Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

21 Grams

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Profanity:Very strong language
Nudity/Sex:Very explicit sexual references and situation
Alcohol/Drugs:Smoking, drinking, drug use
Violence/Scariness:Graphic violence, including shooting
Diversity Issues:None
Movie Release Date:2003
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Profanity: Very strong language
Nudity/Sex: Very explicit sexual references and situation
Alcohol/Drugs: Smoking, drinking, drug use
Violence/Scariness: Graphic violence, including shooting
Diversity Issues: None
Movie Release Date: 2003

In “21 Grams,” a terrible collision shatters more than the lives of three people. It shatters the very narrative of the story itself.


YouTube Preview Image
Director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu conveys the fractured disorientation of the three characters with clusters of brief scenes that act as a mosaic, gradually revealing what happened in that devastating moment and how it affected the events and emotions and that followed, even the impact on the very identities of the people involved.

Paul (Sean Penn) is dying. His heart is failing. His wife wants to find a way to have his child. Jack (Benicio Del Toro) is struggling. He has come out of prison with a fierce new religious faith that has his wife and children a little uneasy. Christina (Naomi Watts) is happy. She has overcome a substance abuse problem and is living happily with her husband and daughters.

Then a corner is turned. A driver — maybe in too much of a hurry to get to a birthday party, maybe having had a drink — hits three pedestrians. Lives are lost. Another life is restored. Another is devastated. Is there a way to go on?

Inarritu uses a hand-held camera and directs with a simple, intimate, very pure feeling similar in style to the Dogma 95 movies. Penn gives one of the most sensitive performances of his career. He usually plays characters who are not as smart as he is, but here he is completely convincing as a math professor and he shows us an extraordinary range of subtle and complex emotions. Watts and Del Toro are also outstanding.

Parents should know that the film includes tragic deaths and brutal violence with gory wounds. There are explicit sexual references and situations, including nudity and a brief glimpse of a porno film. Characters drink, smoke, and use drugs. A character attempts suicide. There is very strong language.

Families who see this movie should talk about why Inarritu chose to tell the story this way. How would its impact have been different if told in a more conventional structure? Why is the film called “21 Grams?” What do you think of Jack’s wife’s comment that his duty is to his family? Why do the different characters say, “Life goes on?”

Families who appreciate this film will also appreciate Amores Perros from the same director. They may also like more mainstream films on related subjects, like Return to Me and Bounce.

Previous Posts

Interview: Rachel Hendrix of "77 Chances"
Rachel Hendrix plays Mac in the faith-based romantic film "77 Chances." It's a "Groundhog Day"-style story about a young man who feels lost ...

posted 3:39:15pm Aug. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Tribute: Oliver Sacks
We mourn the passing of neurologist and writer Oliver Sacks, who illuminated the workings of the brain and set an example of grace and compassion that extended to the way he shared his thoughts about his terminal diagnosis. I first learned ...

posted 9:17:46am Aug. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Three Hundred Year-Old Actors Are Still Working
Scott Feinberg talked to three actors with a combined age of 302 for The Hollywood Reporter. Patricia Morison (age 100), Norman Lloyd (age 100) and Connie Sawyer (age 102) shared memories and offered tips. All are in good health. “I ...

posted 3:32:48pm Aug. 29, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: Youth with Michael Caine
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-T7CM4di_0c[/youtube] Michael Caine and Harvey Keitel play friends on vacation in an elegant hotel at the foot of the Alps. Fred, a composer and conductor, is now retired. Mick, a film director, is ...

posted 3:25:22pm Aug. 29, 2015 | read full post »

Worst Accents in Movies
Thanks to Indiewire for including me in this great rundown of the all-time worst movie accents. Critics vented frustration and fury, many picking Quentin Tarantino and Dick van Dyke, but I went with two actors who played Robin ...

posted 2:13:18pm Aug. 28, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.