Movie Mom

Movie Mom


posted by jmiller
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some violent content.
Profanity:Some very strong language
Nudity/Sex:Non-explicit sexual situations, references to adultery
Alcohol/Drugs:Social drinking, reference to getting drunk as a way to deal with bad news
Violence/Scariness:Shooting, attempted murder, suicide, some graphic images
Diversity Issues:None
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some violent content.
Profanity: Some very strong language
Nudity/Sex: Non-explicit sexual situations, references to adultery
Alcohol/Drugs: Social drinking, reference to getting drunk as a way to deal with bad news
Violence/Scariness: Shooting, attempted murder, suicide, some graphic images
Diversity Issues: None
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

This is not a who-dun-it. It’s a will-they-be-able-to-prove-it. As in the old Columbo television series, we know from the beginning who pulled the trigger. We see Ted Crawford (Anthony Hopkins) shoot his wife in the head because she was having an affair. We see the police come for him. And we see hotshot prosecutor Willy Beachum (Ryan Gosling) get what looks like a slam-dunk case: the police have the gun and a confession.

Then Ted and Willy face off against each other. Ted likes to create intricate, meticulously designed machines with all kinds of rolling balls and shifting gears. His fondness for complicated puzzles is an indication that it isn’t going to be a slam-dunk case after all. At least not for the prosecution.

This is one of those films that really boils down to what goes on between the two men. There’s a distracting and predictable backstory about whether Willy will sell out and go to work for the big corporate law firm with the pretty senior associate yadda yadda. But all that matters is the cat and mouse game between Ted and Willy, especially because it is not clear who is the cat and who is the mouse. And because Ted and Willy are played by actors who know how to work it. Gosling’s Oakie accent gets a bit wearing, and even Hopkins’ accent seems to waver at times, but the script gives them some juicy twists and relish-worthy lines and when the two of them get going, you can feel the air between them crackle.

Parents should know that this film has brief but intense violence with a man shooting his wife at point-blank range and an off-camera suicide. The issue of “pulling the plug” on someone with no brain activity is raised. Characters use some strong and ugly language. There are sexual references, including adultery and a non-explicit sexual situation.

Families who see this movie should talk about what was important to Willie and how his priorities — or his understanding of his priorities — changed. What will he do next?

Families who enjoy this movie will enjoy the classic Witness For the Prosecution and more contemporary courtroom thrillers like Primal Fear and Presumed Innocent. They might also appreciate the television series Columbo.

Previous Posts

Independent Spirit Nominees 2015
The Spirit Awards are like the Oscars for independent films. Some of them have big stars and some are distributed by big studios. Some are made by first-time filmmakers on budgets that would barely pay for one day's catering fees on a studio ...

posted 7:49:50pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

The most romantic movie of the year is "Carol," based on a novel by Patricia Highsmith, the author of Strangers on a Train and The ...

posted 5:54:13pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

The Good Dinosaur
"The Good Dinosaur" is the good movie. Not the great movie. Not the especially memorable movie. Just the perfectly nice and pleasant movie, much ...

posted 5:43:47pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Rocky had to find the eye of the tiger. When we first met him back in 1976, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) was an amiable, ...

posted 5:18:44pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Is "Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever" the Worst Movie of All Time?
It was a lot of fun to talk to Libby Coleman about "Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever." In an article for Ozy, Coleman says that by one standard it is the worst film of all time (or at least since the internet began keeping track) -- it has 115 negative ...

posted 10:29:10am Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

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

All reported content is logged for investigation.