A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
This movie doesn't really seem to know what it wants to say: The bulk of it advocates becoming Christian and taking God into your heart, but then it abruptly drops this idea, and, additionally, doesn't provide many positive examples.
Positive Role Models
The lead character is a cynical, smart Ivy League graduate who views everyone else with contempt. When he gets to know a few people, he starts to understand kindness, but for whatever reason, all of these friendships end or fall apart abruptly. He's left even more confused and sad than he was at the beginning.
Violence & Scariness
A character comes on to the main character in an aggressively sexual way; one scene comes very close to being a rape scene, but it's stopped in time. The predator slaps his victim and has him pushed up against the wall, with the victim pleading for him to stop. Another character tells the story of how he lost his leg in war. A woman uses some verbal, violent abortion imagery while telling a story.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
The main character and another male character flirt. The second male character shows the lead character his extensive collection of sex toys, all of which are mounted on the walls and on shelves in his room. This character comes on strong to the main character, who rebuffs him, but the other character starts to force himself onto the other man. Background characters are seen passionately kissing on a bus, and a woman is shown doing something sexual to her partner under a blanket.
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Language is very, very strong during the movie's first half, and especially in its first 10 minutes, though it eventually tapers out to nearly none by the final half hour. Words include "f--k," "s--t," the "N" word, "p---y," "c--t," "c--k," "t-ts," "a--hole," "cum," "ass," "son of a bitch," "f----t," "d--k," "motherf----r," "crap," "retard," "slut," "c---sucker," "dyke," and "bastard."
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Products & Purchases
Mountain Dew is mentioned. The main character gulps some NyQuil to try to get to sleep on a bus.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
The main character gulps some NyQuil to try to get to sleep on a bus. Two guys drink beers in a social way after work. Adult characters smoke cigarettes in one scene.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that C.O.G. is a coming-of-age comedy/drama based on a story by humorist/essayist David Sedaris -- though his many fans are likely to be disappointed. The movie is strange, confused, and not very funny. It features a main character who may be gay, though the movie doesn't really discuss this. A sexually aggressive male partner tries to force the lead character into sex, but the attempt is stopped before anything very serious happens. There's also some violent imagery in the dialogue. Language is extremely strong, especially during the movie's first third, and includes just about every word under the sun. There are a few quick sexually suggestive moments, and adult characters occasionally drink beers and smoke cigarettes in a casual, background way. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
C.O.G. claims to be the first movie adapted from the writings of essayist/humorist David Sedaris, and, unfortunately, it's a huge disappointment. Sedaris' work is wry, self-effacing, witty, and often tender; this movie is simultaneously confused, arrogant, and passive. As with almost any movie told from the point of view of a writer, the lead character is only a passive observer and isn't at all engaging. Likewise, other characters never really come to life, because we only see them from one vantage point. As for the movie's themes, it hints at the character's homosexuality but then totally ignores it and buries it until a final moment that's too little, too late. Plus, after a cynically humorous opening scene, the humor stops, the religious themes are introduced with the utmost seriousness, and finally, these, too, are just as suddenly dropped. Most disturbingly, a quasi-attempted rape is shrugged off as an awkward inconvenience. The only thing that's consistent about the movie is that none of it feels genuine.
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.