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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Violence & Scariness
Some tense scenes.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Sexual references and situations, nudity.
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Some strong language.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this movie has some strong language, locker-room nudity, and sexual references and situations. There are tense scenes and injuries. Characters drink and smoke. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Form follows content in Robert Altman's mesmerizing film; as in the lives of the ballet troupe it portrays, it is the dance that takes center stage. The rest of the characters' lives are glimpsed only around the edges. The result is intimate and moving, with dance numbers that are thrillingly filmed and backstage stories that are quietly observed. This is not about nutcrackers and tutus. This is about people who make the ultimate commitment to art and, especially, it is about the art that they make. Altman is not just showing us dancers here. He is showing us himself.
The off-stage scenes have a loose, documentary feel but they are as meticulously observed and as carefully positioned as a ballerina en pointe. The rehearsal scenes mix art and drama as the choreographers treat the primary dancers the way sculptors treat clay while the back-up dancers "marking" the moves off to the side. One technical point worth noting is that this is the first film to use a new post-production process called Darbee Vision, which adds depth and vivid color to video, and which is ideally suited for photographing the dance numbers, which are, after all, center stage.
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Our Editors Recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate