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Blinded by the Light | 2019 | PG-13 | – 3.4.4

content-ratingsWhy is “Blinded by the Light” rated PG-13? The MPAA rating has been assigned for “thematic material and language including some ethnic slurs.” The Kids-In-Mind.com evaluation includes a few kissing scenes, an implied sex scene and some cleavage revealing outfits; several racially motivated acts of violence with bloody faces resulting after one encounter, and several arguments; and some strong language including several derogatory racial references. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.”


Inspired by a true story and set in 1987, during an economically and racially bleak time in Britain: A teen (Viveik Kalra) of Pakistani descent dreams of getting out of his small town and away from his traditional family life and finds hope and inspiration through the music of Bruce Springsteen. Also with Kulvinder Ghir, Meera Ganatra, Aaron Phagura, Dean-Charles Chapman, Nikita Mehta, Nell Williams, Tara Divina, Rob Brydon and Frankie Fox. Directed by Gurinder Chadha. [Running Time: 1:57]

Blinded by the Light SEX/NUDITY 3

 – A teen girl wearing a man’s type button up shirt (we see her bare legs to the upper thighs) answers a door and a teen boy with his shirt open (his bare chest and abdomen are seen) follows behind her (sex is implied).
 A teen boy and a teen girl kiss and lie on a sofa; the girls lies on top of the boy and they are interrupted when the boy’s sister enters the room then leaves and the couple continues to kiss. A teen boy and a teen girl kiss. A teen boy and a teen girl kiss and hug. A teen boy sings to a teen girl in a crowded market and imagines dancing with her as others dance around them. Many teenage boys and girls dance in a packed club with loud music.
 A teen boy tells a teen girl that another teen boy has never had a girlfriend and the girl asks, “Is it against your religion?” Two teenage boys talk about girls while one admires a girl walking away from them at a shopping mall food court.
 A teen girl wears a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage and bare legs to the mid thighs. A woman wears a low-cut top that reveals cleavage. A teen boy is shown shirtless and wearing boxers and we see his bare chest and abdomen. Teenage girls wear low-cut tops and dresses that reveal cleavage in a club.


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Blinded by the Light VIOLENCE/GORE 4

 – A large crowd of people march in a street and yell while others yell back at them; a family of people try to drive through the area but are stopped by police and when several men get out of the car two of the men are punched in the face by protesters (we see blood on their faces and heads); a teenage girl hits a protester on the head with a wooden stick attached to a sign (we do not see any injury).
 A man and his teenage son argue bitterly; they wrestle briefly and the man tears them up; the boy yells at the man, “I don’t want to be your son.” Three teenage boys tell two other teen boys to leave a table where they are sitting in a shopping mall food court; the two teens move to a different table and one of the other boys tells them, “I can still smell you,” so they move farther away; two of the boys then argue briefly over a VHS tape.
 A teen boy walks past a man painting a racial slur on a wall along with the letters “NF” [the British fascist organization National Front] and the man turns to spit at the teen (we see goo) and it splatters the boy’s face. Several grade school aged boys urinate through a mail slot and into the front hallway of a house (we see the urine pooled on the floor) while yelling racial slurs and we hear that this happens often. We hear a news report that a severed pig’s head was found hanging on a mosque’s minaret and protesters march in the streets calling for Pakistani people to leave the town and country. Newsreel-type footage shows a bobby with a bloody head and face as a protest march takes place near him. People marching in a street carry banners with swastikas and perform the Nazi salute.
 A teen boy becomes angry and yells at his sister. A husband and his wife argue briefly about their financial situation. A woman chases a teen boy in a square and swings her shopping bags at him after he takes her daughter by the hand and dances with her briefly. A teen boy pounds on the steering wheel of a car and yells. A man yells at a teenage boy and a teenage girl kissing on the sidewalk and asks if they “Have no shame at all?” and that this is “Very bad behavior.” A man yells toward his teenage son as he walks onto a school campus filled with students, “Stay away from the girls. Follow the Jews.” A boy writes in a journal about the Russians being in Afghanistan, the Cold War, and Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. We read racially charged graffiti painted on walls and houses. We hear about high jobless rates. A teenage boy talks about making loads of money, kissing a girl and getting out of his small town. A teen boy talks about tribes of people in his school and that he has no tribe (he sits alone in the lunchroom). A man talks about being the first Pakistanis in the neighborhood. We hear that a man is fired from his job due to downsizing and a woman takes in more sewing to bring in more income for the family. A man cries from frustration.
 Several people push a car when it won’t start. A teen boy goes outside during a storm and the wind blows papers out of his hands and through the air. A woman sells her jewelry for money to pay bills. A woman smears a thick paste onto a man’s hair to dye it. Several scenes show people standing in line for work and being turned away.


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Blinded by the Light LANGUAGE 4

 – 1 sexual reference, 8 scatological terms, 6 mild obscenities, 11 derogatory terms for Pakistani people (additional references are painted on placards during a protest march), 2 derogatory terms for black people, name-calling (dump, scum, rubbish, nonsense, witch, Tory traitors, selfish, wanker, little sod, little devil, prat), 2 religious exclamations (God, Thank God). | profanity glossary |


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Blinded by the Light SUBSTANCE USE

 – A man remarks about the existence of drugs in America as a warning to his teenage son. People are shown drinking and smoking in a bar.


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Blinded by the Light DISCUSSION TOPICS

 – Pakistani traditions, dreams, fitting in, making a difference, extremist political parties, Fascism, xenophobia, bigotry, racism, Vietnam, politics, Bruce Springsteen, disappointment, family, idols.

Blinded by the Light MESSAGE

 – Success without having significant others doesn’t mean as much.

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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