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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
If you break the law, eventually, you'll most likely get caught.
Positive Role Models
Some of the journalists, investigators, and experts on the case show strong desire for "good" to prevail over "bad."
Featuring no women, except for one journalist, there isn't much diversity, except the film's general showcasing of a world of con people and criminals.
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Violence & Scariness
There are some shots and photographs of a crime scene that shows blood dripping down a wall and of a murdered man's bloody shirt. Adults talk about their friends being murdered and gunned down. People fear for their lives.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some scenes with women in bathing suits and club wear that show a fair amount of cleavage. A woman dances seductively in a bar. Adults romantically kiss.
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Some instances throughout of "f--k," "f--king," "s--t," "hell," "God," and "damn."
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Products & Purchases
References to Inter Milan FC, Martin Scorsese, Puff Daddy, D'Assault, Gad Elmaleh, N. Pokora, Maitre Gims, Cyril Hanouna, Nikos, Akon, and Pharrell Williams.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adults casually drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Lords of Scam is a documentary about some people who took advantage of a loophole within the European Union Emissions Trading System and made off with an estimated 283 million euros, and only some of which was recovered. But most of this film follows one of the main players, fresh out of serving 7 years in prison for his part in the scam. Viewers get a decent glimpse into a French or Parisian world of con people, criminals, big money drama, and murder. This world includes footage and stories of lavish spending, partying, organized crime, assassinations, and accusations of murder. Pictures of murder crime scenes and bloody shirts are shown, and stories of "hits" and being the target of "hits" are shared. The film features male subjects entirely, outside of one woman journalist who briefly comments on the case. Women do appear in the background in footage of parties, weddings, clubs, and at the beach and often wearing dance wear or bathing suits. Adults smoke cigarettes, drink alcohol casually and in party environments. Strong language includes, "f--k," "f--king," "s--t," "hell," "God," and "damn." 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 film is close to being decent, but a few key decisions keep it from getting there. The main problem with Lords of Scam is that it focuses on the wrong thing. While it does an okay job in the beginning explaining exactly how the scam worked, what the loophole actually was, and how scammers were able to steal millions of euros, afterwards the documentary does a poor job at editing itself. Overly long by a good 20 minutes, most screen time after this initial info dump happens is given to Mardouche "Marco" Mouly, one of the main players in the scam. Viewers visit him in a variety of contexts, environments, and scenarios as he often discusses aspects of his life with friends, ex-friends, and anyone who will listen. Incredibly charismatic, verbose, and commanding, Marco has an intriguing presence, but the film indulges him to the point that some viewers may not have big appetites for a showcase of narcissism.
Further, at some point, maybe half way in, many viewers might also realize that there might not be a lesson here, as there certainly isn't one for Marco. Sure, he had to endure 7 years of prison, but he's surely still incredibly wealthy (despite his protestations to the contrary), continues to live a lavish lifestyle, and now has a documentary out that primarily features himself in all his confounding glory.
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.