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Soul | 2020 | PG | – 1.3.1

content-ratingsWhy is “Soul” rated PG? The MPAA rating has been assigned for “thematic elements and some language.” The Kids-In-Mind.com evaluation includes one kissing scene, a man’s accidental death that leads to him transforming into a glowing being, discussions about how we develop personality, a few arguments, encounters with beings and nightmarish images, and some mild language and name-calling. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.


In this animated feature an elementary school music teacher (voiced by Jamie Foxx), on the brink of getting his big break accompanying a famous saxophonist (voiced by Angela Bassett), finds himself trapped in what seems to be purgatory, he enlists the help of a young, unassigned soul (voiced by Tina Fey) to help him get back to his earthly life. Also with the voices of Graham Norton, Rachel House, Alice Braga, Richard Ayoade, Phylicia Rashad, Donnell Rawlings, Questlove, Cora Champommier, Margo Hall, Daveed Diggs, Rhodessa Jones and Wes Studi. Directed by Pete Docter & Kemp Powers. Several lines of dialogue are spoken in unidentified languages with English subtitles. [Running Time: 1:40]

Soul SEX/NUDITY 1

 – A man kisses a woman on the lips in greeting and another woman asks, “What has gotten into you?” A man dances on a sidewalk with thrusting hips.
 A woman wears a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage. A man leaves a hospital wearing a hospital gown and we see his legs to the mid thighs in several scenes. A man bends down and tears his pants (we see part of his underwear through the tear).

Soul VIOLENCE/GORE 3

 – A distracted man walks through speeding traffic and cars honk at him, he walks through a construction area and a pile of bricks fall nearly crushing him, and when he falls into an open manhole, we see him transformed into a small glowing being on a moving sidewalk leading to a light (implying that he died). A glowing being in the shape of a man panics and runs down a moving sidewalk, he breaks through a force field and falls through a black and whites space before crashing onto a grass covered ground (he is unharmed). A glowing being in the shape of a man jumps off a ledge into a portal and moves toward Earth, but is pulled back up to the ledge in a couple of scenes. Two glowing beings fall through a tunnel and into a hospital room where one occupies a man’s body and the other a cat’s body. A man falls into a hole in a sidewalk and a glowing being pops out of him until another being puts the glowing being back in his body and he revives, but quakes with fear and runs away. We see a man lying motionless on a sidewalk as a glowing being shaped like him floats out of him. A large creature eats a glowing being in the shape of a man and we see inside it as a small glowing being remembers being told by looming characters that it wasn’t good enough.
 Many small glowing beings that sound like children move around an area and one bites another glowing being in the shape of a man in the arm. A man bumps into another man on a subway train and the other man reprimands him. A cat chases a man into a subway station and a woman nearly catches the cat; they run and slide through a tunnel and float into the air. A being snarls at another being and pulls a flying ship under a surface (not water but a sandy-type surface); it sprouts tentacles and runs away breaking through a wall while being chased by a man that throws smaller beings at it. A glowing being in the shape of a man fires a harpoon like weapon off the bow of a ship that catches a smaller being running in front of the ship and it pulls the ship under the surface. A small being runs through a screen and across a stage and is reprimanded by another being; the first being grows large and grumbles, it is chased by a glowing being and the large being throws several small glowing beings at him. A glowing being in the shape of an elderly woman says, “I’m 106 years old,” as she and two others move along a moving sidewalk that takes them toward a glowing light in the distance. We hear that once small glowing beings develop a complete personality they are able to pass through Earth’s portal to find a body to inhabit. A man is shown attached to monitors in a hospital bed. A man talks about being stuck between life and death. A being sneaks among shadows following a man and a cat. A glowing being chases two characters with a lasso. A man bends down and tears his pants (we see part of his underwear through the tear).
 A glowing being panics when he realizes that there is a soul missing, and he says, “The count is off.” A woman yells at a man and a cat. A man realizing that he might be dead yells, “I can’t die now.” A glowing being in the shape of a man yells, “I’m not done yet.” A woman yells at her adult son about his career plans and complains about washing his underwear. A man says, “I would die a happy man.” A character says, “My unconscious mind hates you.” A man says, “My life was meaningless.” A character says, “You can’t crush a soul here, that’s what Earth is for.” A man talks about feeling stuck between life and death. A man talks about his daughter getting sick and that he had to change his life plans. A cat scratches a door with its claws. A character talks about feeling like she is, “Not good enough for living,” and she later says, “I’m scared.” A woman and her adult son argue about his wanting to have a career playing jazz piano and she is dismissive of that dream.
 A cat using an electric razor attempts to cut a man’s hair and ends up shaving a hole in his hair; people in a barbershop gasp when they see him. An image of a man (represented as a memory) spews dust from its mouth (like vomit, but it is not goo). A boy playing the trombone throws the slide across the room. A boy playing the trumpet uses the bell to suck up candy. A man eats a piece of pizza that a cat stole from a restaurant and gave him from its mouth. A man walks awkwardly trying to get used to using his legs. A cat lifts its tail when a man picks it up and the man makes a face like there is an odor. A cat and a rat each hold a piece of pizza in their mouths. A cat licks between its legs and makes a face. A man says to a cat, “I washed your butt for you.” A man drinks a soda from a cup left under a seat on a subway until a cat slaps the cup out of his hand. A man has food stains on his hospital gown.

Soul LANGUAGE 1

 – 1 mild scatological term, 2 mild anatomical terms, 11 mild obscenities, name-calling (dead end, teach, overdue, feeble human brain, dumb, the worst day of my life, bendy meat sticks, stuck, stupid, manipulative megalomaniac, waste of time, liar, boring, untethered soul, weirdos, scary, stinky rock, lost souls, meat suit, sad, insecure, self-absorbed, pathetic, lunatic, arrogant, selfish, loner, least remarkable, idiot, pain in the butt), exclamations (what the…, heck, cool, you were jazzing, hat, oh boy, don’t play dumb with me, meh, jeez, you cheated, oh my goodness, I quit, uch, hey, oops, zip it, scram), 1 religious exclamation (Oh My Lord). | profanity glossary |

Soul SUBSTANCE USE

 – None.

Soul DISCUSSION TOPICS

 – Music careers, jazz, job security, public schools, life plans, personality, anxiety, second chances, disappointment, parental approval and pride, success, failure, obsession, inspiration, programming.

Soul MESSAGE

 – Don’t wait for things to happen; make them happen for yourself.

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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