A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Celebrates learning to be comfortable with -- and confident in -- who you really are, no matter how embarrassing or insufficient you think you might be. Celebrates teamwork and friendships in which the participants help each other.
Positive Role Models
The main character is relatable, but he doesn't always make great choices. But he does end up overcoming adversity, and he does feel remorse for poor decisions.
Violence & Scariness
The main character tries to commit suicide via hanging. A dead body is shown. Bear attack. Fall from height, broken bone, blood. Brief fighting, including punching. Vomiting. Piles of animal poop. Dead body used as a kind of weapon to shoot small animals.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Naked bottom shown more than once. Guys ogle Sports Illustrated swimsuit models. Mentions of "boobs," "vaginas," "butts," etc. Manny's penis movement is used to determine direction and is shown to a little girl, without knowledge of repercussions. Frequent talk of masturbation and sex.
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Several uses of "f--k," "s--t," "retarded," "a--hole," "oh God," "don't be stupid." Heavy, frequent fart sounds.
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Products & Purchases
Mentions of Netflix. Trash includes discarded packaging for Cheese Puffs, Sports Illustrated magazine, Ding Dongs, microwave popcorn, etc. An iPhone is frequently shown.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters drink vodka and get comically drunk.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Swiss Army Man is a very unusual indie dramedy about a man (Paul Dano) stranded on a desert island who befriends a corpse (Daniel Radcliffe, in a decided departure from Harry Potter) and manages to persevere. There's a suicide attempt by hanging, a dead body, a bear attack, broken limbs, some blood, fighting, vomiting, poop, and farting (lots of farting). Characters talk frequently about sex and masturbation, and language is fairly strong in general, with multiple uses of words like "f--k," "s--t," and "retarded." In one scene, the characters get drunk on vodka, with comic repercussions. And, through it all, the movie promotes self-confidence, friendship, and teamwork, albeit in a most uncommon manner. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This is the kind of bizarre, original, risk-taking independent movie that's increasingly rare to find in an era of superhero and action movie franchises. It's weird, amazing, and refreshing. Co-written and co-directed by Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, Swiss Army Man is a compendium of strange ideas, beautiful things, some disturbing thoughts, and a touching friendship that can only be found in movies about actual people.
Notwithstanding his amazing performance as Brian Wilson in last year's Love & Mercy, Paul Dano has never been better as a man wrestling with his identity and humanity, finding wonderful humor in every situation. The filmmakers decorate the screen with such astonishing images -- including a bus made of sticks and junk -- that viewers are constantly swept away. On the other hand, the movie's frequent discussions of bodily functions and death, while grounding, are a bit of a turn-off. But that's the only quibble in an otherwise extraordinary movie.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.