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America's Heart and Soul | 2004 | PG | - 3.3.1

Documentary filmmaker Louis Schwartzberg travels America from shore to shore, photographing the landscape and celebrating ordinary people whose lives are devoted to their distinct passions: A black woman who sings gospel, a blind man who climbs mountains, a dairy farmer who's a part-time actor in community theater, an ex-convict who became the captain of America's Olympic boxing team, a man who loves shooting stuff with a cannon, and other busy individualists. With Roudy Roudebush, Ann Savoy, Marc Savoy, Mosie Burks and Minnie Bates Yancey. [1:24]

SEX/NUDITY 3 - A man and a woman kiss. Men and women do salsa dancing with suggestive, sensual moves; while dancing women wear tiny costumes that reveal cleavage, bare abdomens, bare thighs and bare buttocks (in a thong). Women swoon over young men singing on a stage. We see a portrait of a nude woman exposing bare breasts, back, and buttock. A woman in a short skirt does a flip and we see ruffled pants under her skirt.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 3 - A bicycle messenger swerves in and out of speeding city traffic, he holds onto a taxi and is pulled along, and he slams a taxi door as it begins to open in front of him. We see a funeral procession and hear that the man being buried was murdered. A man talks about having to attend the funerals of young men who have been murdered. A man talks about having committed armed robbery. A man fires a cannon into inanimate objects: a TV, through wooden boards, into a car, etc. An alligator growls and hisses in a swamp. A man has a scarred face and we hear that he was burned in an oil rig accident. An aerobatic pilot flies dangerous looking stunts in her plane. People climb rock walls then dangle, twirl and dance from ropes high in the air. A man dressed as Dracula in a stage play approaches a woman's neck to bite her.


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LANGUAGE 1 - 1 mild obscenity.


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SUBSTANCE USE - People are shown drinking alcohol.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - America as the land of opportunities, success and failure, fame, inspiration, community, disabilities, gaining strength from nature, alcoholism, passion, crime, coal mining, mill closings, competition, craftsmanship, miracles, eccentricity, cowboys, progress, slavery, diversity, the Appalachia, farming conditions, simple life.

MESSAGE - Cherish your freedom and appreciate what you have; and find your passion.

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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