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V for Vendetta | 2006 | R | - 6.7.5

A future Britain shrouded in fear is run by a totalitarian government, headed by a chancellor (John Hurt) who controls all aspects of the inhabitants' lives and does not tolerate dissent. But a masked vigilante known only as "V" saves a young woman (Natalie Portman) from torture and tries to encourage a citizen revolt by blowing up the Old Bailey building and then threatening to blow up the House of Parliament as a symbol of defiance. Also with Hugo Weaving, Stephen Rea and Stephen Fry. Directed by James McTeigue. [2:12]

SEX/NUDITY 6 - We see many nude corpses being tossed into a ditch (male and female genitals are visible) and we see a statue of a woman with bare breasts.
 A man (he's a bishop) enters a room where a woman is dressed up like a little girl; he tries to reach up the woman's dress, pushes her back on a bed and tries to kiss her (please see the Violence/Gore category for more details).
 Three men threaten a woman and one holds her around the throat while another begins unfastening his pants, implying that they are going to rape her.
 We see photographs, briefly, of people involved in sex acts -- one is of a person biting another, and one shows a close-up of bare buttocks -- but it is not clear who the people are or what exactly they are doing.
 We see several women in a dressing room wearing theatrical dance costumes that include thong bottoms that reveal fishnet stocking-covered buttocks, a woman wears a low-cut, clinging sweater that reveals cleavage and the outline of her nipples, and a woman wears a low-cut dress that reveals cleavage. A man is bare-chested with a towel wrapped around his waist and we see a man in his jockey shorts after his pants have been slashed and have fallen to the ground around his ankles.
 Two women kiss tenderly, and then passionately. A woman kisses a man wearing a mask. A man and a woman dance together.
 A woman writes about coming out to her parents about being gay and that they shunned her.

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VIOLENCE/GORE 7 - A man with knives fights several men: he throws the knives, striking a couple of the men, then slashes others, a lot of blood sprays and spurts with every strike, and one man is struck in the forehead with a thrown knife.
 A man with knives attacks several men: one of them shoots another, blood spurts from the wound, others are slashed and blood sprays, and another man is stabbed in the stomach, and he spits and coughs blood and falls to the floor. A man with many knives slashes two men who try to remove his mask (blood sprays and gushes and they fall to the ground).
 A man holds a man around the throat, lifts him of the ground, and then breaks his neck (we hear a crunch).
 A man slips in a shower and falls to the floor when he is startled by a man entering the room; we later see the man lying dead with a stream of vomit and blood near his head (from poison).
 A man is pushed to his knees, we see a bloody wound on his head, and he pleads with a man who then shoots him in the head (we see the bloody bullet hole). A man is shot many times by many people with guns, blood sprays and spurts and the man stumbles to the ground. A girl is shot in the back, blood spurts out of her body, she falls to the ground and a pool of blood collects under her.
 A man threatens to blow up a TV station, many armed people kick a door down, and a man is shot and falls to the floor whimpering.
 A man walks out of a burning building and we see that he has been badly burned over his entire body (his skin glistens from the burns and we are told that he has no eyes). We see a building explode and burst into flames, people from inside the building rush to get out, and one man walks out of the flames and is badly burned.
 A man with many knives attacks three men: one man is slashed (no blood is visible), one man is thrown against a wall, and one has his pants slashed and we see them fall to the ground around his ankles.
 A woman kicks a man who is trying to force her to have sex with him, the man falls back onto the floor, another man enters the room, and the first man tries to shoot the second man, who grabs him by the throat and holds him; we then see the first man lying dead on the floor with a stream of vomit and blood on the floor next to his head.
 A woman walks along dark streets and into an alley where she is approached by a man, then another man, and they both threaten her; she pulls out a can of mace, and another man grabs her from behind and holds a knife to her throat while one of the other men begins to unfasten his pants implying that they are going to rape her.
 A woman is hit in the head, she falls to the floor, a black bag is put over her head and she is taken away (a young girl watches from under a bed where she is hiding, she screams and she is also taken away). A man is hit hard in the face (we see blood and tissue on his mouth), he is then hit in the head with a stick (we see a bloody gash on his forehead), and his head is covered with a black bag and he is taken away. A woman climbs out a window, falls to the ground below, she is grabbed and a black bag is put over her head.
 We see a man being shocked by a cattle prod while lying on the floor and he twitches from the jolt. A woman is questioned (she quivers), she is bound by the hands and sprayed with a liquid, her head is shaved, she is put into a dark cell, and her head is dunked in water repeatedly.
 Two men are awakened, beaten and taken away by armed people (for being gay). We hear that a woman was "taken" by a squad and we see the squad breaking the door of an apartment down to take another woman away (for being gay).
 People with weapons surround a man, who has shot a girl, and they presumably attack him but the scene ends). We see several people being attacked by riot police in a couple of scenes.
 We hear about a man who had nearly blown up the House of Parliament but was captured and hung (we see the scene played out while the story is told and we see the man with a sword fight with guards briefly, he is held at spear point and then we see the man being hanged while a crowd of people watch and his feet thrash and twitch).
 A man with a gun threatens another man, a woman sprays the man with the gun in the face with mace, he hits her on the head with the gun, she falls to the floor unconscious and the other man is struck in the head and falls to the floor.
 We see a dead woman sitting up in her bed and we see a dead man lying on a table in a morgue after having been poisoned. Many nude corpses are tossed into ditches, and then sprinkled with lime (we see that there are sores on their faces and are told that they died from a virus). We see a sick boy (with sores on his face) in a hospital bed and we hear that he died. We hear about people being injected with something, presumably to counteract a virus, and we see lines of people being injected (the people are sick and have sores on their faces). A man has badly burned hands. We see people locked in filthy pens.
 A man with a gun robs a store (he shoots the gun into the ceiling but no one is hurt). A man threatens another man with a sword to his throat. A man with a sword fights against a suit of armor and eventually lops its helmet off (it bounces on the floor).
 A huge army holds guns on a large group of unarmed people. A man orders that a woman be shot. We hear about the execution of terrorists. We hear that two men killed themselves.
 A very large building explodes sending flames and fireworks into the air, and a building explodes and collapses sending flames and fireworks into the air.
 A man squeezes a glass in his hand and breaks it (there's no blood). A woman cries uncontrollably and is unable to catch her breath.
 People fall and play fight on a stage, and several people with guns shoot two men on a stage (it is all pretend).

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LANGUAGE 5 - 4 F-words, 8 sexual references, 9 scatological terms, 4 anatomical terms, 17 mild obscenities, 3 religious profanities, 22 religious exclamations.

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SUBSTANCE USE - Many people are injected with a drug, and a man takes pills (presumably prescription drugs) and washes them down with alcohol. A man and a woman drink alcohol, a man and a woman drink champagne, and people drink beer in a pub. People are shown smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol in pub scenes. A man's medicine cabinet is lined with medicine bottles.

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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Fascism, authoritarianism, government lies that breed fear, government crimes, fabrication of the news, being above the law, terrorism, revolution, war, plagues, curfews, vengeance, symbolism, living without faith, biological weapons, power, intolerance, viruses, epidemics, conformity, non-conformity, justice, freedom, detention facilities, revenge, safety, political spin, allegiance, treason, censorship, torture, homosexuality, the persecution of homosexuals.
MESSAGE - People should not be afraid of their governments, governments should be afraid of the people. There is strength in unity, and governments built on lies eventually will fall.
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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