part of her back). A woman wears a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage. A shirtless man is shown in front of a mirror (we see his bare back and part of his abdomen and chest).
 A man kisses a woman. A woman dances seductively and invites a man to join her (he does not). A man and a woman flirt in several scenes. Women and girls are shown dancing during a celebration.
 A man makes a suggestive groan, moves toward a woman reclined next to him and they laugh (it is not clear whether sex takes place).
 A man leers at a woman and makes grunting noises. Two men admire a woman sitting across the room and her father glares at them. Two men drop their jaws and stare at a woman as she speaks with another man.
 Two men make sexually suggestive remarks to a woman. A man speaks to a woman and makes implications that she had been an exotic dancer when living in another place. A man speaks in front of a congregation in a church about "Lust of the flesh and lust of the eyes." During a church service, several women remove their shoes and their feet are bathed in basins of water by men; the women then carry the basins across the room where men remove their shoes and the women bathe their feet.

VIOLENCE/GORE 8 - A man grabs a man from behind and with a sharp implement saws the man's throat open from ear to ear; the wounded man grabs his throat, gags, presses his hands against the wound (we see a lot of bloods spurting from the open wound), falls to the ground gurgling and gagging and he's left for dead (we see him later with a bloody bandage on his throat and in the hospital). A man grabs a man from behind with his hand over his mouth, the man struggles and tries to call out until the first man snaps his neck (we hear a crunch) and drops his limp body to the ground.
 Three men with guns speed in a truck and open fire on police officers barricading a bridge: they shoot at each other and several men are struck and fall to the ground, one man is shot in the throat (blood sprays on the windshield of the truck and a lot of blood pumps out of the wound), another man is shot in the shoulder and falls to the ground (we see blood on the wound), he stands up and is shot several more times (we see bloody bullet holes open on his shirt; another man is shot in the leg and he falls to the ground. A man shoots another man twice, a third man stabs the wounded man in the back (we hear a crunch) and we see him fall over dead with the knife sticking out of his back and a lot of blood on his shirt. A man with a gun walks through a town, a car speeds toward him and he opens fire on the car hitting the driver who crashes into a pole; the gunman continues to shoot at the car and we see the passenger fall onto the ground outside the car (no blood is visible). A man shoots at another man and first hits his car and then hits the man in the abdomen (we see blood on his shirt when he falls to the ground).
 A man opens a door and we see another man inside holding a blood-soaked straight razor while standing in front of a man sitting in a chair with a gag in his mouth; we hear the restrained man scream and the man at the door is handed a bag that is dripping blood (it is implied that the bag contains the genitals of a man). A man, tied to a tree, has hot tar poured on his back (the man screams as the tar spreads) and we later see him covered with feathers and a sign on his chest that reads "bootlegger" (he is still alive).
 A man grabs a woman from behind, pushes his hand into her dress at the breast (part of her bare chest is revealed), draws a knife across her ribcage and makes a sexually suggestive remark (rape is implied by two men and we later see bruises on her arms and shoulders). A man with a gun enters a house and threatens another man inside; the gunman punches the man in the face (he is thrown back and into a wall), holds his gun on the man and strikes him in the mouth with it (we see a lot of blood on his nose and mouth and he spits and drools blood), punches the man again, throws him down a short flight of steps, punches him several more times in the face and then kicks him in the face (the man lies on the ground motionless and covered with blood). A man punches another man hard enough to break his collarbone (we hear it crack as the man screams and we see blood on his shirt). A man hits another man in the head with a shovel (the man falls to the ground motionless and could be dead). A man holds a knife on another man in a dark street and threatens him, and two other men come out of a building and tell the man to leave him alone; they argue briefly and one of the men punches the man with the knife in the face (he falls hard to the ground and we see him spit blood and blood gurgles from his mouth and nose). Two police officers deliver a summons when a man charges toward them and punches them hard in the face (they fall to the ground moaning); then he forces one to put a gasoline pump nozzle in his mouth and he is stopped before he pumps gas into the man's mouth. A man punches another man hard in the face, he falls to the floor and another man straddles him and holds a gun to his face; the other man fights with a fourth man, punches him hard in the face and we hear a loud crunch (probably his jaw broke), and we see a lot of blood pour from his mouth. A man punches another man in the face for blaming him for not protecting another man (we see blood on his nose). A man slaps another man in the face.
 A man is shown holding a woman's hand and she is holding a knife and struggling to free herself; we see that the man's hand is cut and bleeding. A man with a gun opens a door and finds a package that he opens and we see what looks like male genitals floating in liquid (he drops the jar and it shatters). We see the dead bodies of several men with bloody bullet holes visible lying on a street and several boys investigate; one boy picks a Tommy gun up off the ground and holds it in the air. We see a dead body in a box at a memorial party and the people at the party pour liquor in his mouth and put a cigarette in his lips. We see a man after a beating and he has bruises on his face and a bloodshot eye. We see a man with heavy stitches on a wound around his throat. A woman tends to a cut on a man's eyebrow after a fight with two other men.
 A man holds a gun to two other men, they are surrounded by several other men and walked to a large hole in the ground where they are forced to jump in; another man approaches and tells the gunman to shoot the two men in the hole (he does not). A man holds a gun to another man's face, and then presses his boot against his face (we see him with a bruise on his cheek and a bloody nose).
 Several armed men shoot into a shelter where two men and a woman are hiding (no one is struck). A man in a car chasing another car shoots at it and breaks out the back window (no one is injured). A man grabs another man by the arm startling him.
 A man puts a gun in the back of his waistband as he walks toward several officials waiting to speak to him. A man threatens another man and tells him that he will be pulling a cleaver out of the skull of another man if he comes around again.
 A man pokes another man and calls him names. A man behaves in a threatening manner to a woman, she tries to close her door and he puts his foot in the way and then makes an insulting remark. A man with a flaming stick chases another man away from his daughter. A man's shoe and pant leg catch fire when he gets too close to a camp fire (he yells, puts the flame out and is shown unharmed). A man falls into a frozen pond and we hear that he caught pneumonia.
 A man's voiceover talks about his brother being the only survivor of a war incident when his entire battalion drowned. A man's voiceover talks about his brother surviving an illness that killed their parents. We hear the voiceover of a man saying, "Nothing can kill us" and "We will never die" in several scenes. A man tells another man to "Get some [anatomical term deleted]." A man says, "They'd string us up from a tree." A man says about an elderly woman "She ain't right in the head." A man says that he had rickets as a kid and that is why his legs are malformed. People talk about "what he done to that boy" after a man murdered another man. A woman talks about a man having his "throat slit from ear to ear" and "lying in a pool of your own blood."
 Three boys stand in a pen in a barn with a pig, one boy tells another "Pull the trigger," the boy points a gun at the pig and says he cannot shoot it, and the other boy takes the gun and fires (we hear the pig squeal and we hear the gunshot but do not see the result). Two roosters fluff their feathers and bump their chests together briefly.
 Explosives are set in a still and we see a huge ball of flames erupt when they are detonated. Two men with axes break open barrels of liquor and destroy stills.
 A man chews tobacco and spits goo on the ground in several scenes. After drinking alcohol, a man coughs and perspires and appears uncomfortable, as if he is going to be sick.

PROFANITY 7 - About 25 F-words and its derivatives, 25 scatological terms, 10 anatomical terms, 39 mild obscenities, 2 derogatory terms for homosexuals, 1 derogatory term for African-Americans, 1 derogatory term for Native Americans, name-calling (moon shiners, bootleggers, crazies, country boy, genius, animalistic, house dog, stupid, runt of the litter, dumb, hick, outlaw, crazy, affected in the head, slick, hillbilly, not right in the head, lunatic), exclamations (shut up), 17 religious profanities, 3 religious exclamations. [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - A man hands a sheriff two cases of moonshine, people pour liquor in the mouth of a dead man, people at a memorial service drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes, two men make deliveries of illegally produced alcohol, a man sells alcohol to people attending a celebration, a man drinks alcohol and spits it out, a man drinks from a jar of liquor, a man guzzles liquor from a jar, and three men smoke and drink alcohol. A man smokes a cigar in many scenes throughout the movie, a man smokes cigarettes in several scenes throughout the movie, a woman smokes cigarettes in many scenes throughout the movie, a man is shown with a cigarette in his mouth in several scenes throughout the movie, and a man chews tobacco and spits brown goo on the ground in several scenes.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Bootlegging, moonshine, Prohibition, family, love, changing one's life for the better, murder, corruption, corrupt officials, mortality, rickets, legends, rape.

MESSAGE - A man is set apart by the distance he is prepared to go.

Special Keywords: S7 - V8 - P7 - MPAAR

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