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  • Photo credit: Wilson Webb / Wilson Webb

    Ben Stiller directs and plays the title role in “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” in which moments of peril are treated lightheartedly.

  • Frank Connor / Universal Pictures

    Keanu Reeves stars in “47 Ronin,” which though frequently and explicitly violent can claim to have quite-clean language.

Family Watch: ‘Lone Survivor’ is a violent true story, but not for the young

Published: Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014 - 12:00 am
Last Modified: Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014 - 5:10 pm

Current films are reviewed each week to provide parents a guide to decide what may be appropriate to younger viewers.

LONE SURVIVOR

Rating: R for strong bloody war violence and pervasive language

What it’s about: A Navy SEALs team on a mission that goes terribly wrong

The kid attractor factor: Action and bloodshed and lots of it

Good lessons / bad lessons: Soldiers fight not just for a country and a cause, but for each other.

Violence: Almost constant

Language: Soldiers swear

Sex: None

Drugs: None

Parents’ advisory: Extremely violent true story, OK for 13-and-up but most suitable for 16-and-ups.

PARANORMAL ACTIVITY: THE MARKED ONES

Rating: R for pervasive language, some violence, graphic nudity and some drug use

What it’s about: Teenagers in Los Angeles battle demonic possession and try to master their new video camera as they do.

The kid attractor factor: More “Paranormal” goings-on with things that go bump in the night

Good lessons / bad lessons: Your old Simon (Says) toy can double as a ouija board, if there are demons about.

Violence: A bit, here and there, nothing that graphic

Language: Teenagers swear, especially those running from a demon.

Sex: Full nudity in a non-sexual situation, teens “hooking up”

Drugs: Some

Parents’ advisory: Jokey as it is, take the R-rating seriously. OK for mature 13-year-olds, but intended for older teens – 16 and up.

THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY

Rating: PG for some crude comments, language and action violence

What it’s about: A shy man who has always lived a more active fantasy life than a real one starts to act on those fantasies just as his job comes to an end.

The kid attractor factor: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig and lots of crazy risks, including swimming with sharks and climbing mountains

Good lessons / bad lessons: “To see life, see the world.”

Violence: Moments of peril, played for laughs

Language: A couple of off-color remarks

Sex: Simple flirtation

Drugs: Alcohol is used, to excess.

Parents’ advisory: A family-friendly “seize life, live life” comedy, suitable for 8-and-ups

47 RONIN

Rating: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some disturbing images, and thematic elements

What it’s about: Outcast samurai vow to avenge themselves on the ruler who caused the death of their master.

The kid attractor factor: Samurai swordplay, much of it by Keanu Reeves

Good lessons / bad lessons: “When a crime goes unpunished, the world goes unbalanced.”

Violence: Lots and lots, with beheadings, stabbings and slashings. Not terribly bloody, for all that.

Language: Quite clean

Sex: Forbidden love, a little kissing

Parents’ advisory: OK for 13 and up.

Read more articles by Roger Moore



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