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Must Love Dogs [2005] [PG-13] - 6.2.4



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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
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» - ★★˝
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Diane Lane stars as Sarah, a woman who has recently gone through divorce and is finding it hard to get back to dating. Her family holds an intervention and her oldest sister (Elizabeth Perkins) signs Sarah up with an internet dating service, stating that anyone responding "must love dogs" -- although Sarah doesn't own a dog. After several odd and uncomfortable dates, she takes a borrowed dog to a park and meets a man (John Cusack) who's also divorced and finds dating awkward. Christopher Plummer, Dermot Mulroney, Stockard Channing and Ali Hills. Director Gary David Goldberg. [1:39]

SEX/NUDITY 6 - Two men sit in a dance club and watch scantily clad women dance around poles on a stage (we see cleavage, bare buttocks, abdomens and thighs). Women wear low-cut tops throughout the movie that reveal cleavage, a woman showers and we see her bare back, and a woman sits in a bathtub covered to the shoulders with bubbles.
 A man and a woman kiss passionately, they lie back on a bed, they caress each other, but they stop because neither of them has a condom. A man and a woman kiss, he kisses her neck, they lie back on a bed, and they wake up in bed together: he is bare-chested and she wears a robe, and he climbs out of bed wearing boxers.
 A boy talks about his mother having a man in her bed, whom she introduced as his "uncle," and another boy talks about his father having sex with lots of women. A man talks to another man about everyone wanting to sleep with the man's now ex-wife. A man says to a woman, "You'd look really good in handcuffs." A man talks about, "everyone in the city having sex tonight." A woman describes using Saran-Wrap as a condom while having sex with her husband. Two women describe a man as being "hot" in a few scenes. People talk about a woman having sex with many men and being promiscuous. A woman talks about being afraid of dating and having sex and whether or not she will be able to control herself. Women talk about a man's kissing abilities ("He was a terrible kisser").
 A man reaches his arms around a woman from the back and teaches her how to row a boat, then he kisses the back of her neck, and she turns around to face him and they kiss. A man and a woman also kiss in a few scenes. A man and a woman kiss, another man walks in to witness the kiss, becomes jealous and leaves.
 A 15-year-old boy shows up at a much older woman's home pursuing a relationship that they had begun on the Internet (they hug and kiss when he leaves). We see a woman on several dates with men, usually at restaurants or bars. A woman replies to a personal ad to meet a man at a bistro, but it turns out to be her father. A woman tries to fix a woman up with a younger man who also happens to be her first cousin. A woman confronts her sister a few times about having stolen her boyfriend when they were young.

VIOLENCE/GORE 2 - A boy is accidentally hit in the nose by a stick and has a very bloody nose. A woman yells at a man and slaps him in the face. A man and then a woman drive recklessly through streets trying to find an open drug store. A man and a woman arm-wrestle.

PROFANITY 4 - 7 sexual references, 3 scatological terms, 5 anatomical terms, 7 mild obscenities, name-calling (shallow), 1 religious profanity, 7 religious exclamations. [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - A woman drinks a lot of alcohol on a date, and a man drinks beer until he is very drunk and unable to walk. People are shown drinking alcohol in several scenes at bars and restaurants, people drink alcohol at a dinner party, and a man and a woman drink wine. A couple of men drink beer.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Love, romance, the love of your life, divorce, loneliness, dating after divorce, family intervention, lying, honesty, trust, family, death of a spouse, heartbreak, falling out of love, safe sex, exploration, attraction, humiliation, ethics, expectations, attention to detail, sadness, human frailty, parenthood, promiscuity, bad choices, depression, happiness, relationships, homosexuality, bisexuality, personal ads, dating services, internet dating services.

MESSAGE - Family can help get you through the most painful situations. Dating is hard, and love can be very hard to find so don't let it go once you have.

Special Keywords: S6 - V2 - P4 - 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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