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Parents' Guide to

The Words

By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Teen-friendly romance is thoughtful but falls short.

Movie PG-13 2012 96 minutes
The Words Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 13+

Sex: 5/10 - Violence: 1/10 - Language: 7/10 - Drinking/Smoking: 8/10

(I am reviewing the theatrical version) Sex: A man and a woman lat down on a matress. They kiss and flirt. *A woman sits on a man's lap and kisses him a few times. *A man and a woman kiss as they walk down a street in Paris. *A man undresses a woman and kisses her with passion (in the next scene they have a new born baby). *A man pulls a woman into his arms and kisses her against a wall. *A woman and a man kiss breifly on a couch. *A woman shakes her butt at a man and it is implied that they have sex of screen. *Many couples embrace and hold hands. *Two couples are shown sleeping together. ---- Violence: *A man trashes his apartment from his anger. *There are a few loud fights with hurtful words and loud voices. *Language: F*cked, Godd@mn, Sh*t, Bullsh*t, screwed, h*lll. ---- Drinking: there is drinking through teh whole movie between all of the couples. *Twice in this film, men get drunk and you can see it in their faces and their eyes. *A man tells a woman he wants to drink wine with her and they do. *People smoke through the whole movie

This title has:

Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
age 13+

Better than everyone says

(I apologize for the horrid formatting of this review. Nothing seemed to work!) It's a shame that this movie is so under appreciated for what it really is: a work of art. This isn't a mindless film full of violence and sexual content that so many today crave. It isn't silly or crude. It is a thoughtful, meaningful and powerful theatrical production that touches the writer in all of us. It's a work of fiction that bends our perception of a movie and fools us - and delights in it. It artistically portrays the realistic and unavoidably consequences of life and it does it to some of the finest music composed. If you aren't willing to put some brain power and attention into the movie, you will be like all the rest of the nay-sayers. However, if you are willing to open up your mind and think a little, this movie will sweep you off your feet and take you away. Superb acting and writing round out this creative movie. A must watch for writers, readers, and those who are willing to keep up with the daring, shameless movie "The Words." CONTENT (reiterating Common Sense Media's review) Sexual content: There is plenty of kissing between couples (married or courting), but nothing more than that is shown. No nudity. Violence: Little to no violence. A wife slaps her husband out of a surge of emotion. A dead, charred man is carried out of a burnt building on a stretcher, covered in a cloth - only his arm is visible. Language: There seems to be two versions of this movie. The version I saw, which I believe was the "normal," theatrical version, contained only a single F-word. Other profanity is scattered throughout the movie, namely the S-word and BS. It is relatively infrequent and thus is not jarring. Apparently in another version (a director's cut, maybe?), there are eight F-words, though I've not been able to confirm this. Drinking and smoking: A lot of smoking, though most of it is shown back in the day when it was common to smoke. A few times, a character is drunk and/or drinking. Other content: Really, other than the language (which is deserving of a PG-13 rating), the movie is clean.

This title has:

Great messages
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (3 ):

You have to give props to a movie that dares to be thoughtful and thought-provoking; few aim squarely at these targets, so kudos for trying. But unfortunately THE WORDS falls short of its ambitions. To start, it's much too long at two-plus hours. Its riddle-wrapped-in-a-mystery plot has lots of threads to pursue, but it's still bloated (ironically, it should have had fewer words). When audiences have to peel through so many layers, you'd better be sure each one is worth the work -- and in this case, some of them aren't. Rory's story has a good hook, and viewers will likely even be intrigued when the purposefully vague "old man" reveals the movie's twist. But then that's followed by yet another twist, one which we no longer care to puzzle over -- not because it's so daunting, but because we've had enough.

This isn't the actors' fault. (Except for maybe Quaid, who's always likable but is also a little smarmy for his role, which needs more gravitas.) Cooper tries, and it's always great to run across Jeremy Irons. The Words is in some ways reminiscent of The Notebook, but the romance at the heart of this film's sad and troubled past is as stereotypically cinematic as they come. Heart-wrenching? Sure. Unique? No. Transcendent? Definitely not. Also, a movie about a novel that's meant to be an American classic ought to have words that burrow under our skin because they're so memorable. The little we hear barely makes an impression.

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