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Big Sur | 2013 | R | - 6.5.3

A visualization of Jack Kerouac's novel "Big Sur," as the author and three companions travel to a cabin in Big Sur. With Jean-Marc Barr, Kate Bosworth, Josh Lucas, Patrick Fischler, Anthony Edwards and Radha Mitchell. Directed by Michael Polish. [1:21]

SEX/NUDITY 6 - We see a man and a woman having sex and the man's bare buttocks are visible as he thrusts on top of the woman (her bare breasts are visible while under the man) and the couple pulls apart as the woman's young son asks them a question and the man is disturbed by the boy's presence; the woman answers the boy's question and they continue to kiss passionately.
 We see a man and woman kissing passionately in bed. A man and a woman kiss passionately in bed (the man is shirtless with his bare chest and back visible while the woman appears to be naked but no nudity is visible); they are interrupted when the man places a phone call.
 A man picks up a woman and spins her around, kissing her; the man puts her down as a second man enters the room and kisses the woman passionately, lowering her onto a sofa as they kiss (the first man leaves). A man and a woman kiss. A man kisses a woman's hands. A woman rubs her hands on a man's arms/chest.
 A man has a vivid dream of another man, face-down and nude (his bare buttocks are visible). We see a man in the shower (he is seen in profile and his bare chest is visible). We see a man wearing boxer-style underwear lower himself into a creek (his bare back and chest are visible). Several men and two women are wearing bathing suits (we see the bare chest and back of one) in a hot tub. We see a portion of a shirtless man's bare chest as he sits up from sleeping. We see a portion of a shirtless man's bare chest and shoulders as he sleeps.
 A man tells another man crudely that he is looking forward to the man meeting a woman, because she is very good at having sex. A man tells another man that after seeing a movie with his girlfriend that she had become interested in having sex with a little person. A man reads aloud a vaguely sexual poem about what is explained by a man's voiceover to be about the man and his wife's body. A man's voiceover explains that he thinks he will be surrounded by women soon, despite being previously kicked out of the city by prostitutes. A woman tells a man that her husband had a mistress in another city and the man offers to become the woman's second husband. A man makes a brief remark about previously seeing "dancing girls"; a second man then asks the man if female nurses in a hospital are attractive and the man says "one." A man's voiceover explains that he finds a woman with whom he is traveling to be "sexy."


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VIOLENCE/GORE 3 - We see a woman digging a pit and a man's voiceover explains that he believes the hole is large enough for a boy's body; we see a flash of the boy lying in the grave, but the boy is unharmed.
 We see a dead otter's body floating in the ocean and a man shouts that there is a dead otter in the ocean. A man is obviously upset when he discovers a dead mouse on a trail. A man's voiceover explains that he is going to visit another man at a tuberculosis hospital and the man is seen visiting a man in a wheelchair in a hospital.
 A man shouts at a woman. A man tells another man that his mother had written to say that his cat had died and the man's voiceover explains that he views the death of a cat like the death of a brother. A man remarks that a fish that had been caught by a man had all the feeling of death of mice and otters that he had previously seen dead. A man has a lucid dream where he imagines a woman and her young son dead; the woman and child are unharmed when the man awakens. A man's voiceover remarks that a woman will not commit suicide after the man apologizes to her for breaking her heart. A man's voiceover explains that he is having a mental breakdown after three weeks of being alone in the woods. A man's dramatic voiceover explains that he believes he would escape or die. A man's voiceover explains that a man had gotten money to pay for his house when his leg was broken trying to stop a train car. A man makes a remark about being "bound up" like constipation.
 A man stumbles as he tries to stand up from a chair; he stands up, unharmed but is obviously intoxicated.


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LANGUAGE 5 - About 3 F-words and its derivatives, 3 sexual references, 1 scatological term, 5 mild obscenities, name-calling (Romanian mad man, old [scatological term deleted], you look pretty awful, you've seen better days, mad, poor kid, neurotic, Crittenden), 1 religious profanity (GD), 5 religious exclamations (e.g. Oh God, My God).


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SUBSTANCE USE - A man's voiceover explains that another man had been in jail for two years for possession of marijuana. A man's voiceover describes a party as having "booze and pot and cigarettes," a man's voiceover explains that he is going with "no booze, no cigarettes" and not dealing with "drunks and junkies" while on a trip, a man declares that he had decided to become "bloody drunk" and we see him drinking many glasses of beer and liquor while toasting with other people, a man is seen on the ground of a hotel (obviously hung-over and surrounded by empty beer bottles), several men drink liquor directly from bottles while on the beach (they are also smoking cigarettes), a man drinks liquor from a large glass, several men drink liquor directly from the bottle and we then hear a voiceover discussing alcoholic's inability to sleep after days of drinking. A man smokes cigarettes throughout the movie.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - The Beat Generation, Jack Kerouac, depression, disappointment, escapism, fidelity in a marriage, Big Sur novel, disillusionment, eternity.

MESSAGE - Despite his huge success, Jack Kerouac was a very lonely and depressed person.

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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