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Paul | 2011 | R | - 5.5.10

Two English sci-fi fans (Simon Pegg and Nick Frost) make a pilgrimage to Comic Con and Nevada's Area 51, where they unexpectedly meet one of the legendary "grays," a real extraterrestrial (voiced by Seth Rogen). They agree to a road trip to help the alien escape to a desert meeting place, where his people will take him home, while being obstructed by an FBI Agent (Jason Bateman), Christians, the American government, and assorted others. Also with Kristen Wiig, Bill Hader, John Lynch, Jane Lynch, Sigourney Weaver and Blythe Danner. Directed by Greg Mottola. [1:44]

SEX/NUDITY 5 - A comic book cover features a green alien woman with three bare breasts and a cover with a male alien having three female breasts. Women wear extremely low-cut blouses that reveal substantial cleavage. A dozen women wear leather and wire bikinis with scarves around the waist, revealing abdomens and substantial cleavage. A woman wears a long robe that reveals substantial cleavage. Several women wear low-cut tops that reveal cleavage or short skirts revealing most of their thighs and legs. We see two men wearing bathrobes and we see one man's large, hairy abdomen. An alien is thin and very short, wearing only knee-length brown shorts.
 A woman grabs a man's crotch and he tells her to let go. An alien stands on an RV dashboard, pulls his shorts down and moons the car ahead of him. We hear a man unzip his pants below screen.
 A man and a woman kiss briefly three times.
 A man says he wants to have sex with a woman, but she declines and kicks him in the groin (please see the Violence/Gore category for more details). A space alien asks a man when was the last time he had sex (using crude terms) and the man replies that it was a sci-fi convention in 2008. A room service man asks if two men are on their honeymoon and they deny it. An alien, several men and a woman ask two men if they are gay and having anal and oral sex regularly; they deny it. An alien points to his posterior, and then grunts and groans to imply anal sex. Several men ask an alien if he is going to probe them with fingers or metal probes; the alien says this is a myth and goes on to say his entire race is bisexual. A short alien tells a man that alien penises are larger than those of humans. A woman says "penises" several times. A woman asks a man and an alien if since there is no God, can she curse, drink, and fornicate as much as she wants and they say yes. A woman in a diner remarks about a book, "A woman and a machine? I heard that," implying sex and she mentions that one should be able to have a close encounter (sex is implied). A woman looks at a younger woman seated beside her in an audience and says she'd enjoy seeing her with her clothes off. An inscribed photo of President George H.W. Bush given to a male FBI agent reads, "To the best invasion I ever performed."
 A man draws an alien with an obscene hand gesture and the drawing is shown several times.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 5 - Two soldiers receive chest wounds and drop dead (there's no blood); a third is shot and struck in the leg as blood splatters outward in slow motion. A woman draws a huge silver handgun, shoots at various people and wounds one man in the arm (we see a little blood); another woman punches her between the eyes and a UFO boarding ramp crushes her (we see no blood). A man shoots another man, leaving a square hole in his chest; the hole fills with blood as the wounded man dies. An alien lays hands on a dead man's chest and the hole heals as a wound appears on the alien's chest and it bleeds. An unseen force knocks an alien onto his back, apparently dead (he is not dead).
 An alien revives a bird that died from a windshield impact, and then eats it and coughs up feathers. The bottom of a flying alien vessel falls onto a dog off screen, we hear a sound and later we hear that the dog died.
 Several men chase various vehicles on deserted highways and swerve and shoot out windshields and side windows; no one is hurt. A man shoots a man through the window of his truck and we later see that the man's Bible stopped the bullet. A man fires a gun through a window of a house where the gas burner is on, it explodes and the property is in flames (we see the man with a swollen, charred head and face). Several men point guns at one another and shout throughout the film, but do not shoot. A man keeps a shotgun at home and shoots it several times at intruders on his property and at an RV on the road; he doesn't hit anyone.
 Several men slap one another in the face while shouting strings of profanity, but are unharmed; they often receive blows to the groin without permanent harm. A woman kicks the groin of a man and he doubles over in pain and shouts. A man is struck in the groin by a flying object and later by a child kicking him; he doubles over and groans.
 An alien shape-shifts several times, becoming invisible, and appears out of nowhere to scare several people. An alien performs mind melds, via fingers to the head, with half a dozen people; they each faint and two of the people argue with the alien loudly before and after they wake up (about God and evolution). An alien heals a woman's milky, blind eye after he rubs his hands together and touches it (his eye becomes milky as hers clears and then his clears and she can see); they argue about healing and he ends the argument with a declaration that healing is a natural part of evolution.
 A car with a man inside drives off a tall bridge and we see a fireball rise above the railing. Two men drive an RV erratically, denting the doors of two other vehicles and leaving the scene. An alien drives a car down a highway recklessly, runs it off the road end. An alien drives an RV through a tall weathervane and windmill (no one is injured).
 Several scenes at the Comic Con convention feature fans dressed as alien warriors from pulp fiction and sci-fi classics and we hear grunts and roars. We see a scene from a video game in which guns fire and walls explode in flames, followed by a "Star Trek" scene of Captain Kirk battling a monster in a desert. We see demonstrations of karate, virtual reality fighting (punching air) and Japanese swords (one sword breaks).
 An older woman tells some guests that children used to throw stones at her house, calling her crazy. An alien tells human friends that his brain is scheduled for removal for stem-cell research.
 Throughout the film, a space alien appears with greenish-brown-gray skin and the sight causes six people to faint at various times.


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LANGUAGE 10 - About 56 F-words, 6 sexual references, 45 scatological terms, 30 anatomical terms, 17 mild obscenities, name-calling (idiots, crazy, old, mad, evil, devil, nerds, gay, queer, slobber-knocker, hillbillies, earthman, space man, space babe, space monkey, short round, Peter Parker, hillbillies, God-blathering, MIB, midgets, Hoss, fatboy, rapist), 24 stereotypical references to Americans, hillbillies, Christians, Native Americans, Darwin and the Theory of Evolution, science fiction fans and writers, the English, French girls, FBI agents and police officers, Republicans, gays, lesbians, trailer park women, women in command positions, extraterrestrials and UFOs, Japanese healers, dwarves, 10 religious profanities, 23 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - A space alien and a woman share a marijuana cigarette around a campfire and drink beer from bottles with two other people (the woman giggles, talks about hallucinations and hunger and then passes out), and a woman cries and shouts, "My weed!" as her house is destroyed by a fire. A bar scene features beer bottles on tables and three men drink beer in a trailer park. A space aliens smokes 3 cigarettes and a man smokes 1 cigarette.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Evolution, religions, faith, reality vs. fantasy, UFOs, science fiction, self esteem, people who are different, the American government, prejudices, stem-cell research.

MESSAGE - Extraterrestrials represent the evolutionary future of humanity.

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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