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Downsizing [2017] [R] - 6.4.7



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Unlike the MPAA we do not assign one inscrutable rating based on age, but 3 objective ratings for SEX/NUDITY, VIOLENCE/GORE and PROFANITY on a scale of 0 to 10, from lowest to highest, depending on quantity and context.

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Sex & Nudity
Violence & Gore
1 to 10


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A husband and his wife (Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig) decide to undergo a groundbreaking procedure that will minimize their impact on the planet by making them really tiny and making their financial situation much more comfortable. Also with Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau, Rolf Lassgård, Ingjerd Egeberg, Udo Kier, Jason Sudeikis and Maribeth Monroe. Directed by Alexander Payne. Several lines of dialogue are spoken in Norwegian with English subtitles. Several lines of dialogue are spoken in Spanish with no subtitles or translation. [2:15]

SEX/NUDITY 6 - Twenty sedated men are shown fully nude and lying on stretchers (we see bare chests, abdomens, genitals and legs). Twenty sedated and miniaturized men are shown fully nude as they are scooped onto miniature beds (we see bare chests, abdomens, genitals and legs). A photo of a fully nude man is shown and we see his bare chest, abdomen, genitals and legs. A woman is shown swimming topless (we see her bare breasts). A man is shown wearing a hospital gown and part of his bare buttocks are seen when he sits on a table. A fully nude man showers (we see his bare back to the upper buttocks). A man wakes up from a medical procedure and reaches under the sheets checking his genitals (we do not see anything but he seems relieved). A woman is shown in a bathtub with bubbles covering most of her body (we see her bare feet, knees, shoulders and upper chest). Several shirtless men are seen (we see their bare chests and abdomens). Several women at a party are shown wearing low-cut, tight-fitting and short dresses that reveal cleavage, bare legs and backs. A man wearing boxer shorts and a robe is shown and we see his bare chest, abdomen and legs. A man on TV is shown wearing what looks like boxer briefs (we see his bare chest, abdomen and legs).
 A man kisses a woman and then apologizes, she reaches toward him and they kiss again (sex is implied). A woman approaches a man at a party, whispers something in his ear and offers him a blue capsule; she places it on her tongue, they kiss and he swallows the capsule. A man leans to kiss a woman goodbye and she turns away. Two men kiss on the cheeks three times. Men and women dance together at a party where drugs and alcohol are consumed. A man and a woman eat dinner at a table and make small talk; the man walks the woman to the elevator and kisses her and she tells him that she isn't interested in that kind of relationship. A husband and his wife sleep together (wearing pajamas). A husband and his wife hug. A man and a woman hug and hold hands. A man rubs cream on a woman's leg below the knee (we see her bare thigh).
 A man tells another man that he should date single mothers and that there are all kinds of ways to have fun (presumably implying sexual ways). A man describes a young man as being, "The first small baby to die of syphilis." Two men talk about giving a semen sample.

VIOLENCE/GORE 4 - We see mice in cages and one mouse is shown sedated and placed into a machine that presumably miniaturizes it (we do not see the result). We see men being prepared for a medical procedure; their eyebrows, facial hair and body hair are shaved, they are sedated and an item is lubricated and presumably inserted into a man's rectum; dental fillings and implants are also removed (we see some blood on an apron and teeth in a bowl). A woman is shown with her head shaved and one eyebrow shaved.
 We understand that a woman died and another woman says that she thinks she gave her too many pain pills. A woman is shown with oxygen tubes in her nose and a man gives her an injection for pain (we do not see the needle enter the woman's flesh). Many sedated men are shown on medical tables and under sheets to the shoulders, with IVs. A woman lies on a sofa and complains of a splitting headache and that she feels like throwing up. A man yells when he steps into a shower and the water is unexpectedly hot. A woman removes her prosthetic leg and we see her leg missing from below the knee.
 A man in a bar (appearing inebriated) confronts a husband and his wife and asks them if they think they should have the same rights as "normal" people once they are made small; another man tells the first man to sit down and walks toward him threateningly. A man yells at his neighbor to turn down his music. A man makes a reference to mustard gas and the company that developed it wanting to do something to help mankind. A TV news cast reports that 17 small people were smuggled into the country in a TV box and that one woman was forcibly downsized. A man says, "I hate her guts." We hear that there is a large methane gas release in Antarctica and that it is only a matter of time before humans will become extinct. A woman says that another woman's husband's head exploded during a miniaturization procedure. A woman talks about having been punished for leading protests in her country; she says that she and her sister were sent to prison and that her sister died there. A man talks about the world purging itself of humankind. People talk about a group being a cult. A man predicts that a group of people will go insane and eat each other.
 A bus travels through a narrow tunnel that leads to an area surrounded by a tall wall and a fence (we see a dead bird stuck in netting over the area) with high-rise living quarters. A man is shown kneeling over a toilet and trying to make himself vomit; he puts his fingers down his throat, gags and spits but does not vomit (we see splatters of urine and hair on the toilet rim). A man wakes up on a floor after taking a drug at a party and we see saliva drooling from his mouth to the floor. A man walks through a meat processing plant (we see many cuts of beef on tables). A young boy is shown with a large rash on his back and abdomen and a man says that it is likely ringworm. A man spits (we see goo). A teenage boy has a red sore on his lip.

PROFANITY 7 - About 24 F-words, 2 sexual references, 4 scatological terms, 3 anatomical terms, 3 mild obscenities, name-calling (lazy, freaks, American, pathetic, idiot, ungrateful, stupid, crazy, selfish, abusers), exclamations (oh gosh), 1 religious profanity (GD), 9 religious exclamations (e.g. Thank God, Oh My God, Jesus, Thank You Jesus, and people sing in a church). [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - A man gives a woman an injection (presumably for pain), a needle is pressed into a man's arm to prepare for an IV, a woman gives another woman 4 Percocet pills for pain, people at a party are shown smoking something that could have been a drug, a woman steals many vials of prescription medication (mostly pain pills), and a man swallows a blue capsule at a party (we see him hallucinating later). People in a bar/restaurant are shown with glasses of beer and wine and one man drinks from his beer, many people are shown with bottles and glasses of beer as well as glasses of wine at a party and one woman orders a gin and tonic, people at a party are shown holding and drinking alcoholic beverages, several people drink beer and wine in a bar, people drink beer and wine at a party, several huge bottles of vodka are shown being pulled behind a boat on a float, a man and woman drink wine with dinner, a man drinks from a large bottle of champagne, men drink beer from bottles while playing pool, and a bottle of champagne is shown next to a woman in a bathtub. People at a party are shown smoking cigarettes, a man smokes a cigar, and a man smokes a pipe.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Over population, helping mankind, climate change, Fibromyalgia, disappointment, lost dreams, wanting more, debt, happiness, human rights, divorce, extinction, survival, Mother Nature.

MESSAGE - The human impact on the planet is catastrophic and irreversible.

Special Keywords: S6 - V4 - P7 - MPAAR

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A CAVEAT: We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and some of our early standards were not as stringent as they are now. We therefore need to revisit many older reviews, especially those written prior to 1998 or so; please keep this in mind if you're consulting a review from that period. While we plan to revisit and correct older reviews our resources are limited and it is a slow, time-consuming process.

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