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Love in the Time of Cholera | 2007 | R | - 9.4.5

Adaptation of the Gabriel García Márquez novel of unrequited love set in Columbia during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. A young man falls deeply in love with a young woman, but is heartbroken when her father will not permit the match and she ends up marrying another man. The spurned lover vows to wait for her until her husband dies and ends up waiting for over 50 years, while in an effort to numb the pain he engages in numerous sexual encounters with women who mean nothing to him. With Javier Bardem, Giovanna Mezzogiorno, Benjamin Bratt, Catalina Sandino Moreno and John Leguizamo. Directed by Mike Newell. [2:19]

SEX/NUDITY 9 - A woman hugs a man, she begins to undress and talks about her husband having been dead for years; the man and the woman are then shown nude and having sex: we see him thrusting on top of her, her bare breasts and legs, as well as his bare buttocks, thighs and chest are visible, and they moan loudly -- the man's mother can hear them from downstairs.
 A man loosens a woman's dress, he caresses and kisses her back and shoulder, she pulls off her dress to reveal her bare breasts, she kisses him, and they fall to the floor where they have sex: we see him thrusting on top of her, she moans and screams, and her cat jumps on the man's bare buttocks and scratches him (we see his bare buttocks).
 A man and a woman have sex: she moans loudly, with a pacifier in her mouth, while he thrusts on top of her (her bare breasts and his bare buttocks are visible).
 A man and woman have sex against a wall close to where people are walking; she moans and he covers her mouth for fear of discovery.
 A man and a woman have sex in an office: she leans over a desk with her skirt hiked up, he thrusts from behind with his pants around his ankles (no flesh is really visible), and another man enters the room, but he then leaves and they continue.
 A man walks past the door of a cabin on a ship, he is grabbed and pulled inside by a woman (we do not see her), she unfastens his pants and thrusts on top of him, they moan, she finishes and pushes him back out of the room (he holds his hands over the front of his pants and then re-fastens them).
 An elderly woman removes her dress and stands in front of an elderly man (her bare breasts and abdomen are visible) and they lie in bed together (his bare chest is visible, he rolls on top of her, he thrusts and they moan.
 A young woman lies in a hammock with an older man, presumably after having had sex; the young woman is nude (her bare breasts and back are visible and he's wearing a shirt), she caresses the man's chest and asks him to have sex again (we see this scene twice).
 A husband (he's bare-chested) lies in bed waiting for his wife to join him; she climbs in bed, he caresses her breasts (they are not visible), he puts her hand under the sheets and below his waist and she talks about male genitals and not understanding how they work; he rolls over on top of her and the scene ends (it is implied that they have sex).
 A man and a young woman lie in bed nude together (his bare thigh and chest are visible and her bare breasts and shoulders), she caresses and kisses his chest, and he uses paint to write something on her abdomen with an arrow pointing down from her belly button.
 A young woman lies on a bed with her dressing gown open to reveal cleavage, a doctor examines her, he opens her gown to reveal her bare breasts, and he presses his ear against her bare breasts and back.
 Women in a brothel lean over a balcony and display their bare breasts to men gathered on the street below. Three women in a brothel caress and kiss a man and he takes them to a room (apparently for sex). Several women in a brothel are shown wearing low-cut dresses that reveal cleavage and they sit on men's laps and kiss.
 A man and a young woman come out from behind shrubs and it is implied that they have had sex.
 Two young women bathe in a large tub together (bare shoulders and arms are visible). We see a bare-chested man in a boxing ring. Women wear low-cut dresses that reveal cleavage in several scenes.
 A young woman in a carriage with a man complains about her boots being too tight, she removes them and the man removes his, she then complains about the hoop under her skirt being uncomfortable and he tells her to take it off while he covers his eyes; another young woman in the carriage shoves her to make her stop.
 A husband rolls toward his wife in bed and kisses her neck, she tells him she has her period and he stops. A husband and wife kiss. A man and a woman kiss. A man leans to kiss a woman and she tells him no.
 A young man is distracted by his love for a young woman and a man tells him to go to the "whore house" with him. A husband confesses to his wife that he is having an affair with another woman. A man keeps a journal of the many (over 600) sexual encounters he has had throughout his life. A young woman talks about wanting to devour a man with kisses. A woman talks about rumors about a man being a molester of young boys. A young woman confesses her love for a married man. A young man talks about losing his virginity "only for love." A man confesses his undying love for a woman and his vow of fidelity. A man asks for a father's permission to write to his daughter.
 A young man looks at a young woman and they exchange lingering glances. A young man and a young woman exchange love letters secretly.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 4 - A husband slashes the throat of his wife because she was unfaithful (we see the man holding the knife and pulling the woman's head back and we hear her scream).
 We see dead bodies with wriggling maggots on them, and we see piles of dead bodies in streets and on wagons and sick people with cholera in clinics (some are vomiting). We see many dead bodies on a ship that is flying a black flag indicating that those aboard have been infected with cholera.
 A man swings a strap (or a belt) toward his daughter, she cringes and hides behind a door, and he breaks a table.
 An elderly man climbs a ladder to reach a bird on a tree limb, he slips and falls to the ground, we hear a crunch and the man lies dead; his wife cries and tries to revive him. We see a dead man in a coffin at a funeral where people grieve.
 A woman is grabbed and forcibly placed onto a horse and sent away while another young woman screams and tries to reach her; a man pulls the young woman away and shoves her back inside a building.
 A woman runs screaming through a street where there are large explosions and people with guns threaten her (she is unharmed). A young man chases a carriage, climbs on the side and is thrown off and onto the ground (he is OK).
 A man comes home to find his mother dead (she's seated in a chair with her eyes open).
 A man's bare buttocks are scratched by a cat (a bit of blood is visible). Two cocks fight in a ring surrounded by people: we see the birds peck each other and we see blood on the feathers of one.
 A man threatens to shoot a young man if he does not leave his daughter alone. A man cries inconsolably after being denied by the woman he loves. A father yells at his daughter and she holds a knife to her own throat threatening to kill herself. A woman yells at a man and tells him to get out of her house.
 A husband says he thinks he is going to die and his wife says it is time. A woman talks about rumors about a man being a molester of young boys. A woman confronts her mother about being disgusted by her spending so much time with a man. A young man talks about a young woman's mother being dead.
 A young man vomits from anxiety (we see goo and hear gagging). A man vomits after having sex with a woman.


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LANGUAGE 5 - 1 F-word, 4 sexual references, 4 mild obscenities, name-calling (crazy), 3 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - Two women drink alcohol, a man and a woman drink alcohol, a man and a woman drink wine, and a man drinks alcohol and smokes a cigar. Two young women smoke cigarettes in several scenes, a man smokes cigarettes in several scenes, and a woman smokes cigarettes in a few scenes.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Love, heartbreak, grief, sex without love, infidelity, cholera, epidemics, pain of love and heartbreak, dementia.

MESSAGE - Love can withstand the test of time. Love is a state of grace, not the means to anything but an end in itself.

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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