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Sahara | 2005 | PG-13 | - 2.5.5

Matthew McConaughey stars as an explorer who goes to North Africa with his longtime friend (Steve Zahn) determined to find a legendary Civil War ship that's reportedly filled with treasure. Along the way he meets a World Health Organization doctor (Penelope Cruz) who believes that there's a link between the ship and an unexplained outbreak of disease and death in the area. Also with Lambert Wilson and William H. Macy. Directed by Breck Eisner. [2:07]

SEX/NUDITY 2 - A man and a woman lie on a beach in swimsuits and they kiss. (we can see the man's bare chest, the woman's cleavage, and bare abdomen and legs). A man is shown bare-chested while swimming, a woman wears low-cut tops and dresses that reveal cleavage, bare shoulders and back, and a man's pants hang low in the back revealing buttock cleavage. A man and a woman flirt in a few scenes.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 5 - A man attacks a woman, she kicks him and runs, two other men attack her, knock her down and hold her around the throat; she struggles and gasps, another man holds a knife over her, and he is shot through the hand by a man with a spear gun (we see the bloody hand and the spear going through his hand), who proceeds to repeatedly punch and kick all three men.
 A man lies dead, and another man is shot in the leg and then three times in the head and chest (we see him lying motionless with blood stains on his shirt). We see a dead man covered with bloody sores. A man and a woman walk through a village and find children and other people dead from a disease (we see a child's hand with bloody sores and we see bloody hand prints on the wall). We see many people lying on the ground moaning and suffering from a disease and we also see bloody sores on their skin.
 Battle scenes show gunfire, bombs exploding, men being tossed through the air, fires, and men scrambling for cover. A ship fires many cannons at men on the banks of a river and the men fire back. In one scene an armed faction surrounds another armed faction. Several men are shot, and three people are surrounded by heavily armed people and taken prisoner (we see them with their hands tied behind them).
 While on a boat, a man approaches another man with a machete, swings it, and then they fight with punches and kicks, one is pushed off the back of the boat, the other is shot at, and men on the riverbank shoot at them. A man jumps from one boat to another, and he is shot at repeatedly.
 Two men fight several armed men: one man is punched repeatedly, another has his arm broken (we hear crunching), one is pinned underneath a car when the tires are shot out, and one man is held in the air by the throat (he gasps and struggles). A man is hit in the head with a gun and is knocked out, and a man punches a man in the face. Three men hold guns on two guards, and a woman is handcuffed and forced into a helicopter.
 A man standing outside a helicopter readying for takeoff on a high platform holds a gun on two men inside the helicopter, and he is hit from behind by another man: they fight with punches and kicks, the helicopter spins knocking one man over the side of the platform, he hangs from the side, and the other man steps on his finger and slashes at his hands with a knife and the man falls, but climbs back up; the two men fight with many punches and kicks and one man falls to his death. Also, a woman in the helicopter hits a man, she jumps out, and jumps onto the back of a man who in turn hits her and throws her to the ground where she lies unconscious.
 Three men in a boat approach men in another boat and threaten them, asking for information: one boat pulls away fast and pulls a rope that causes the other boat to turn over. A boat runs aground, a truck on a riverbank drives into the water, and one boat explodes causing two other boats to blow up. A cannon is fired on a helicopter, which explodes and crashes to the ground in flames.
 A woman is lowered into a well by a rope, she slips, gets her grip and she is lowered to the bottom; she hears gunfire from the surface, and a dead man slumps over the wall of the well (we see blood on the man's face).
 Trucks are set on fire. Flames shoot out of a tunnel and a man is forced out ahead of the flames; he hangs onto equipment until the flames stop. Men in a helicopter fire on people driving a car, and the car crashes through a wall.
 Two men handcuffed to a truck's bed liner fall off the back of the truck and skid along the road being sprayed by sand as they go; they come to a stop, then walk a great distance through a desert, slide down a large sand hill and crash onto the ground covered by the bed liner. Three people jump from their camels' backs onto a moving train, and a woman jumps, and she is caught by a man who swings her by the arm until she catches onto the side of the train.
 A woman falls through a rotted floor and finds many skeletons. A sick man panics when a doctor shines a light in his eyes and we see that his eyes are discolored and bloodshot.
 People talk about a poisoned water supply and the threat it poses for the world population, doctors talk about the spread of an epidemic, and people talk about a deadly disease spreading quickly. People talk about a "ship of death."
 We see many people living in squalor in impoverished African countries, we see chickens in a cage lying dead, and several people have decorative scarring on their faces.


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LANGUAGE 5 - 1 F-word, 3 scatological terms, 4 anatomical terms (1 mild), 11 mild obscenities, 5 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - People are shown smoking cigarettes, cigars and drinking alcohol.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Treasure hunters, obsession, Civil War, the World Health Organization, plague, toxic waste disposal, poverty, solar power, warlords, corruption, political chaos, curses, Islam.

MESSAGE - Don't give up on finding your treasure.

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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