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Snow Falling on Cedars



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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-13

Based on David Guterson's acclaimed 1994 novel, "Snow Falling on Cedars" follows a small town reporter (Ethan Hawke) as he covers a murder trial, and in the interim learns about war, racism, unrequited love and journalistic integrity. Also with James Cromwell, Richard Jenkins, James Rebhorn, Sam Shepard, Eric Thal, Zeljko Ivanek, Max von Sydow, Youki Kudoh and Rick Yune. [2:06]

SEX/NUDITY 4 - A little sexual innuendo and a few scenes in which a boy and girl kiss, sometimes passionately. A man and woman kiss passionately and have intercourse in the shower, and a newlywed couple have intercourse with a little moaning (in both scenes we see only their bare arms and shoulders). A man and woman kiss and it's implied they have intercourse (we don't see any nudity). We see a corpse's bare backside.

VIOLENCE/GORE 6 - A man's arm is severed; we see a close-up of the bloody stump as doctors try to reattach the arm. We see a bloody, gashed skull with a little brain matter exposed; a man pokes his finger in the hole and touches the brain. A man hits another in the head with the butt of a gun and kills him. There's killing with guns and grenades in WWII battle scenes. We see foam coming out of a man's mouth and nose and a close-up of a bloody cut on a hand. We see a slightly bloody corpse in the snow, a corpse pulled from the water in a fishing net and a few corpses washed ashore (some are dismembered and we see body parts partially buried in the sand).

PROFANITY 5 - One F-word, a few anatomical and scatological references, an insult and numerous racial slurs. [profanity glossary]

DISCUSSION TOPICS - WWII, murder, cultural differences, war camps, refugees, pack-mentality, the legal system, discovering one's sexuality, relationships, honesty, journalism, unrequited love, family.

MESSAGE - Do what you know is right and people will eventually commend you for it.

Special Keywords: S4 - V6 - P5 - 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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