Parents' Guide to

Million Dollar Baby

By Nell Minow, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Violent Oscar winner is inspiring but too intense for kids.

Movie PG-13 2004 132 minutes
Million Dollar Baby Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 15+

Mature film has caring relationships, inspirational messages

Million Dollar Baby is a very emotional and upsetting film for its PG-13 rating, not to mention the graphic and disturbing images along with the violence and language. In detail, I will be listing all of the mature elements from the film in 5 categories: VIOLENCE: In fights, opponents are viscously punched in the face and smacked onto the ground onscreen. During fights, graphic wounds are healed in detail, including a girls nose being broken and bleeding everywhere until her manager cracks it back into place. Other scenes show open wounds having alcohol put into them etc. A girl is brutally elbowed in the face until she is punched and knocked to the floor where she slams her head into a wooden stool. This is extremely graphic. A helpless character is beaten violently in the face as he attempts to fight back. In the process of helping him, another protagonist pushes the attacker away and knocks him onto the ground where he spits out a bloody tooth. The victim is shown with disturbing wounds and blood pouring from all sides of his face. A man helps a woman commit suicide by injecting her with a shot and unplugging her oxygen machine. In an attempt to kill herself, a woman bites her tongue until blood pours everywhere as she almost bleeds out and drowns. Note she is paralyzed from the neck down and this is her only escape. Overall, the violence and imagery is very strong and hard to look at. LANGUAGE: “f--k”, “s--t”, “damn”, “t-ts”, “n----r” and more are used throughout the film, sometimes as insults but never sexually. The stronger words are less frequent. SEXUAL CONTENT: A man comments on a woman’s breasts using “tits” before everyone starts to make fun of him and repeat what he said except about him. Mockingly, a man humps the floor while yelling sexual fraises in the same subject. DRUG USE: Nothing much at all with the exception of lethal injection used. THEMATIC ELEMENTS: The film is extremely hard to watch as tragic, horrible events take place with main protagonists. OVERALL: The films overall content makes it to mature for young teens, 15+ is recommended.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much swearing
1 person found this helpful.
age 14+

You forgot something.

You should change the ranking for the "sex/romance." There are scantily clad women, as usual. And I'm not talking about the boxers, I'm talking about the ring-girls. I don't understand why so much is left out in these reviews.

This title has:

Too much sex

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2):
Kids say (21):

At first, MILLION DOLLAR BABY is a fresh, assured, and evocative take on the classic boxing formula. The details of the boxing world and Frankie's relationships with Maggie and with his long-time friend Eddie (Morgan Freeman, who also narrates) are warm and richly observed. Frankie and Eddie have the bickering banter of a longtime married couple, and pros Eastwood and Freeman riff off each other like jazz players who've been jamming for a lifetime. Eastwood is also marvelous with Swank in a performance that's fuller, fonder, and funnier than we've seen from him since the Any Which Way But Loose days. For the first half of the film, the narration, based on F.X. Toole's superb book and beautifully read by Freeman, is so vivid we can smell sweat and adrenaline.

Too bad Million Dollar Baby takes those great performances and throws some cliched sports metaphors their way. And when tragedy strikes, Frankie and Maggie have to make some tough choices. So does director Eastwood, and he makes the wrong ones, going for the manipulative and the maudlin, everyone lining up as either saintly or unredeemably awful.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: December 15, 2004
  • On DVD or streaming: July 12, 2005
  • Cast: Clint Eastwood, Hilary Swank, Morgan Freeman
  • Director: Clint Eastwood
  • Inclusion Information: Black actors
  • Studio: Warner Bros.
  • Genre: Drama
  • Run time: 132 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13
  • MPAA explanation: violence, some disturbing images, thematic material and language
  • Last updated: June 2, 2023

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