Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio, The

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +3

Content: -2

Set in the 1950s and 60s, this comedic drama based on real life tells of a family of 12 who can barely make it. Evelyn Ryan (Julianne Moore), a resourceful homemaker with a great talent for writing, uses her ability to enter promotional contests with the help of Dortha (Laura Dern) and wins numerous times. Evelyns husband Kelly (Woody Harrelson) works a job that is below his skills, and the money he brings home is even lower. He is intimidated by his wifes success. Instead of being happy when Evelyn bails the family out of trouble, he becomes enraged and breaks things during his tantrums. On top of his anger problem, Kelly drinks too much and spends money they dont have on booze, which only exacerbates the familys troubles. Having 10 children is a big challenge, but Evelyn has to deal with a husband who is one of them.

In this entertaining and sometimes touching film, Evelyns response to the familys difficulties is nearly superhuman. Challenge after challenge is thrust on this mother, and she consistently responds with patience and love. All of the women are portrayed as smart, charming and beautiful, while the men are shown to be stupid chauvinists. When Evelyn goes to her priest for advice about her husbands abusive behavior, he tells her that its her fault and that she needs to work harder to please her husband. This priest is said to have the same smell of alcohol as her drunken husband. In this story of good overcoming evil, some may get the message that all men are jerks. Dramatic license is admittedly used, and the slanted view of men and women is troubling, making the story less believable. The most objectionable aspect is the frequent profane use of the name God and other bad language.

Preview Reviewer: Alan Boyer

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 (6) times mild (damn 2); moderate (b-stard 2); strong (-ss 2)

Obscene Language: Few (3) times strong (f-word 2, s-word 1)

Profanity: Many (21) times moderate (OL 1, G 6); strong (GD 6, J 3, C4, JC 1)

Violence: Several times mild (man brakes objects in the house few times, man struggles with women she slips and falls breaking bottles and badly cuts hands, man get physical with women and children come to her defense jumping on him no one is hurt)

Sex: None

Nudity: Few times mild (woman is undressed by husband because her hands are injured, woman shown in slip, baby shown getting diaper changed)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times mild (innuendo)

Drugs: Several times mild (man seen drinking whiskey several times); moderate (man appears to be drunk a few times)

Other: Children pray in the closet with Rosary

Running Time: 104 minutes
Intended Audience: Young Adults and Up

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