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Nocturnal Animals [2016] [R] - 7.8.10



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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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An art dealer (Amy Adams) receives a novel manuscript from her ex-husband and watches her own life unravel while reading the distressing story. Also with Jake Gyllenhaal, Michael Shannon, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Isla Fisher, Ellie Bamber, Armie Hammer, Karl Glusman, Robert Aramayo, Laura Linney and Michael Sheen. Directed by Tom Ford. [1:57]

SEX/NUDITY 7 - During an extended opening credits sequence we see several fully nude women dancing during an exhibit in an art gallery: The women are shown mostly from the front and we see bare breasts, abdomens, pubic regions, legs and a couple of women are shown from the side revealing their bare buttock while one women is shown fully nude from the back showing her full bare buttocks. Two fully nude women are seen lying on their stomach on platforms (they are still) and we see their bare backs and buttocks. A man sits on a toilet and we see his bare chest, abdomen, legs, a hip and a part of his pubic region (no genitals are seen). A teenage girl wears short shorts. A man is shown in a bathtub and we see his bare upper chest, then his chest, abdomen and hip. A woman wears a deeply cut dress that reveals cleavage and the bottoms of her breasts. A woman is shown bathing and we see her bare upper chest. A woman showers and we see her bare upper chest. Small photos of nude women's bodies hang on a wall in the background of a scene (we see bare breasts, buttocks, pubic region and panty covered buttocks). We see a stylized painting of a nude woman with the focus on her bare buttocks.
 A man and a woman are shown nude in bed together and we see the woman's bare back and buttocks and the man's bare hip and arms (sex is implied). A man and woman lie in bed together (he is bare-chested and she is wearing a camisole that reveals cleavage).
 A dead woman and a teen girl are shown fully nude on a sofa in the wilderness (we see one body from the back with bare back, buttocks and legs visible and the other with shoulders and legs shown).
 During an altercation on the side of the road two men grab a teen girl and a woman and touch them and thrust their hips toward them; one man straddles the woman while holding her on the ground.
 Men and women kiss on the cheeks in greeting. A man and a woman kiss goodbye on the cheeks. While driving a husband caresses his wife's shoulder and cheek and she smiles at him and holds his hand.
 We hear that a woman and a teen girl were raped before being murdered. A woman talks about having a gay husband. A woman talks about rubbing your genitals with a lubricant will reduce the need for vaginal rejuvenation. A man and a woman confess to being each other's first crush. A woman tells a man that he was her brother's first crush. A woman invites a man back to her apartment after a dinner date and he accepts.

VIOLENCE/GORE 8 - A teenage girl is held in a bed by a man and she screams and thrashes as he rapes her (we see a glimpse of her upper chest, and his bare back and shoulders).
 A man is shot in the back as he runs away, and then again at closer range to kill him (we do not see the second shot hit him; we do see bloody wounds). A man shoots another man twice and the other man hits the gunman with a fireplace poker (we see the shot man dead with large bloody wounds later and the other man with a badly bloodied eye and face). A wounded man lies on the ground and we hear his heartbeat slowing to a stop.
 A family drives on a dark road at night and are harassed by people in two other cars; one car tries to force them to pull over, pushes them off the road and cuts them off; the three people in that car force the family out of their car and they all argue and shove each other and one man is punched in the face (we see his bloody nose), and two of the men take the wife and teen daughter away in one of the cars leaving the husband with the third man. Two men argue and one man punches the other in the face; he fall sand hits his head on a metal bed frame (we see him OK later).
 A dead woman and a teen girl are shown nude on a sofa in the wilderness; one body is shown with a bloody wound on her head.
 A man with a gun threatens another man and the second man says, "It's fun to kill." A man presses a handgun into another man's forehead, his cheek and under his chin (he does not fire). A man kicks a door open and shoves a handcuffed man onto a cot. A man is forced by a stranger to drive on a dark and dirt road and is then forced out of the car and left in the wilderness. A man tries to stop a passing car as it speeds passed him.
 We hear that a woman was killed by a blow to the head and a teenage girl was suffocated; they were also both raped. We hear that a woman had an abortion and she says, "I will regret this." A man and a woman argue over a novel he has written and his writing in general. A man tells another man that he remembers raping the second man's wife. A man says of another man, "He ain't killed nobody yet."
 A dead animal with many arrows sticking out of its body is seen in an art gallery (looks like a cow). A small bird flies into a glass window and lies on the ground flapping its wing in distress. A fully nude woman dancing in an art gallery has what looks like a long scar across her abdomen. A woman gets a paper cut and we see her finger bleed before she puts it in her mouth to try to stop the bleeding.
 A man vomits twice (we hear gagging and retching but do not see goo). A man spits a gob of goo into another man's face (we see the goo). A man says that he is going to throw up but he does not. A man spits on the ground and we see spittle leave his mouth. A man coughs violently and spits (we see goo). We see a man wipe himself after using a toilet (we do not see excrement).

PROFANITY 10 - About 51 F-words and its derivatives, 2 obscene hand gestures, 1 sexual reference, 13 scatological terms, 12 anatomical terms, 9 mild obscenities, name-calling (jerks, liar, sexist, racist, weak, sensitive, crazy, bastard, sick, idiot), 7 religious profanities (GD), 10 religious exclamations (e.g. Jesus, God, Oh My God, Honest To God, Jesus Christ). [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - People are seen drinking cocktails at a party, two women drink cocktails at a restaurant, a man holds and drinks from a glass of liquor, a man smokes and drinks a bottle of beer, people drink beers and smoke cigarettes outside a bar, a woman drinks alcohol while waiting in a restaurant, and a woman drinks a glass of alcohol at home. A man smokes cigarettes in many scenes throughout the film and we learn that he has lung cancer.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Marriage, divorce, happiness, abortion, murder, rape, cancer, perfection, antiquated ideas, insecurity, absurdity, revenge, infidelity, justice.

MESSAGE - Life choices are very difficult.

Special Keywords: S7 - V8 - P10 - 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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