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Flatliners [2017] [PG-13] - 5.6.5



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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 medical student (Ellen Page) persuades four classmates to experiment with dying and returning to life by using hospital equipment without permission. What they find is not what they expected when their sins come back to haunt them. Also with Diego Luna, Nina Dobrev, James Norton, Kiersey Clemons and Kiefer Sutherland. Directed by Niels Arden Oplev. [1:50]

SEX/NUDITY 5 - A close-up of a woman shows her upper chest bouncing hard and fast under her sweaty face; the camera cuts to the head and shoulders of a man below her, smiling until the woman's mother knocks loudly on the door and the man exits, fully dressed while the woman wears a V-necked long robe that reveals cleavage. In a brief hallucination, we see a sweaty woman with bare shoulders bouncing up and down on an MRI screen as a technician calls her [sexual reference deleted].
 A man and a woman kiss passionately, stop, and the woman kisses him again for several seconds before the man sets her on a countertop, they remove their tops (we see his bare chest and back and her bra, which reveals cleavage), and she unhooks the bra and the scene ends (we see her bare back from behind and sex is implied). A nude man and woman lie on a couch and she is on top and slightly behind him; we see bare lower legs, a blanket, and one of her arms and face, along with his bare chest and side to the hip; we see his bare chest, shoulders and back when he gets up.
 A man meets an old girlfriend and we see a 6-year-old boy that we learn is the man's child. A woman says during a flatlining session that she saw pure energy that was kind of sexual.
 A doctor puts on gloves and as a joke pulls the blanket off a male patient whose lower legs are now bare; the doctor reaches up under the man's gown and says he needs to do a testicular examination and the patient yells until a nurse comes in angrily and tells the doctor (he's a student), to stop.
 A teen girl's waist-to-head nude photo on a laptop shows her hand and arms in front of her breasts, but we see the under-curve of one breast. A man strips to his boxers (his bare chest, abdomen, back and legs are shown) and a woman pulls off her top to reveal a sports bra and cleavage; they run outside into a snowy street. Three college-age women wear tight sports bras that reveal cleavage. In several different scenes a woman wears a bra that bares her abdomen and cleavage, a V-neck top that reveals some cleavage, and a tight one-piece swimsuit that bares some jiggling cleavage as well as fully bare legs up to high-rise leg openings, along with a partially bare buttock.

VIOLENCE/GORE 6 - A woman sees her dead sister several times; during one scene, a radio turns on twice by itself, the ghost burns crayon pictures in a set of candle flames, it chases the woman all over her apartment until she runs out onto the fire escape and the ghost pushes her over the side and we see her lying face down below, dead, with no blood showing. A man is startled by the image of a woman and falls off his yacht and into the water; he swims to a dock, puts his hand up onto it and a large knife stabs through his hand to pin it to the wood (we see a little blood) as he screams in pain and then wears a large bandage in several scenes.
 Two men and two women find another woman dead on an MRI table in a basement with her eyes open, staring and the time shows she is dead for four minutes; the team begins chest compressions, intubation, and injections with no success until a man takes a very large syringe of yellow fluid and injects it into the heart as blood wells up, he applies defib paddles as her back arches and she jerks, while in her dead mind, she is floating under water, struggling and survives and in real time, she wakes up (she holds her chest in pain and groans, but is OK).
 An extended flatline scene shows a woman fitted with a headset and electronic sensors on her shoulders and across her abdomen as she injects her IV with an anesthetic; another woman and a man argue as the first woman falls asleep, the man shocks her with defib paddles to kill her and they cover her with a cooling blanket, slide her into an MRI machine and record for 60 seconds; they pull her out, start chest compressions, use a warming blanket, argue, yell, inject epinephrine into her IV line, intubate, use a breathing "bag" to breathe for her, and paddle-shock her four times before she awakens gasping and coughing as they pull out the intubation line (her body jumps and her back arches sharply each time).
 A woman drives erratically, running through the metal fence around an outdoor café, hurting no one, but continuing down the road with the hallucination that two large hands are suffocating her with a plastic bag over her face. A woman drives erratically through a high-rise parking garage, breaks through the exit gate, runs over a median, and swerves in and out of traffic.
 Four people wear headsets lined with sensors as they lie on an MRI gurney one at a time and allow their hearts to be stopped; they hallucinate visions of living and deceased people and awaken to say they enjoyed the drug-like "rush" and powerful feelings of near-death experiences (please see the Substance Use category for more details); a woman spends increasing amounts of time with her heart stopped and has waking hallucinations every day.
 In a scene and a flashback, a teen girl drives a car with her younger sister and a boy in the backseat as the driver pulls out a flip phone, opens and stares at it before crashing through a railing loudly and flips her station wagon over a railing and into a river, where it sinks upside down; the driver surfaces, sputtering and screaming as a man swims towards her. During a hallucination, a woman sees a wrecked car on a pavement, smashed in with all the glass cracked and she looks in a window to see her dead sister floating face up with her eyes open, in water and a hand smacks the glass from the inside the car and the woman runs and awakens. We see a woman on a cellphone video talking to someone who is not there and then screaming very loudly for several seconds. A woman hallucinates several times about swimming in a competition pool in a swimsuit and then in a jacket for work, eyes open and drowning. In two flatline sessions, a woman is trapped in an old warehouse with an empty gurney that suddenly has a body on it under a dirty tarp; in the second experience, she lifts the tarp to see the bloody, burned male corpse as it quickly reaches up to choke her and she finds herself strapped with heavy leathers to a gurney pushed by the corpse before the straps unbuckle and something throws her against a mirrored wall, shattering it to pieces and something tries to drown her in a large tub and she struggles; then something pulls her along a hallway by her feet as a huge, dark, roiling cloud envelopes her and fills the screen. A man hears a baby crying in a yacht's window seat and tears it apart to find nothing under a blanket except ropes, he hears the voice in a radio and rips it out of the wall, cabinet doors slam open and he hears the voice. In several scenes a man sees the image of a ragged woman crying on a bunk in the boat, standing in an alley, standing right behind him three times, touching his back, and riding on the back of his motorcycle before changing to mist. A woman sees something moving behind a shower curtain, but nothing is there. A woman sees something moving under a sheet stretched over a bathtub, and lifts it, but nothing is there. A woman hallucinates that a dead woman calls her and murmurs to her and she sees the word "murderer" written across stainless steel morgue cabinets in blood. A woman hallucinates being trapped in a morgue cold-room and when she looks in we see a bloody, burned male corpse sit up and she screams and rushes back into the elevator, finding herself in a hospital corridor. A woman hallucinates a video of her face and shoulders bouncing in a sex act (please see the Sex/Nudity category for more details) on an MRI screen and runs into a hospital corridor that goes dark; she enters an elevator car without a roof as it moves itself and she cries until it stops at a dark, filthy, and decayed classroom in which she hears laughing voices.
 During a flatline session, we see through the participant's eyes as she leaves her body, sees bloody heart surgery, blood drops on a floor, and we see the city lights at night as she flies around town; she flies into a church through a stained-glass window and stops at a bridge over a river where she walks in a starry sky and touches round stars before she awakens. During a flatline scene, the participant sees a hallucination of a shock wave blowing a man and a woman in the room across the room with fragments of broken medical equipment. In a flatline session, a woman sees herself in high school, as her mother angrily berates her, ordering her to do well enough to become a doctor. In a flatline session, a man seems to ride a motorcycle along an empty street while wearing no helmet with a woman on the back of the cycle; before coming to, the street darkens, and he hears voices calling from an upper story of a building. During a flatline session, a woman sees a yellow light and then experiences her life as a child winning horse-riding ribbons, playing a cello recital, and swimming at a competition. An MRI scan shows small lightning bolts in the frontal cortex and the amygdala among multicolor brain fibers after death. We see skull X-rays and photos of brain scans in several scenes. We see a misty scene of a graveyard twice and a blurry casket on a floor.
 A medical student tells four other med students that purposely having near-death experiences "makes you dead." A woman tells friends that haunting will kill them all. A woman says that she accidentally killed a patient and another student tells her that he found that she had changed autopsy records to cover her mistake. A woman cries in a library and a hospital corridor.
 A hospital ward is filled with neurological patients with their eyes vacant and staring and all wearing oxygen nose clips; one admits to a doctor that she may have had an out of body experience (no details). Two dozen students meet with a neurologist who is angry with them and smacks his cane loudly onto the table, startling them. A man at a party kicks down part of a wall and a woman wearing boxing gloves punches down another part of it.

PROFANITY 5 - 3 F-words (one of them is whispered), 8 sexual references, 3 scatological terms, 3 anatomical terms, 4 mild obscenities, name-calling (country club doctors, rich kids, crazy, moron, stupid, weird), 2 religious profanities (GD), 8 religious exclamations (e.g. Oh My God, My God, God Knows What, Jesus, Jesus Christ, I'm Jesus, Holy [scatological term deleted]). [profanity glossary]

SUBSTANCE USE - Artificially inducing near-death experiences is used as a drug to induce a "rush" sensation several times, a medical student says the experiences should be sold as a drug, large injections of Propofol (an anesthetic) and epinephrine are given through an IV line to two women, a large injection of a yellow fluid is given into a woman's heart, a woman mentions that a patient died from receiving three drugs that should not be used together, a man carries a thermos full of Mountain Dew and Haldol (he does not drink it), a man says that he administered Ativan to a patient to save her life, and a nurse mentions that she needs morphine for a patient (we do not see it). A man at a bar drinks from a glass of beer and a woman sips a short cocktail, men and women at a bar drink from beer bottles while other men and women only hold beer bottles, men and women on a dock by a river and standing around a bonfire are seen drinking from beer bottles or holding beer bottles, an apartment party scene features men and women drinking shots and dancing, a banquet scene shows men and women drinking champagne and we see four bottles of wine and three bottles of champagne at a serving counter where a woman pours several glasses of wine, and two men and two women drink a toast of clear liquor shots to a departed friend.

DISCUSSION TOPICS - Life and death, accidents, near-death experiences, the afterlife, risk-taking, using a phone while driving, distracted driving, curiosity, danger, foolishness, unapproved human medical experiments, speaking with the dead, fear, hauntings, hallucinations, listening to authority, making amends, accepting responsibility, reconciliation, growing up, friendship, being able to count on someone.

MESSAGE - Playing with near-death experiences is dangerous.

Special Keywords: S5 - V6 - P5 - MPAAPG-13

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