Trading Places

  • Review Date: October 31, 2005
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 1983
  • Running Time: 116 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Edgy, bawdy '80s comedy not meant for kids.
  • Review Date: October 31, 2005
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 1983
  • Running Time: 116 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Showing no remorse for their actions, two characters drastically alter the lives of two complete strangers for their own personal amusement. Many characters are greedy and selfish and indulge in drugs and alcohol. The film also elevates prostitution as an acceptable means of earning a living.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

Several scenes of topless women; one of the main characters is a prostitute.

Language

Packed with profanity.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

References and visualizations of several drugs; binge drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this film is too bawdy for children under 17 as it has explicit female nudity, coarse language, and visualizations/discussions of hard-core drugs (including PCP, cocaine, Quaaludes). Besides profanity, there are racist remarks. The mature content depicts stereotypes of social classes and different races. Avarice drives many of the characters, yet the film does a good job showing the ill effects of greed.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

TRADING PLACES tells the story of greedy, wealthy Wall Street brothers Mortimer (Don Ameche) and Randolph (Ralph Bellamy) Duke, who wager on whether environment or heredity defines a man. The pawns in their game are a smart-mouthed street hustler Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy) and an affluent investment executive Louis Winthorpe III (Dan Aykroyd). The bet entails taking Winthorpe's power and money and giving it to Billy Ray to see if whether nature or nurture will take over. When both Valentine and Winthorpe get wind of the brothers' scheme, they join forces to turn the tables on the Dukes.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Set as more of a dark comedy Trading Places insightfully raises some issues about socio-economics and class structure in America. Both Aykroyd and Murphy put on stellar performances, in addition to cameos offered by Al Franken and Jim Belushi.

Although the movie depicts many stereotypical views of money, it could offer good topics of debate for parents and kids. Adults might find the film entertaining, but it's definitely not appropriate for younger children.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the overall message of the film: nature versus nurture. What does this film say about the role of money on social behavior? Are people who are born with money more or less likely to commit crimes? How about poor people?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:June 8, 1983
DVD release date:September 24, 2002
Cast:Dan Aykroyd, Denholm Elliott, Eddie Murphy
Director:John Landis
Studio:Paramount Pictures
Genre:Comedy
Run time:116 minutes
MPAA rating:R

This review of Trading Places was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

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What parents and kids say

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Written byAnonymous April 10, 2014
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

Funny Movie

This movie is hilarious. There is a few nude girls and a lot of uses of F***. Overall, this is a good movie
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Kid, 10 years old September 5, 2010
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

don't listen to csm or the R rating

this is a great movie but still i think the R is a bit harsh. frequent nudity often when someone is taking off their shirt. the f-word is said moderately s-word said a few times one rasist word some milder language. mild violence like pointing guns at people. a man in prision is pushed up agenst a wall some refrences to a man being cut with finger nails (thought it never happend). drug refrences are highish lots of drugs are seen on screen a man smokes a drug but is intteruped. a man has a heart attack. a good movie again i would have rated it PG-13. 12+
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Kid, 10 years old September 15, 2009
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

Good movie, bad role models.

I love this movie! Funny, exhilirating, and downright exciting. But, it does have overdosing female nuditiy, drinking, drugs, and the common use of the word "n-er".
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byJocelyn707 March 5, 2012
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

Great but "inapropro"

Real great movie and storyline NOT for young kids. People may say its "inapropro".the business men totally mess these guys lifes up for a ONE DOLLAR bet. but the men team up and show them they cant control their lives
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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