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Won't You Be My Neighbor? | 2018 | PG-13 | - 3.4.3

Documentary about the life of the beloved creator of the PBS children's television program Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: It covers the life of Fred Rogers and his passion to advocate for children and their well-being. Also with Joanne Rogers, François Scarborough Clemmons, Yo-Yo Ma, Joe Negri, David Newell, Betty Seamans and Margaret Whitmer. Directed by Morgan Neville. [1:34]

SEX/NUDITY 3 - A man talks about stunts that he would pull on people by taking their cameras and taking photos of his bare buttocks and we see one such photo of his bare buttocks. A young girl is shown wearing only underwear and we see her bare chest, abdomen and legs. A man is shown wearing swim trunks and swimming in a pool (we see his bare chest, abdomen, back and legs). Two women are shown wearing low-cut dresses that reveal cleavage.
 A male and a female hand puppets kiss.
 A man talks about illustrating another way of being a man. A man talks about being gay and going to a gay bar.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 4 - We see footage of the Robert F. Kennedy assassination including the presidential candidate standing at a podium in front of a crowd of people and then lying on the floor with blood on his head and face. We see television footage of students watching the launch of the Challenger space craft as it explodes. We see television footage of the Vietnam War with soldiers exchanging gunfire and paratroopers gliding to the ground from airplanes. We see footage of 9/11 and plumes of smoke pouring through streets as people run to safety.
 A man is shown pouring chemicals into a swimming pool where African-American people are swimming. We see people holding placards and protesting outside a man's memorial service and we hear that children were instructed to carry the protest signs.
 Children are shown pretending to be superheroes and they fight with kicks and punches. We see TV images of people clowning around with pratfalls and throwing pies in each other's faces. We see animated programming with violent sequences. A man and a man dressed as a woman fight in a boxing ring and one knocks the other on the head.
 A husband and his wife talk about their young son needing surgery and that he was on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood show to talk about having a tumor that kept his arms and legs from working properly; we see the boy in a wheelchair. We read about a young boy jumping off a roof with a cape tied around his neck thinking that he could fly. A young boy talks about his cat having been run over by a car and that he bled and they tried to fix him, but he died. A man talks to men in prison and one man says, "Feeling is dead in here." A man talks about methods to help children navigate difficult things in life; understanding war, divorce, racism, assassination, etc. A man talks about suffering from many childhood diseases including scarlet fever. A man recalls a child telling him, "My doggie's ear fell off in the automatic washer." A hand puppet talks about creating a border guard and he is proclaimed "the king against change." A man talks about "holy ground." A man makes reference to "Having the second Christ as my father." We hear that a man was very sick and he died.
 A female gorilla takes a man's shoes and socks off, then touches his hand gently and cradles him in her arms very gently. Film breaks and melts during a broadcast. A man talks about a dead fish in a tank and removes it with a net.


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LANGUAGE 3 - 2 sexual references, 4 anatomical terms, 2 mild obscenities, 2 derogatory terms for African-Americans, name-calling (radical, witch, relentless, goof ball kids, klutzy, Fat Freddy, fake, stupid), 3 religious exclamations (Christ, God No, God Hates [derogatory term for homosexuals deleted]). | profanity glossary |


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SUBSTANCE USE - A man and a woman are seen smoking cigarettes.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Children, mass media, racism, homosexuality, being neighborly, kindness, death, divorce, getting lost, doubt, educational television, PBS, Benjamin Spock, Thomas Brazelton, Margaret McFarland, Ralph Ellison, trust, feelings, bullying, control, Richard Nixon, safety, community, Vietnam War, make-believe, acceptance, inclusiveness, consumerism, right and wrong, anger, fear, anxiety, grief, isolation, human dignity, mistakes, rumors, eccentricity, dying well, judgment, narcissism, entitlement, depression, 9/11, diversity.

MESSAGE - Love, or the lack of it, is at the root of everything.

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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