MPAA Rating: PG

Entertainment: +3

Content: -1

This wonderfully imaginative drama, based on Louis Sachers award-winning novel, challenges viewers to pay close attention in order to put together the puzzle. Likable teenager Stanley Yelnats (thats Stanley spelled backwards) IV (Shia LaBeouf) is convicted for a theft he didnt commit and sentenced to 18 months at Camp Green Lake, a youth detention camp in the middle of the West Texas desert. Stanleys father (Henry Winkler), a self-proclaimed inventor, blames his familys problems on a 150-year-old curse by a Latvian gypsy (Eartha Kitt). At the camp, Stanley and his fellow inmates are forced to spend every day digging holes by the scary warden (Sigourney Weaver) and her cruel right-hand man Mr. Sir (Jon Voight). Theyre hoping the boys find the hidden treasure of legendary bank robber Kissin Kate Barlow (Patricia Arquette). Flashbacks of the colorful history of Stanleys family in the Wild West intertwine with the present, creating danger, adventure, romance and suspense.

Holes is clearly a fairy tale, but parents may be concerned about the gypsys curse and the notion that witchcraft can control a family for generations. Then again, with the films themes of friendship and family values, parents may be willing to overlook some of the negatives. Stanley becomes the catalyst who breaks the spell by a heroic deed. The boys at Camp Green Lake torment newcomer Stanley, so some fighting is inevitable. Stanley becomes a big brother to the smallest inmate, nicknamed Zero (Khleo Thomas), a homeless boy who never talks. Stanley draws Zero out of his shell, teaches him to read and even saves his life. This bunch of seeming losers build character as they learn the meaning of friendship, forgiveness and self-respect. A rattlesnake strike and lethal yellow-spotted lizards crawling on two boys may frighten young viewers, but violence is not gratuitous. And a few exclamatory profanities and crude words mar the dialogue. Preview gives Holes a marginal acceptability rating due to its witchcraft element.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Walt Disney Co.

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 times (damn 1)

Obscene Language: Few times (3) (no f- or s-words)

Profanity: Exclamatory 1 (Oh God)

Violence: Several times (fights among boys, woman scratches mans face, off-screen shooting, rattlesnake strike, poisonous lizards crawl over boys)

Sex: None

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Once (passionate kiss)

Drugs: None

Other: Witchcraft (gypsy puts curse on family for 150 years)

Running Time: 111 minutes
Intended Audience: Ages 8 and older

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