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Balls of Fury | 2007 | PG-13 | - 4.5.4

Christopher Walken stars as the mysterious leader of an organized crime family, who also happens to be a fan of extreme ping-pong. He therefore organizes a competition pitting the best ping-pong players in the world in sudden death matches, where "death" is meant literally. In order to catch him dealing arms, the F.B.I. recruits a former ping-pong champion who has not competed since his father was brutally murdered when he was a young boy. Also with Dan Fogler, George Lopez, Maggie Q and Thomas Lennon. Directed by Robert Ben Garant. [1:30]

SEX/NUDITY 4 - There is an ongoing gag about many men who are held prisoner and forced to become sex slaves: A woman offers a man "courtesans of pleasure," and offers a man a choice, describing them as experts in "sensual and erotic arts"; these men then enter the room. In a related scene we hear a squeaking bed from a neighboring room, a man says, "someone's getting lucky," and another man (he is blind) coos after a night of sexual pleasure (not knowing that he apparently had had sex with another man).
 A man and a woman kiss in a few scenes. Several men crowd around a man and try to kiss him (we see a couple of kisses on the cheek). A woman kisses a man on the cheek a couple of times. A man and a woman hug, they kiss and she is shown with her legs wrapped around his waist.
 A man leaves another man's room in the morning and others outside the room assume that they had sex the night before (one says they did not).
 A man squeezes a woman's clothed buttock. A singing and dancing sequence features men and women dancing together, and a woman sticks her tongue out suggestively toward a long pole she carries with her. A man licks a small trophy suggestively while taunting another man.
 A man talks about a prostitute and that she "laughs at you when you are naked" and that "she is the only one that I can afford." A man tells another man that he had sex with his mother. A man tells another man that he practices ping-pong in front of a mirror "in the nude." A woman watching a champion ping-pong player, who happens to be a young boy, calls out to him and says, "I love you." A man watching a woman play ping-pong makes a crude sexual remark. A woman playing ping-pong with a man says, "watch your balls, not my boobs." A woman says that men tell her "give me a hand with my balls" while playing ping-pong.
 Two men apparently have tracking devices inserted into their rectums (we see them walking with an awkward gate).
 A woman wears low-cut and short outfits throughout the movie, which reveal cleavage, her bare abdomen, bare thighs and a small amount of her buttocks. A woman wears low-cut and skin tight outfits that reveal cleavage in several scenes. Two women wearing showgirl costumes that reveal cleavage, bare abdomens and bare thighs stand on a stage with a man. A woman's dress is slit up the side to the hip and reveals her bare thigh and hip. A man is shown bare-chested, a man pulls off his pants and is wearing a skin-tight, spandex outfit underneath, and a man pulls off his pants and falls on the floor (he has shorts on underneath). We see several men wearing sumo belts that reveal bare chests and buttocks.
 A clothed man makes his pectoral muscles move up and down.

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VIOLENCE/GORE 5 - Several men are poisoned by a dart that is shot into their necks (we see them become stiff and collapse to the floor and see their bodies dragged away on a blanket). A dart is shot at a man, and he deflects it with a ping-pong paddle, propelling it at a woman and striking her in the head (she falls to the floor dead).
 A man wearing a vest that administers electric shocks is shocked, he falls off a bridge into water, the water glows and we see his body twitch and float face down.
 A man is pushed into an elevator shaft (we hear him yell, and we hear a thud). A blind man stumbles and falls into an elevator shaft (we hear that he is injured but not dead).
 A man breaks a man's arm by slamming it in a bathroom door (we hear a crack and the man yells in pain).
 A man and a woman fight, after he has squeezed her buttock, using punches and kicks; the woman then fights three more men until they all submit. A man and woman fight, she punches and kicks him repeatedly and pulls out two handfuls of his hair. A woman shoves a man against a wall and pushes a coat rack against his throat (he gags and turns red and she lets him go). A woman slams a man in the crotch with a ping-pong paddle (he moans). A young girl punches a man in the crotch twice (he falls to the floor moaning).
 A man is grabbed and dragged away by two men, one holds a long knife and we then read newspaper headlines about the man having been murdered. A man is struck repeatedly in the head by a ping-pong ball, he collapses and we hear that he died of a heart attack.
 A man shoots a gun in the air in a crowded room and other men begin firing their guns (we do not see anyone get struck). Men shoot at a helicopter in mid-air (it is not struck). A man wakes up yelling and another man shoots his gun at him several times hitting the headboard and scaring the man. A man with a gun threatens another man in a few scenes. A man accidentally shoots a gun into the ceiling and is grabbed by two other men.
 Two men wear wired vests that shock if a ball is not returned during a ping-pong match, and one man is shocked with increasing intensity (we hear the hum of electricity and he winces).
 A man dangles from a bridge over a river and then pulls himself back up. A man is carried into an alley and thrown into a garbage dumpster, and one of the assailants blows his nose into several dollar bills, throws them at the victim and spits on him.
 A man is locked into a meat locker with a carton of bees and a fly swatter: he swats frantically as they sting him and we see him with welts on his face later.
 A building explodes, we see flames and smoke and people running out screaming.
 A man breaks through a paper window and slams into iron bars on the other side and he falls back onto the floor. A blind man slams into a wooden beam and falls back onto the floor (he's OK). A man falls to the floor while trying to hit fast moving ping-pong serves.
 A man watching a woman play ping-pong makes a crude sexual remark and her uncle pinches the man's crotch with chopsticks (we hear a crunch, the man winces and after he is let go the man with the chopsticks continues to eat with them). A man with chopsticks sticks them up another man's nostrils, and then continues using them to eat.
 We see a room filled with weapons that are being prepared for sale. We see several urns apparently filled with the ashes of opponents who lost ping-pong matches.
 A man squishes a cricket in his hand, then wipes it on a place mat (we hear the squishing and see goo). A man shakes a box containing a cricket and another man looks inside the box and reports that it is dead. A man spits on a set of dog tags and throws them on the floor.
 Two men apparently have tracking devices inserted into their rectums (we see them walking with an awkward gate).
 There are several ping-pong matches shown where people play aggressively, angrily slamming the ball hard and perspiring heavily. Several men scream loudly when they are afraid in a couple of scenes.
 A boy crashes through a barrier and falls to the floor striking his head and he seems dazed. A man pulls off his pants and falls on the floor.
 A man starts a tournament with a speech about the matches being "sudden death." We hear that a man murdered another man and a woman. A man describes a vest that is wired to give electric shocks when a volley is not returned. We hear that a man's mother died when he was young.
 A man has many tattoos on his chest and arms. A man spits on a boy's hand. A boy sticks chewed chewing gum under a ping-pong table, and then a man does the same thing several more times.

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LANGUAGE 4 - 7 scatological terms (1 mild), 12 anatomical terms, 13 mild obscenities, name-calling (crazy, table jockey, round eye), 2 derogatory terms for Caucasians, 5 religious exclamations.

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SUBSTANCE USE - People are shown smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol in a few bar scenes, people are shown drinking alcohol with food, and a man drinks a beer. Several men are shown smoking cigarettes while playing cards and ping-pong, a man smokes cigarettes in several scenes, and a woman smokes a cigarette. A man inhales something from a medical-looking inhaler.

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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Death of a parent, murder of a parent, revenge, dreams, finishing something you start, organized crime, arms dealing, sportsmanship, competition, prostitution, sacrifice, self-doubt, conjoined twins, winning, losing, gambling, celebrity.
MESSAGE - You have to confront painful memories to overcome their effects.
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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