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Swan Song | 2021 | R | – 3.3.6

content-ratingsWhy is “Swan Song” rated R? The MPAA rating has been assigned for “language.” The Kids-In-Mind.com evaluation includes a few kissing scenes, some flirting and a drawing of two nude people, a man has several seizures and we hear that he is very ill, discussions of cloning technology, a woman dies from a terminal illness, we hear of a man dying in a motorcycle accident, discussions of death and dying and saving loved ones from trauma and pain, and 17 F-words and other strong language. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.


In the near future, when a man (Mahershala Ali) realizes that he is terminally ill he agrees to an experimental procedure that will allow a cloned version of himself to take his place with his family (Naomie Harris and Dax Rey) in order to save them from the pain and grieving his death will cause. Also with Awkwafina, Glenn Close, Nyasha Hatendi, Adam Beach and Lee Shorten. Directed by Benjamin Cleary. A few lines of dialogue are spoken in French without translation. [Running Time: 1:52]

Swan Song SEX/NUDITY 3

 – A husband and his wife hug and she says, “Easy tiger.” A man and a woman kiss tenderly. A man kisses a woman sleeping in bed (she rustles but does not wake up). A husband and his wife hug and she kisses his head as she places his hand on her abdomen (she talks about her being pregnant). A husband and his wife hug and kiss in several scenes. A husband and his wife lie in bed together and hold each other.
 A man and a woman look at each other flirtatiously, sitting opposite each other on a train; they each break off pieces of a chocolate bar in the middle of the table and say goodbye when the woman gets off the train.
 A woman wears a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage and bare shoulders. A woman is shown pregnant in a few scenes. A line drawing shows two people nude from the back and we see their bare buttocks, legs and backs with no other detail.

Swan Song VIOLENCE/GORE 3

 – A man has a seizure, falls to the ground thrashing and lays still; he wakes with a start and a gasp and struggles to get up and walk to a car that drives him away. A man has a seizure, he collapses and twitches briefly; we hear that any of these seizures could kill him. A man collapses on a bathroom floor, twitches briefly, lies still and wakes with a deep gasp (we see no injuries).
 Two men argue and shove each other. Scenes of a man’s memories are shown in quick succession as they are apparently transferred to a cloned person. A man has a seizure and collapses into another man’s arms briefly. A man stabs himself in the hand with a pencil and we see a trickle of blood. A dog barks at a man when it doesn’t recognize the man. A man grabs a game system out of the hands of his young son, yells and throws it against the wall breaking it (it is a dream) and wakes up in a start.
 A husband tells his wife that he slipped in the shower while he was away and that he is a bit fuzzy. A man sits up in a chair and seems distressed rubbing his forehead and we see a small tape dot on his temple. A woman’s voice says that a man’s deterioration is accelerating. A man sees another man that looks identical to him sleeping in a chair. A woman is shown in a hospital delivery room wearing a hospital gown before and after her baby is born. A woman lies in a bed with a tube at her nose and her skin seems blotchy; the next scene shows a man sprinkling ashes into water and we understand that the woman died.
 A woman screams and cries that her twin brother is dead and that it is her fault. We hear that a woman’s twin brother died in a motorcycle accident and the woman went into shock and depression, isolating herself from her husband and son for a while. A man talks about imagining his brother-in-law dangling from a tree after being thrown from his motorcycle on a mountain road. People talk about the ethics of cloning. A woman talks to a man about telling his wife that he is dying. A woman talks to a man about how a transfer process works to prepare his clone to take over his life when the first man dies. A man talks about going to visit his father after his parents divorced. A wife complains that she feels like she lost her husband. A man pretends not to remember that he has a son and his wife becomes upset. A dog enters a room, sees two identical men, yips and runs out of the house.
 A robot server takes a beverage order from a man on a train. A small spherical being floats into the air, speaks giving a man a message and then bursts into pieces (it looks like confetti). A man and a boy play a virtual game where a frog and a tiny robot fight each other.

Swan Song LANGUAGE 6

 – About 17 F-words, 9 scatological terms, 2 anatomical terms, 1 mild obscenity, name-calling (weird, ridiculous, bossier, sexy bowling ball bod, psycho, cynical, selfish, wanker), exclamations (oh no, shut-up, don’t do that, enough, wow, oh my gosh, no way, easy tiger, no no no, I’m not done, stop), 6 religious exclamations (e.g. oh my God, God). | profanity glossary |

Swan Song SUBSTANCE USE

 – A glass of wine is shown on a table in front of a man during a meal (we do not see him drink). A woman smokes a hand rolled cigarette outside and a man says that those things will kill her.

Swan Song DISCUSSION TOPICS

 – Terminal illness, cloning, AI, accidental death, twins, DNA modification, ethics, secrets, cancer, divorce, infidelity, music therapy, learning difficulties.

Swan Song MESSAGE

 – It’s difficult to let go of loved ones, no matter what the circumstances.

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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