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Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story [2006] [R] - 6.5.8



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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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Faux documentary about the efforts of a British troupe to film Laurence Sterne's classic, "The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentlemen," which is supposed to be unfilmable. The film mixes what is presumably actual footage of the final film, with the efforts of the actors. Egos, personal complications, disagreements, etc. challenge the production. With Steve Coogan, Rob Brydon, Jeremy Northam, James Fleet, Dylan Moran and Keeley Hawes. Directed by Michael Winterbottom. [1:34]

SEX/NUDITY 6 - A man and a woman have sex in several scenes: we see the man thrusting while lying on top of the woman and they both moan; no flesh is shown.
 We see a large replica of a woman's womb in a few scenes and a man is lowered inside it; in one of those scenes the man is nude and his genitals are visible briefly. A boy's penis is visible in a couple of scenes, and an infant's penis is visible in a couple of scenes. We see a magazine with pictures of nude women (bare breasts and abdomen are visible). A woman's bare belly is visible briefly during labor. A woman undresses and we see her bare buttocks and back. A man is bare-chested with a towel wrapped around his waist. Women wear low-cut dresses that reveal cleavage in many scenes. A man is bare-chested briefly while dressing.
 A man removes his clothes and climbs into bed with a woman, they kiss (his bare shoulders and chest are visible), he moves on top of her and they are shown waking up together the next morning.
 A man and a woman kiss in several scenes (in one of them the man kisses someone other than the woman he is having a relationship with).
 We see a bull mounting several cows while we hear that the bull is used for stud services; his penis is clearly visible. A calf nurses from its mother.
 There are a couple of descriptive terms used to describe a woman's genitals. A man talks about having a "sexual thing" for a woman and that he "covets" her. A woman talks about having traveled a great distance to have sex with a man. A man tells his girlfriend that he was flirting with another woman. A man asks another man if he had sex with a woman and if they did "anything weird." A woman talks to a man about the "state of his equipment." A man and a woman talk about "putting the candle out" while having sex. A man makes reference to a woman wanting a female doctor because she wouldn't want a man that "close to her..." -- suggesting her genitals.
 A man walks behind a woman and rubs his crotch against her buttocks. A woman pulls her head out from under a pregnant woman's night dress and talks about how dilated she is.

VIOLENCE/GORE 5 - A young boy urinates out an open window, and the window comes down pinching his genitals (we see blood on his penis); the boy screams and we hear that he was circumcised after the injury.
 We see an infant's blood-covered head protruding from between a woman's cloth-draped legs in a few scenes and in a couple of those scenes a man is using forceps to pull the baby out. We see a baby's broken nose after a forceps delivery (there is a bloody gash on the baby's nose). A woman is in labor in many scenes, and screams, thrashes and moans from the pain.
 A man describes using forceps to deliver a baby and demonstrates how he does it twice: the first time he demonstrates on another man's hands and the man's hands are badly cut (we see blood on them), and the second time he demonstrates on a melon and it is squished (it spurts). A man cuts his finger on a medical instrument.
 There are a few battle sequences where men shoot guns at each other and during one scene a man is knocked to the ground by an explosion, he yells and holds his crotch presumably having been struck by shrapnel; the same battle scene is shown again with gun and cannon fire and the injured man moans while being taken away on a stretcher.
 A woman in labor kicks a woman trying to help her deliver, and the woman falls back onto the floor and we are told she is injured on the leg. A man jumps up and down and grabs his crotch when hot chestnuts are put in his pants, and another man tries to help get the chestnuts out of his pants and apparently grabs his genitals instead.
 A man faints when he sees a baby being delivered. A man and a woman struggle over a pair of forceps.
 A woman describes a baby as being "black" suggesting that the baby is dying. A man reads to a boy about circumcision.
 A man throws food at a man.

PROFANITY 8 - 37 F-words, 10 sexual references, 7 scatological terms, 23 anatomical terms, 7 mild obscenities, 7 religious exclamations. [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - People are shown drinking wine, and people are shown drinking alcohol in a few scenes. Men smoke pipes and a man smokes a cigarette.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Methods of childbirth, midwives, phantom pregnancy, modern medicine, Pavlov's dog, ego, pedophilia, incest, status.

MESSAGE - The process of making movies, especially when a movie is being made about making a movie from what's supposed to be an unfilmable novel, is good fodder for satire.

Special Keywords: S6 - V5 - P8 - MPAAR

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