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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Characters come to DOA to battle each other and win the competition -- this is what primarily motivates their actions and decisions. But main characters do look out for each other and work together to defeat the villain.
Positive Role Models
Kasumi overcomes a courtyard of warriors and infiltrates DOA to find her missing brother. Tina, Kasumi, and Christie become friends and work together to defeat the villain. Weatherby is kind to Helena when she loses. Tina's dad is supportive of her. Other DOA fighters are out for themselves.
Most main characters are clever, brave, strong women. While fierce competitors, they often wear bikinis or underwear, and the camera focuses on their bodies. Kasumi, Ayane, Hayate, and Hayabusa are Asian characters with substantial roles in the story, and many background characters are Asian too (DOA was filmed in China and Thailand). Some costumes and sets are a little stereotypical (Buddha statues everywhere, women in qipao dresses). Tina's dad thinks she's attracted to women and is happy for her.
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Violence & Scariness
Video-gamey violence includes kicks, karate chops, punches, body slams, flips, falls from great heights, sword fights, crotch grabs/kicks, needle stabs/pricks, head-butts, bites, breaking bones (with crackling sound effects), eye gougings, martial arts weapons (stars, poles, etc.), and explosions. None of the fighting leads to bloodshed, permanent injury, or death. Pirates appear with guns but don't use them. (Spoiler alert!) The island explodes at the end (in slow motion, of course).
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Men and women wear swimsuits and underwear. The camera focuses on women's bodies (torso, bottom, back). Christie first appears in the shower, then a towel as she battles intruders (she puts her underwear on to distract them, eventually tossing her bra into the air, accompanied by brief profile shots of her breasts that are suggestive rather than explicit). Max and Christie embrace in bed and flirt; Zack "comes on" to Tina in a hot tub; she flirts, then leaves with his swimsuit (he gets out naked, covering his genitals). Other characters are also seen in bed together. A battle between two women takes place in rain and slow motion. Several characters become couples and kiss at the end of the film, inspiring Tina to tell them to "get a room."
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Several uses of "s--t," plus "ass," "hell," and "son of a b--" (it's cut off in mid-utterance).
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Products & Purchases
One big promotion for the video game it's based on. Product placement for Vitamin Water.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters drink what looks to be beer, champagne, and wine.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that DOA: Dead or Alive (based on the same-named video game) is full of incessant action (though little blood, permanent injury, or death). Even though women are main characters, the film seems to be designed to focus on their bodies in bikinis and underwear. There's a fair amount of sex-related content, including brief profile shots of uncovered bodies, and characters flirting, kissing, and talking about sleeping together. There's also implied drinking, as well as several uses of words like "s--t," "ass," and "hell." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Directed by respected martial arts choreographer Corey Yuen, this action movie is a series of fight scenes strung together by a pretense of a plot. Video game characters don't always make for complex movie characters. While almost all of the key players in DOA: Dead or Alive are strong, powerful women, they're frequently shown in bikinis and underwear, and the camera focuses on their bodies. Their friendships are based on admiring one another's athletic skills, which they all display frequently. The only men competitors to stand out are Ryu Hayabusa (Kane Kosugi) and Zack (Brian J. White), who play second fiddle to the women fighters.
The plot includes some rudimentary familial tensions: Tina fights with her father (also a pro wrestler); Kasumi believes her brother isn't dead, as has been reported; and Helena (Sarah Carter) suspects that her uncle Donovan is up to no good. But, really, this is all about the fighting.
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Our Editors Recommend
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