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Ben Is Back | 2018 | R | – 2.3.8

Why is “Ben Is Back” rated R? The MPAA rating has been assigned for “language throughout and some drug use.” The Kids-In-Mind.com evaluation includes a physical altercation that ends with a punch in the face, references to sex in exchange for drugs, opioid addiction and its effects on family and loved ones, discussions of the death of people addicted to opioids and rehab, and over 30 F-words. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.”


content-ratingsA young man (Lucas Hedges) returns home from drug rehab and tries to stay clean and while his family struggles to welcome him, his mother (Julia Roberts) refuses to give up on him. Also with Courtney B. Vance, Kathryn Newton, Rachel Bay Jones, David Zaldivar, Mia Fowler and Jakari Fraser. Directed by Peter Hedges. [Running Time: 1:43]

Ben Is Back SEX/NUDITY 2

 – A young man talks about having “an arrangement” with his history teacher for drugs (possible sexual activity is implied). A young man talks about waking up with erections now that he is not using drugs.
 We see a photo of a woman wearing a camisole that reveals cleavage.
 A woman hands her son a cup and tells him to provide a urine sample for drug testing; she looks away and tells him that she won’t look at his privates (we see him from the back with nothing seen or heard).


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Ben Is Back VIOLENCE/GORE 3

 - A young man is shown unconscious and his skin and lips are tinged blue; a woman gives him a drug trying to revive him and then does mouth-to-mouth and he starts breathing again. A young man chases another young man out of a diner, he shoves him against a wall and into a pile of garbage bags and the young man on the ground gets up and punches the other young man in the face and then runs away. A man slams a passenger car window and pounds on the hood of the car as a woman and her son speed away.
 A young man speeds away from a gas station leaving his mother inside alone and with no ride. A woman takes her son to a cemetery and asks him where he wants to be buried. A woman pounds on a fitting room door and yells obscenities at her son behind the door before they are asked to leave the store. A family returns home form a performance and finds their house has been broken into; their Christmas tree is tipped over, the glass of a door is broken and their dog is missing. A young man says that his mother found him upside down on the stairs with a needle in his arm and that his dog was trying to keep him awake. A woman confronts a doctor about prescribing drugs to her son at the age of 14 and says that she hopes he dies a horrible death. A woman speaks to her son sternly and gives him rules for remaining home for 24 hours before returning to a rehab facility. A young man is agitated when he goes into his attic and says that he used to hide his drug stash there. A young man seems nervous when he sees another young man in a shopping mall. A young man talks about his history teacher having an unlimited supply of "oxy" and other opioids. A young man and his mother argue in several scenes; the young man shoves his mother during one argument trying to get her to leave him. A young man twitches and complains of being sick as he pleads for money so he can buy drugs. A woman walks alone in a dark alley and finds her son's phone in a garbage dumpster.
 A young man says, "The last time I didn't help someone, they died." A young man tells another young man, "I thought you were dead." A man says of his step-son, "If he were black he would be in jail by now." A young man says, "You're still scared of me," to his family. When a young man doesn't remember a young woman, she tells him, "You were my dealer." As a young man and his mother drive past houses, he points a house where he "used," and one that he robbed. A young man says that he got a young woman hooked and we understand that she is dead. A woman tells another woman, "You can't help them. But you would never forgive yourself for not trying."
 A woman hands her son a cup and tells him to provide a urine sample for drug testing. A young man talks about people in a car flatulating repeatedly. A young man talks about being able to defecate regularly now that he is not using drugs.


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Ben Is Back LANGUAGE 8

 - About 31 F-words and its derivatives, 22 scatological terms (1 mild), 3 anatomical terms, 2 mild obscenities, name-calling (liar, phony, stupid, junkie, drug addict), exclamations (shut-up, freaking out), 4 religious profanities, 19 religious exclamations (e.g. Oh My God, God, Jesus, Heaven Help You, Holy [scatological term deleted]). | profanity glossary |


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Ben Is Back SUBSTANCE USE

 - A woman puts prescription medications from a medicine cabinet in a bag and hides them in a closet, a young woman tells a young man that he was her dealer, many people using drugs stand around barrel fires and seem high, a young man delivers money to a drug dealer and returns to another dealer with drugs (the dealer tastes the drugs and gives the delivery person a packet of powder), and a young man says that he got a young woman hooked. A young man smokes from a vaping device in a few scenes (outside and in a car).


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Ben Is Back DISCUSSION TOPICS

 - Drug addiction, the opioid crisis, guilt, honesty, giving up on people, fear, truth, trust, support groups, rehab.

Ben Is Back MESSAGE

 - Opioid addiction affects not only the addict but the whole family.

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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We are a totally independent website with no connections to political, religious or other groups & we neither solicit nor choose advertisers. You can help us keep our independence with a donation.

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