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Parents' Guide to


By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Story centered on drug abuse sends very iffy messages.

Movie PG-13 2011 105 minutes
Limitless Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 16+

Based on 23 parent reviews

age 16+

Great, but should be rated R in the US

Parents need to know that this movie is difficult to understand. It's about taking a pill that produces enhanced mental acuity. I really liked this movie and it's quite exciting, but I can't understand why the MPAA gave it a PG-13. It's R rated content, with 4 (yes, four!) sex scenes. The first involves sex on a bed. Though we do not clearly see it happen, we hear moaning sounds and see legs moving in a suggestive way. The second involves a woman's shoe moving around on what seemed to be a bathroom sink, but to be honest, my dad skipped that scene (he hates sex scenes!) so I couldn't tell whether it was a couple having sex on the toilet, or if it was just a woman tapping her feet on the sink as she was taking a poo. The third involves a woman taking her clothes off and having sex with the main character (I'm pretty sure, but Dad skipped through that scene once again). The forth involves another woman taking the main character to her apartment room, and having sex with him or something. There is also violent, bloody scenes. The scene where the main character discovers that his friend is dead is quite graphic, and looks like it came straight out of an R-rated action thriller. Also a few more graphic scenes, like the gruesome decapitated hands scene, where a character opens a box with two decapitated hands inside. Also not to forget the violent, bloody scene at the end where that man dies, and the main character drinks his blood, and there is blood all over the floor, which seems (once again) like it came out of an R-rated movie. That's not all. The theme is about drugs and involves a lot of drug use. I thought that the PG-13 rating was just not right for this sexual content-filled, graphic violent and drug themed movie. That's why it should have been rated R. Seriously. Who would think that all those graphic sex scenes, the bloody violence and the drug themes would be fine for 13 year olds? We live in a world where violence is all over the media, not to mention the news. So, MPAA, please do not expand kids to more of the same. My MPAA rating would be: R for sexual content, some bloody violence and drug themes/use. It's hard to understand and it's exciting, but very graphic and sexual, so 16 and up.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 18+

An Honest Review

This movie no question should have been rated r. I am still wondering why they would rate this PG13, not too mention the four or five f-bombs in the movie alone should put it there. The main reason though that it should be rated R is because of the nudity in the film. Please parents do not let your children watch this. Excluding the sexuality, it wouldn't be that bad, however the movie is advocating drug use, but obviously the drug is completely fictional. In my opinion though if something were available to the public, allowing me to be 100X more productive and creative, wouldn't sound too bad, but again kind of takes away from having absolute control on our lives, sort of like cheating life. But again just opinion.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (23 ):
Kids say (38 ):

With LIMITLESS, director Neil Burger (The Lucky Ones) delivers a sci-fi thriller much like his earlier The Illusionist, but cleverer and more playful. In a way, the movie is as involving and addictive as the fictitious drug it conjures up. Burger cooks up many tricks, including a lighting scheme that visually illustrates the effects of the drug, as well as a memorable sequence depicting an 18-hour blackout that the hero experiences while on the drug.

Yes, the movie basically celebrates consequence-free behavior, but it also succeeds in tapping into a general human dissatisfaction and offering a vicarious escape (which, in a way, makes the iffiness of its messages even more questionable for teens!). Meanwhile, Burger guides Cooper through an appealing performance, and he's matched by De Niro in a snaky supporting role, as well as many other terrific turns in smaller parts. Ultimately, Limitless is a strong combination of the all-too-rare pairing of sci-fi ideas and human emotions, but it's best suited for adults.

Movie Details

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