Parents' Guide to

Crimson Tide

By Heather Boerner, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

War Games in the water; older teens and up.

Movie R 1995 116 minutes
Crimson Tide Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 10+

age 15+

Excellent Naval Drama

Language: **Copied from IMDB Parental Advisory**** 27 uses of "f**k", 16 uses of "shit", 12 uses of "ass" (1 used as "asshole"), 8 uses of "damn" (6 paired with "God"), 8 uses of "hell", 4 uses of "Jesus", 2 uses of "bitch", and 1 use of "piss". I have to say I only remember like 4 uses of the F-word. Sex: No sex or nudity. 2 sexual references both using the F-word. Review: This was an excellent drama about waring ideals regarding following orders and the chain of command. The stakes are very high, and 2 very good men end up on opposite sides of a critical decision. The acting is superb. I recommend for ages 15+ because I think at 15 a youth is mature enough for the language and vulgarity to become an issue and at 15 they should be able to comprehend and appreciate the setting and scope of the situation portrayed in the movie.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (4 ):

With an all-star cast and a compelling subject -- nuclear war with an unpredictable adversary -- CRIMSON TIDE is worthy viewing for any teen considering joining the military. When the film was released in 1995, filmmaker Tony Scott couldn't have known terrorists would attack the U.S. and the whole country would be on high alert. This film channels those anxieties into dramatic fare that's sure to be remembered even if the suspense is sometimes hard to sit through. All the bells, whistles, red lighting, and operatic scores may be enough to keep most teens entertained, and some may delight in recognizing their favorite Soprano, James Gandolfini, as Lt. Bobby Dougherty. Likewise, they'll recognize Lt. Peter 'WEAPS' Ince as Lord of the Rings' Viggo Mortensen and even Chicken Little's Steve Zahn.

Still, teens may roll their eyes at the more talky parts. Indeed, some things don't translate. Kids growing up in the age of suicide bombers may not understand the grip the threat of nuclear war held on this country in the 1980s. And they are unlikely to relate to the bigger coming-of-age drama within the film -- that of diplomatic and quietly charismatic Hunter succeeding Ramsey's brute strength. Teens and parents may not be able to help themselves from asking which approach to war prevails today, and which they support. But for those interested in the reason for wars there's plenty of fodder. The film starts with jocular questioning of whether the U.S. should have dropped the bomb on Japan in World War II. Later, Hunter explains his view of war: "The purpose of war is to serve a political end, but the true nature of war is to serve itself. In a nuclear world, a true enemy can't be destroyed. In a nuclear world," viewers are told, "the true enemy is war itself."

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