A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The main message here seems to be "trouble could be lurking under your very nose" -- Russian spies could be anywhere, and there's nothing you can do about it unless you're a trained super spy. A slightly more positive message is hidden for the purposes of a "twist" in the movie's plot.
Positive Role Models
Salt is a hero who's made to look like a villain for most of the film. Her ultimate aim is to prevent the world from being destroyed, but she also acts out of revenge. She kills many people during her journey and steals things whenever she needs them, and she never trusts anyone.
Violence & Scariness
Heavy action violence, with lots of shooting, stabbing, fighting, punching, chasing, and explosions. The heroine is tortured in the opening scene; she's pummeled, and gasoline is poured down her throat. A man kills two guards with a shoe knife. Salt is shot and wounded; she stabs and kills a man with a broken vodka bottle. A flashback of Salt as a little girl shows her bruised and clad in bandages, as if she had been horribly beaten.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some romantic kissing. In one scene, Salt removes her panties from under her skirt, using them to cover up and disable a security camera. She's also shown in her underwear during the opening scene. There's a shot of a Long Island bar called "Jugs and Strokers."
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The most frequent words used are "goddamn" and "s--t." "F--k" is used at once. Also "Jesus Christ" (as an exclamation), "damn," and "hell."
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Products & Purchases
One very prominent Pepsi billboard, a brief glimpse of a Heineken truck, and images of board games like Operation, Connect Four, and Othello.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
The Russian spies drink a lot of vodka in a "background" way.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that action thriller Salt -- which stars Angelina Jolie as a CIA agent on the run -- is quite violent: There's lots of fighting, shooting, stabbing, killing, chases, and explosions, as well as a brief torture scene and a flashback scene suggesting that a child was beaten. Strong language isn't constant, but you'll hear both "f--k" and "s--t." Sexy stuff mostly stops at kissing (though one scene also features Salt removing her underwear from beneath her skirt), and some Russian spies drink vodka, but it's not prominent. Teen fans of Jolie and action may be intrigued, but it's not as entertaining as her 2008 hit Wanted. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
SALT could have been a pretty good summer popcorn thriller, but director Phillip Noyce and Jolie lend it too much weight without providing any depth; it takes its silly plot a bit too seriously. And although it tries to throw in some twists and surprises, they're not very well executed or surprising. Plus, the action is uninspiring, and the characters don't have any real depth. Some flashbacks seem like a last-minute attempt to help explain just who Salt really is, but they don't help.
In other words, there's not much at stake here, and what's left isn't really that much fun. Only Jolie's sharp onscreen ferocity helps pass the time in an interesting way, but even she feels a bit bored and/or stranded by the lack of material and imagination.
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.