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Spartan | 2004 | R | - 5.6.7

David Mamet thriller about an experienced and lethally efficient spy (Val Kilmer) who's teamed up with a special ops novice (Derek Luke) and assigned to find the kidnapped daughter of a high ranking government official. The two men soon suspect that the young woman was kidnapped by a white slavery ring, but as their investigation progresses it becomes obvious that the circumstances surrounding the abduction are far more complex and there is a dangerous conspiracy that may involve the highest political levels. Also with Tia Texada, Ed O'Neill, Kristen Bell and Alexandra Kerry. [1:46]

SEX/NUDITY 5 - A young woman takes off her top in front of a man (trying to convince him to let her smoke). A woman changes her clothes and we see her in a bra and panties. We hear about a nightclub where young women are bought for sex with older men. Two men talk about the sex slave trade (they are all young and blonde, etc.) and one man offers a woman to the other man ("you shall have her tonight"). We hear that a man has gone "tomcatting" and has been unfaithful to his wife. We meet a woman who runs an "escort service." We hear that a young woman has been sold into sex slavery. We hear that the naked bodies of a man and a woman have washed up on shore. A man talks about his ex-girlfriend having an affair with an older professor of hers. A man carries a vial of Ruffies (the date rape drug).


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VIOLENCE/GORE 6 - A man with a gun drawn goes into a house and another man waits outside with his gun trained on the house: the man inside shoots two men inside the house (one man lies on the floor gagging with blood trickling from his mouth) and the man who's outside shoots one man. A man is shot, blood sprays in the air and soaks the grass around him where he lays motionless, another man is shot in the back (it turns out to be a scarecrow in a man's jacket). Two men shoot many men, and one of them is shot in the chest. One man grabs a young woman (she screams and cries), shoves her in a car and the car races away. A man shoots a man who flips back and falls on the ground, and a man shoots a man whom we see dead on the ground with blood on his clothing. A man is shot in the chest and falls back onto the ground (we see a large bloody hole in his chest and blood on his clothes), and another man is grazed on the neck (we see a bloody wound). A man and a young woman run through an airport hangar while being chased by men in a car. A man is shot and trails blood along the floor, a woman is shot in the back (we see her die from her wounds later), and a man is cut in the throat (we see blood burbling out of the wound and he falls dead). We hear a gun shot, see a man lying dead on the floor with blood pooling around his head, and then see a hole in his temple (we hear that he committed suicide). We hear that a man and a woman have drowned at sea and see bodies being carried in body bags. Two men are ordered to fight until one man is left standing: we hear blows exchanged and grunts but see nothing. A man punches another man hard in the face (we see blood spray from his mouth and nose as he falls onto the floor). A man punches a man and slams him into a wall (we see bloody scratches on his cheek), he punches him in the stomach, shoves him into the side of a dumpster, and breaks his arm (we hear crack). A man holds another man and draws a knife toward his eye after being told by the first man to cut his eye out (the man screams and whimpers and nothing else happens). A man grabs a woman and shakes her, then shoves her down into a chair. A man punches a young woman in the stomach. A woman in fatigues runs frantically through woods followed by two men, the two men veer off, then another man appears and chases her (it's apparently a military training exercise). A man talks about being "shelled in the open." We hear about the king of Sparta sending just one man when asked for help by a neighboring king. We see scars on a man's back (apparently battle wounds). A young woman vomits.


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LANGUAGE 7 - 28 F-words and its derivatives, 10 sexual references, 3 scatological terms, 3 anatomical terms, 7 mild obscenities, 4 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - People are shown drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes. We hear that two people have been taking cocaine.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Political power, politics, covert operations, family, love, the sex-slave trade, date rape, Ruffies, kidnapping, alcoholism.

MESSAGE - Battles are first won in the mind.

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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