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American Assassin | 2017 | R | - 6.8.8

A man (Dylan O'Brien) determined to avenge the murder of his fiancée joins an elite counter-terrorism group to track down those responsible and he is trained as an assassin by a former Navy SEAL (Michael Keaton). Also with David Suchet, Sanaa Lathan, Taylor Kitsch, Scott Adkins, Shiva Negar and Charlotte Vega. Directed by Michael Cuesta. Several lines of dialogue are spoken in Turkish with English subtitles and others are written in Arabic with English subtitles; a few lines are spoken in Arabic with no translation. [1:51]

SEX/NUDITY 6 - A woman is shown topless as she puts on makeup in a mirror (we see her bare breasts and upper abdomen). A couple of beach sequences show men and women wearing swimwear that reveal cleavage, bare abdomens, chests, backs and legs to the hips. A man is shown bare-chested in bed (we see his bare shoulders, chest, abdomen and back). A woman wearing a bikini is seen on a video (cleavage, bare shoulders and abdomen are shown). A woman wears a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage. A man takes off his shirt and we see him wearing a tank T-shirt. A shirtless man is shown wearing boxer shorts and we see his bare chest, abdomen, back and legs as he crawls in a hallway. A nude male statue is shown in the background (genitals are visible). A man is shown shirtless as a woman cleans up a wound on his side (we see his bare chest, abdomen and shoulder).
 A man proposes to a woman and they kiss and hug.
 A woman tells a man, "We get to play lovers," in an undercover operation.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 8 - A man is shown with a bloody head wound and a bruised eye, and we also see that one of his arms is tightened into a vice while his other arm is wrapped with a chain and he is tortured by another man; the other man pulls out two of the man's fingernails (we see the tool pull the nails out of the fingers and we see the bloody nail bed as the man yells), the torturer slashes the man on the chest, then burns him with a blow torch (we see blood and scorch marks), and then throws battery cables into a basin of water that the bound man stands in (the man thrashes and his eyes roll back in his head as we hear crackling of electricity). A man bites of part of the ear of another man and chews on it before spitting it out with blood (the injured man has a very bloody ear and blood runs down his neck).
 Many men with guns enter a beach and shoot randomly, hitting many people and we see blood spray and wounds bleeding as the victims fall and are thrown; a woman is shot in the chest, falls to the ground and is shot again in the back as a wounded man tries to reach her (we see blood on their wounds).
 A man is shot in the head (we see a bloody wound), and several others are shot by several armed men that burst into a building where a man is being held and questioned. A man shoots in a crowded restaurant and several people are struck (we see blood splatter as they fall). A man is stabbed in the chest and falls to the floor dead (we see a lot of blood on his clothing). A man stabs a dead man repeatedly and screams. A man sells another man plutonium in a van; police interrupt them and one man shoots the police officers and three other men in the van (blood splatters), and he leaves the van and walks through a crowded market place as other men in the market shoot at him. A man shoots several men in a room and holds his gun on another man who is holding a woman; the remaining people fight with punches and kicks, more gunfire is exchanged, the woman stabs a man in the foot (blood pours from the wound) and the stabbed man is later kicked in the foot where the knife is still protruding).
 A man breaks into an apartment and exchanges gunfire with guards inside; a woman is shot (we see blood on her chest and robe), the man fights a guard and they slash each other with shards of broken glass (blood sprays), and the man retrieves a gun and shoots another man in the head twice. A man holds a gun on a woman as another gunman approaches; the woman grabs the gun of the man holding her and shoots herself under the chin (we see her dead with a bloody wound).
 A man speeds a car toward three gunmen shooting at him; the car crashes into the men and we see blood splatter and one man crashes through the windshield and into the passenger side of the car, dead and bloody; the car crashes into pipes and when the car explodes, the pipes explode filling a tunnel with flames. Two men fight on a speeding boat and they are thrown into the air when the boat lurches over waves; one man pins the other and stabs him in the throat (we see a lot of blood as the man gags and spurts).
 A nuclear bomb explodes under water and we see a giant mushroom cloud followed by a shock wave that blows the rigging off several Navy vessels nearby, a helicopter in flight is thrown and nearly crashes, a giant wave rolls through the water and large Navy ships are nearly capsized.
 A man slams a wall near a woman's head and they argue; they fight and he holds her under water until she loses consciousness. Several men train for hand-to-hand combat and with knives; they wrestle and grapple and slash at each other and one man holds another man on the ground with a knife to his throat (one man ends up spitting blood). A man wraps a cord around another man's neck and chokes him as the other man struggles (he coughs and gags when he is released). Several men in a training scenario shoot (without live ammo) at people that they identify as targets and they each randomly get shocked by vests they are wearing; one man is shocked repeatedly and he falls to the floor, still shooting the target. An MMA training facility shows people sparring; one man punches another in the face and the punched man takes the attacker to the mat and puts him in a hold until another man yells for him to let him go; the second man is thrown out of the facility. A man punches another man in the face repeatedly and the second man tackles the first and they wrestle in mud until a third man shoots a gun over their heads and the two men fighting stop (one man spits blood). A man holds a knife to the throat of a guard. Several people take target practice at a shooting range and one man walks onto the target area causing sirens to blare. A man punches a heavy bag and practices throwing knives in his apartment; one knife hits a picture of a man hanging on a door. A man is chased by dogs in a car lot; the man breaks a sunroof and hides inside a car, then entices the dogs into the car and closes them in. A car is T-boned by another car (we see the crumpled cars).
 A man meets another man and three others approach him as the first man searches him for weapons; a bag is placed over his head and he is lead to a car and we later see him tied to a chair and bound with tape around his wrists as a man questions him. A man binds and gags another man in a car and leaves him in the backseat. A man crawls away from a gunman and pleads for his life; we later see the man bound and in the trunk of a car.
 Several men with guns burst into a barracks where men are sleeping and shoot and shout, "You're dead" (no one is injured). A man berates a man as he prepares to train him. We see a terrorist recruitment ad with men talking about "killing the infidels." A man says, "Some people deserve to die in the worst way possible." We hear that a man's parents died in a car accident when he was 14 years old. A man says, "I'm gonna kill that [mild obscenity deleted]." A woman tells a man, "I know what it's like to lose people you love." A man says, "Thousands of Americans are going to burn."
 A man is shocked a few times during a training exercise and he vomits (we see goo leave his mouth). A woman is shown with a cut on her nose and a bruised eye after a violent encounter with several men. A man is shown with many lash scars on his back and chest presumably from torture. Several people are shown with bandages and leg braces in a rehab facility.


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LANGUAGE 8 - About 39 F-words and its derivatives, 1 sexual reference, 15 scatological terms, 7 anatomical terms, 15 mild obscenities, name-calling (mad dog, darling, stupid, ghost, crazy, bastard), exclamations (shut-up), 5 religious profanities, 10 religious exclamations (e.g. Oh My God, For God's Sake, Christ, Jesus Christ, God Bless [F-word deleted] America).


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SUBSTANCE USE - A man smokes cigarettes in a couple of scenes, men smoke hookah pipes in a café scene, and a woman asks a man about being "on the patch" (presumably the nicotine patch).


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Murder, death of parents, death of loved ones, martyrdom, trust, revenge, terrorism, counter terrorism, plutonium, nuclear weapons, the Persian Gulf War, Cold War, Iran, Iraq, Hamas, CIA, FBI, arms dealers.

MESSAGE - Revenge can be a strong motivator to right wrongs.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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