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Two Lovers | 2009 | R | - 8.3.7

A sensitive man (Joaquin Phoenix) falls in love with his troubled neighbor (Gwyneth Paltrow), who's dating married man. At the same time, his parents prefer him dating the daughter of a close family friend. Also with Vinessa Shaw, Moni Moshonov, Isabella Rossellini and Elias Koteas. Directed by James Gray. [1:50]

SEX/NUDITY 8 - A man and a woman are heard moaning and we see movement under sheets: the man is seen on top of the woman, his face is pressed against hers, and they are both moaning and breathing heavily; she screams, and it is implied that they have climaxed.
 A man and a woman kiss passionately and the man presses up against the woman (they are standing outdoors against a wall); we hear the sound of a zipper and they both begin to moan and breathe heavily (there is no visible nudity), the man appears to be thrusting, and it is implied that they have climaxed.
 A woman unbuttons her sweater, pulls out her bare breast and holds it in her hand. A woman is seen dressing after sex (she is standing and we see her cleavage in a bra, her bare back and sides of her torso, and part of her stomach). A man is seen undressing and we see his bare chest and back. A man buttons his shirt after having sex. In a nightclub scene, women are seen in short dresses and low-cut tops.
 A man and a woman lie in bed together after they have had sex (the man kisses her chest briefly). A man and a woman dance closely in a nightclub (they embrace, he kisses her chest, and she rubs his back and sides). A man sits on a bed, strokes a woman's face and kisses her clothed arm.
 A man kisses a woman tenderly, and then passionately. A young teen girl and boy embrace and kiss tenderly on a subway. A man kisses a woman tenderly, and they embrace. A man and a woman kiss on the cheek in multiple scenes. A married man strokes his mistress's cheek with the back of his hand.
 A man "writes" on a woman's bare forearm with his index finger (he holds her arm and strokes it briefly). A man bends over a sleeping woman, puts his lips close to hers like he's going to kiss her, and then pulls away.
 A man asks a woman out on a date. A woman and a man flirt in multiple scenes. A man appears attracted to a woman in multiple scenes. A man and a woman are seen out on a date.
 A woman speaks -- in multiple scenes -- about being in a relationship with a married man who has children. A woman is seen on a date with a married man. A woman talks about a married man she is in a relationship with paying for her apartment. A married man and a woman walk with their arms around each other. A woman talks about a married man leaving his family for her. A married man apologizes for not being in the hospital when his mistress was sick.
 A woman suffers a miscarriage after becoming pregnant by a married man.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 3 - A man swings his leg over a boardwalk railing, jumps into the water below (we hear a loud splash), we see him floating underwater with his arms raised, yells for help after surfacing and three men carry him after rescuing him from drowning.
 A woman cries, holds her abdomen (she's in pain and says she's scared), she calls a friend and tells him she is bleeding and may need to go to the hospital and we see her in a hospital bed after suffering a miscarriage and a nurse talks about a "D.N.C. procedure."
 A man plays with a lit match and puts his finger in the flame. A woman holds a man's hand and sees self-inflicted scars on his wrist and arm.
 A man is upset when a woman says, "You're like a brother to me." A man and a woman argue when the man says, "I don't think we should see each other anymore." A woman cries and tells a man to leave her alone. A woman cries over a married man she is dating because he's not leaving his wife for her. A man talks about his fiancée leaving him over genetic testing (they were both positive for Tay-Sachs disease and couldn't have children). A woman yells at her husband saying, "I think he tried again!" (meaning suicide). A man yells at another man saying, "Aren't you going to thank the man who saved your life?" A man cries and talks about hurting himself and ending up in the hospital. A woman cries and tells a man she isn't leaving with him. A man cries and yells at a woman. A man sobs over a woman, and a man cries and holds a woman. A man mentions a conspiracy by drug conspiracies. A man says he feels "dead." A man mentions a "terrorist alert."


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LANGUAGE 7 - About 28 F-words, 6 scatological terms, 2 mild obscenities, name-calling (weird, crazy), 1 religious profanity, 8 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - A woman take two ecstasy pills on the way to a nightclub. People drink mixed drinks and alcohol in a restaurant, people drink wine during a dinner, and people drink champagne at a party. A man takes medication for psychological problems. A man tells a woman she is being emotional because she is high, a woman talks about passing out in a bathroom from drugs, and a man expresses concern about a woman using drugs.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Attempted suicide, psychological and emotional problems, living with parents as an adult, break-up of engagement, Judaism, Jewish immigrants, tradition, immigrants in Brooklyn, Brighton Beach, dating, falling in love, deception, unrequited love, voyeurism, infidelity, dating a married man, miscarriage, drug use, Bar Mitzvahs, photography, Tay-Sachs disease, ADHD.

MESSAGE - What drives a man to love is usually the love of a challenge.

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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