MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +3

Content: -1 1/2

De-Lovely, a Chicago-like musical, is the partially fictionalized biography of the famous and enduring American composer Cole Porter (Kevin Kline). The film is set to a remarkable score of Porter's own musical numbers, performed by popular musicians like Alanis Morisette and Natalie Cole. But more than showcasing his fabulous musical legacy, De-Lovely tells the story of Porter's tumultuous lifestyle, his lengthy but unusual relationship with his wife, Linda (Ashley Judd), and his persistent search for love in the arms of the numerous men with whom he had homosexual relationships. It begins with an elderly Porter being escorted by Gabe (Jonathan Pryce), the apparent director of a new musical show about Porter's life. Gabe seems to intend for Cole to preview and critique the show. But when they watch the performances unfold and listen to Coles own songs, the show becomes reality as Porter explains his life, his passions and his choices to Gabe.

De-Lovely has much to offer both musically and dramatically. And in a day when Christians are faced with pressures to consider homosexuality an acceptable lifestyle, De-Lovely may be worth seeing and discussing simply because it approaches the topic without being terribly graphic. It includes males dancing and kissing as well as implied sexual encounters. The film promotes the claim that homosexuals, like heterosexuals, are simply searching for love in their own way. But Coles search is destructive as he endangers himself, his career and his marriage through his selfish pursuit of happiness. Linda, in contrast, demonstrates selfless love for Cole by protecting, encouraging and remaining committed to him. Unfortunately, appropriate moral commentary is absent from this film, making it difficult to recommend to Previews readers. The film adds crude and profane language, sealing its negative acceptability rating.

Preview Reviewer: Shaun Daugherty

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: Several (5) times mild (hell 1, damn 1); strong (ass 2, bitch 1)

Obscene Language: None

Profanity: Many (16) times moderate (OMG 2, MG 1, G 8); strong (GD 2, J 1, C 1, C-sake 1)

Violence: Few times mild (man falls off horse and breaks legs, reference to domestic violence)

Sex: Several times mild (unmarried man and woman awake in bed together, man shown leaving or entering rooms of other men for implied sexual encounters)

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times mild (some innuendo referring to male genitals); moderate (references to homosexual encounters in the past and future)

Drugs: Many times mild (almost constant use of alcohol and tobacco)

Other: Appropriate use of Gods name in Im in Gods hands, portrayal of smoking-induced emphysema and death, use of music to carry and fictionalize the story, portrayal of unconditional love, portrayal of the ways that the selfish pursuit of pleasure can hurt loved ones, positive portrayal of homosexuality as a way that people search for love

Running Time: 124 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

Click HERE for a PRINTER-FRIENDLY version of this review.