Bend It Like Beckham

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +3

Content: -2

Trapped between two worldviews in this comic drama, 18-year-old Jess (Parminder Nagra) is the daughter of Indian immigrant parents living in London. She is an excellent soccer player, but her parents are still tied to the culture of their homeland and forbid her to play because they believe it is wrong for a young woman to wear shorts in public. Jess loves her mom and dad but desires to enjoy the freedom of playing her sport. While her parents dont understand why she wants to play soccer, she is noticed by another great soccer player who gives her a chance to play on an organized team. She sneaks off to practices and games and, unknown to her parents, becomes the teams star player. Jesss hero is David Beckham, star of Englands Manchester United team, who is known for his ability to bend the ball around the defense in a free kick. Her parents eventually discover the truth, leading to a serious clash of cultures.

Bend It Like Beckham offers an interesting view of how people live in another culture, showing the traditions of India in colorful detail. The film honors the merits of teamwork and shows how irresponsible decisions negatively affect others. It portrays a caring family that shows concern and forgiveness for each other, but sadly the continual deceit and disobedience of a daughter toward her parents reasonable requests is rewarded; this film could encourage children to rebel against their parents. The film is generally clean with no premarital sexual relationships or nudity to take away from the storys overall innocence. David Beckham is a great soccer player, but he probably would not condone Jesss bending of the rules.

Preview Reviewer: Blaine Butcher
Fox Searchlight Pictures

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: few (3).

Obscene Language: few (2) S-word 2.

Profanity: few exclamatory (3) G 1, JC 2.

Violence: moderate drunken fight between friends, soccer player kicks other player, girl kicks soccer ball in boys groin.

Sex: none.

Nudity: none.

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: several girls locker room talk about having sex with many boys, references to girls who have sex a lot, comments about girls chest, man and woman lying down kissing in car with clothes unbuttoned.

Drugs: moderate men drunk at party, people drinking alcohol at party, teenagers drinking alcohol.

Other: people praying to picture of Hindu god, women praying to Hindu gods, people praying to idols, girl disobeys parents, boy has scars from abusive father, girl realizes that burn scars on her leg are nothing to be ashamed about, mom tries to understand daughter,

Running Time: 113 minutes.
Intended Audience: teenagers and adults.

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