Dangerous Beauty

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2 1/2

Content: -3

Set in 16th century Venice, DANGEROUS BEAUTY is the true story of Veronica Franco (Catherine McCormack), a very beautiful and shrewd courtesan. In Venice, beautiful courtesans serve as sexual partners for wealthy noblemen. Veronica has no desire to be a courtesan, but she falls in love with a young dashing nobleman, Marco Venier (Rufus Sewell), who can't marry her because she is far below his social status. So, Veronica's mother teaches her to be a courtesan and she soon becomes the most desired and admired courtesan in Venice. But she and Marco are still madly in love and cannot stay apart from each other. Eventually, Marco must leave to fight against the Turks and returns to find that disease is ravaging Venice and the courtesans are being blamed for bringing the wrath of God down on the sinful city. At first, it appears that Veronica will not survive this crisis, but with Marco's help she proves to be even more resourceful than expected.

This sumptuous, sensual drama is well done and will likely hold audiences in rapt attention. However, all the sadness in Veronica's life makes it rather dreary. Filming the life of a elite prostitute is not necessarily unacceptable, and Veronica's life as a courtesan is not portrayed as desirable or without adverse consequences. However, three of her sexual encounters are graphically shown with breast nudity, and some other bedroom scenes suggest sex. And there is a great deal of explicit discussion of sex, particularly some of the instructions Veronica's mother gives to her. In one scene, she instructs Veronica using a nude man, although the man in not shown fully nude. Further, startling sexual obscenities are used several times. When Veronica is tried for witchcraft by a tribunal of clergymen, she refuses to repent for her promiscuous life and protests that Venice women must be subservient wives and may not be free to marry whomever they love. One of the clergymen in the trial is cruel and bigoted, but a priest who continuously calls for Venice to turn from its sinful ways is portrayed fairly. Although DANGEROUS BEAUTY is realistic, it is much too sexually explicit to be desirable movie viewing.

Preview Reviewer: John Evans
Warner Brothers, 4000 Warner Blvd., Burbank, CA, 91522

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Once - Moderate

Obscene Language: Several(8) times - f-word 4, Other 4)

Profanity: None

Violence: Several times - Moderate (Intense sword fight with hand cut, striking in face twice, brief battle scene, courtesans treated roughly, whipping victims shown, man fights off mob)

Sex: Three times - graphic with breast nudity; Implied sex few times, bedroom scenes but no nudity.

Nudity: Several (5) times (Breast nudity in 3 sex scenes, woman dancer with bare breasts, breast nudity in portraits)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Many times - Frequently explicit (woman touches breast sensually, woman sensually eats asparagus and bananas, explicit sexual instructions, explicit discussions of sex, passionate kissing)

Drugs: Several times - Liquor and wine drinking at parties, banquets, and on canal boats

Other: God and scriptures sometimes referred to favorably, priest calls people to turn from sin, priest portrayed as vengeful, clergy try woman for witchcraft, disease attributed to God, woman objects to women being subservient and uneducated.

Running Time: UNK
Intended Audience: Adults

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